The automount question was on my mind during a neighborhood party, so it came up in conversation when a neighbor mentioned he was into Ubuntu.  Long story short, he recommended a GUI application called “NTFS-Config” and this web tutorial:

http://www.dedoimedo.com/computers/automount_ntfs.html

Hot dog!  It worked.

During this episode I learned that Mint *used* to automount drives as its default but stopped doing that.  Users in the Mint forum don’t seem happy about this change.

Also I learned that the control of the automount function is inside the file “/etc/fstab” which you can edit manually — if you know the syntax.  The NTFS-Config GUI application adds the correct lines to the fstab file.

Automounting a drive in Linux also requires a “mount point”, which NTFS-Config creates.  This created a new “path” to my Thunderbird mail files, which meant that I needed to re-Browse to my mail folders on my Windows “C:” drive (which is my “sda1” drive in Mint).

All is now working fine.

By the way, to complete the story of my automount journey, I need to mention two solutions I tried that did *not* work:

“pysdm” seems to have a dedicated following, but it did not work for me.  The fields I needed to change were grayed out.

“mountmanager” held a lot of promise, with it’s nice GUI interface and many options settings.  Maybe I didn’t check the right boxes.

As mentioned above, “ntfs-config” worked like a charm.  It let me set all my drives to automount on boot, and also to mount with Write permissions.  If, after installing ntfs-config it does not work, follow the instructions on this page and it will work in Mint:

http://www.noobslab.com/2011/12/install-ntfs-configuration-tool-and.html

Windows users never deal with disk mounting.  Linux users should not have to either.  Windows = 1, Linux = 0.

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