Test post #Alternate partition layout
Alternate partition layout
Please note that Windows will only mount the first partition of any removable media - which includes USB flash drives. While you can get around this, it requires some highly kludgy driver procedures, which you are unlikely to be able to pull off on any machine where you are not an admin.
In short, having the Ubuntu Live as your first partition reduces the utility of your USB stick for what is statistically it's most likely task - transferring files to and from Windows machines.
Partition 1 : FAT32, full size of stick minus 750M
Partition 2 : FAT16, 750M (FAT16 because older versions of syslinux don't like FAT32)
Follow the instructions, but use /dev/sdX2 instead of /dev/sdX1, and make sure you make /dev/sdX2 bootable in fdisk.
For persistence, follow the instructions to create a loopback file at LiveCDPersistence. This feature works fine from a loopback file inside a FAT32 filesystem, just as long as the file contains a supported unionfs filesystem like ext2.
Now you have (mostly) the best of both worlds.
You can transfer files between Windows machines on the FAT32 partition
You have a persistent Ubuntu thumb
You can mount the FAT32 partition from a persistent Ubuntu boot (manually)
You can enlarge or shrink your casper-rw partition without having to repartition your thumb, just make a new loopback filesystem, mount them both, and copy the files across.
If the persistent boot automatically mounted the root of the FAT32 filesystem as well as the casper-rw filesystem, it would be ideal.