FAT32 External Drive?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by steelphantom, Dec 10, 2005.

  1. steelphantom macrumors 6502a

    steelphantom

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2005
    #1
    I recently bought a Maxtor 200GB drive and put it in an external enclosure. I'm using it right now, and have formatted it to the MS-DOS Filesystem (I'm assuming that's FAT32). I have been using it for about a week with no issues, but now that I think about it, since it is a FAT32 drive, won't it have to be defragged every so often? Would I be better of formatting it as a Mac OS Extended (Journaled) drive? If I format it differently, which type of file system would you guys say is the best for an external drive?
     
  2. Danksi macrumors 68000

    Danksi

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2005
    Location:
    Nelson, BC. Canada
    #2
    Depending on what you're planning to use the external drive for?

    I have an external drive that's formatted FAT32, for general backups, as I can then connect it to both a Mac and a PC.

    However for video editing I'm using another external drive that's Mac OS Extended - reason being that FAT32 has a limit of 4Gb per file, which wouldn't work for video editing files.
     
  3. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    Jul 28, 2003
    Location:
    Citizens Bank Park
    #3
    If you are going to use it in both a Mac and PC, I highly recommend FAT32. If you are going to use it Mac only, then go to HFS+.
     
  4. steelphantom thread starter macrumors 6502a

    steelphantom

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2005
    #4
    I'm currently using the drive to store all of my music, video files, photos, ect. Pretty much all of my data except documents and applications are on the external drive. I didn't know about the 4GB file limit; that kind of sucks. Would I ever have to defragment the drive if I leave it as a FAT32 file system?
     
  5. Danksi macrumors 68000

    Danksi

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2005
    Location:
    Nelson, BC. Canada
    #5
    You may not run into problems with final video files, but for video editing at least files can be much bigger than 4Gb - hence my shift to OSX formatted for my Video-scratch disk.
     
  6. steelphantom thread starter macrumors 6502a

    steelphantom

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2005
    #6
    I'm assuming HFS+ is simply the "Mac OS Extended" formatting option in disk utility?
     
  7. khisayruou macrumors 6502a

    khisayruou

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2004
    #7
    yeah, you assume correctly.
     
  8. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    Jul 28, 2003
    Location:
    Citizens Bank Park
    #8
    Yes. Sorry, I should have said that before.
     
  9. steelphantom thread starter macrumors 6502a

    steelphantom

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2005
    #9
    No problem! Everyone here is super-helpful (not to mention super-fast). ;) I think tomorrow I'll reformat the drive to Mac OS Extended (Journaled). Will I see any sort of speed boost over FAT32?
     
  10. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2003
    Location:
    Citizens Bank Park
    #10
     
  11. steelphantom thread starter macrumors 6502a

    steelphantom

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2005
    #11
    Well, I reformatted today and everything works fine. Thanks for all your help!
     
  12. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #12
    Good - now make a Carbon Copy Cloner copy of your OS onto the drive as well, so you can boot from it if everything goes pear-shaped on your main drive.
     

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