exFAT?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Ryan P, Oct 22, 2010.

  1. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #1
    I couldn't find much mention on here or on the Internet even of using exFat as a file system to share information between Macs and PC's but I've been playing with it today with good results so far. I take it, it is a new capability of OS X?

    I formatted a GUID disk with Disk Utility as exFAT and both OS X and WIN 7 via Boot Camp seem very happy to read and write to it. The performance seems quite good as well.

    Any downsides to this approach versus something like MacDrive (which I have already had several problems with)?

    Ryan
     
  2. macrumors 601

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #2
    What the heck? When did OS X get exFAT? Theoretically that would be perfect for a data drive to share with OS X and bootcamp Win7.

    MacDrive sucks. I cannot even tell you how many times it has corrupted my mac drives.
     
  3. macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    exFAT? Never heard of it and actually I can't see it in disc utility either... :confused:

    Tell us more! :)
     
  4. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #4
    Here is a screenshot from what it looks like in Win 7, going to boot back to OS X and take one from there.
     

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  5. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #5
    Here is from OS X. Perhaps it is something they put in the newest OS X builds with the 2010 Mac Pros? I've got a 2010 Hexcore.
     

    Attached Files:

  6. macrumors 601

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #6
    Wow. I obviously have no experience with this, but it is possible that this is the holy grail for boot camp users to share a data drive. I just got a refurb Mac Pro 2010 myself two days ago, so I can't wait to get home and check for native exFAT support.

    Being so new though, even I decide to switch, I'm definitely going to keep my time machine up to date. :)
     
  7. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #7
    Well with a "kids do not try this at home" warning, I'm actually using exFAT to share, not only my iTunes media files between by Win 7 and OS X but my actual iTunes database. I can see I may run into some issues down the road but it is working so far...what I have done is...

    1) Move all my iTunes media to the exFat partition
    2) Point iTunes in Win7 and OS X in Preferences to the exFAT media Location
    3) In OS X, Let it Rebuild it's Index, (It did seem to be slower to index on exFAT maybe??)
    4) Close iTunes, Move, it's XML and Database files from my user folder to a new folder on the exFAT drive.
    5) Use the "ln -s" command to create a symbolic link to the new location
    6) delete the old database files
    7) reboot the in Win 7 and use the brand new MKLINK /J command create symbolic links in windows to point Windows 7 itunes from "My Music" to the same location on exFat. delete the old database files

    So basically now when I boot back and forth from Win 7 and OS X iTunes seems to remember me exactly the same as where I left off. Or that's my theory anyway...going to take some more testing!
     
  8. macrumors 68020

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #8
    How did you get exFAT to show up as a format option in Disk Utility? Thanks.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #9
    Other than pick GUID as a partition type and have a 2010 Mac Pro, I didn't do anything special. The drive I used for the test was the Western Digital 1TB Black that shipped with the Mac.

    I was just in there hunting around for different options. In my last attempt at trying to get NTFS and HFS on the same drive I managed to completely corrupt the HFS partition and am still trying to get everything restored from backup! No pain no gain I guess...
     
  10. macrumors 68020

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #10
    Hmm... If you have time, do you think you can check the version of Disk Utility that you have? I'm running OS X 10.6.4 (10F569) and Disk Utility 11.5.1 (298.1).

    Thanks again!
     
  11. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #11
    Yes mine looks to be newer. I'm at 10.6.4 and 11.5.2 (298.4). Oh and I can confirm that I managed to answer this question by rebooting from Win 7 to OS X while I had over 20 iTunes downloads queued up in Win 7 on an exFAT partition and they all kept going on in OS X soon as soon as iTunes started....quite nifty.

    Ryan
     

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  12. macrumors 68020

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #12
    Awesome. Thanks. Looks like the rest of us will have to wait for Apple to provide us with the updated Disk Utility...
     
  13. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #13
    Just an FYI that exFAT partitions do not seem to be able to be backed up via Time Machine, so another option will be needed for that... I tried Lacie's Silver Keeper and that didn't work either...so I maybe backing up exFAT from Windows at this rate.

    Also be cautious will small files. I moved over a folder with an icon library with 300,000 16px-128px icon files and it not only expanded greatly in size in disk space over HFS (probably due to a much larger cluster size?) but finder took quite forever to delete them all for me. I'm thinking larger video files would be a more ideal exFAT file type and is more how I am using it now.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #14
    In fact, I have now struck out at every single back up solution I have tried. There are a couple that will let you back up to an exFAT partition, but nothing in either Windows or OS X seems to have any idea how to backup exFAT files.

    Simplest thing I can think of is to manually script to copy the files over, but there must be some simple way to do a differential backup. It's not a complex file system, it's just I guess that it is too new for anyone to have coded for it.
     
  15. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #15
    I have a 10.6.5 beta build for support with iOS 4.2 printing. Maybe it showed up because of that?

    [​IMG]


    While we're here, any way to uninstall NTFS-3G? I removed the preference pane and everything but it still shows up in Disk Utility and used to attempt to mount my Windows partition.
     
  16. macrumors G3

    Joined:
    May 10, 2004
    #16
    This is great news.

    But I wouldn't use exFAT for sharing, only for cameras, because I think it's not journaled.
     
  17. macrumors 68020

    mulo

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Location:
    Behind you
    #17
    yes, newer iMacs have also been shipping with that version.

    care to share? :)
     
  18. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #18
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  19. macrumors 601

    ActionableMango

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    #19
    I checked mine, a 2010 MP refurb that arrived last week. Indeed Disk Utility does support exFAT. I am confused why no back up solutions can back up from this format if the OS supports it.
     
  20. macrumors regular

    potentpotable

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Location:
    Toronto
    #20
    Not sure if this helps to shed light on exFat, but I just got a Mac and had to format my WD external HD for use with it (don't want to be limited to copying stuff from the HD to the Mac, of course).

    It works perfectly transferring stuff to and from both my PC andMac.

    And I have my life's work backed up on the HD, so I hope nothing bad happens.:confused:
     
  21. macrumors 65816

    TheStrudel

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2008
    #21
    Isn't it supported now because the SD card slots in newer iMacs and Macbooks now support SDXC? If I had to guess at a reason, that would be it. That might also explain why solutions to back up are half-baked - it's new and that's not something  or anybody else has really had in mind for it.
     
  22. macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
    #22
    It is a BACKUP right, i.e. it exists in 2 places and not only on your external drive? Otherwise it's not a backup and you could lose it all without warning no matter how the drive is formatted!
     
  23. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #23
    I backup to two drives, one bootable, one time machine.
     
  24. macrumors regular

    potentpotable

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Location:
    Toronto
    #24
    Originals are found on my Mac. So if something were to simultaneously happen to both, then I'm screwed.

    Also, I plan on using my exFat external HD as a Time Machine.
     
  25. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2010
    #25
    Now that exFAT is supported in the new 10.6.5 update can i reformat my HDD where MAC OSX is installed to exFAT for better performance??
     

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