How do I format my external HD to FAT32/NTFS?

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by darthvader747, Oct 26, 2007.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2007
    #1
    I was using my external hard drive with my mac and its formatted in the MAC HF(something like that) file system. I would like to format that external hard drive such that the file system is either NTFS or FAT32 so that I can use it on my windows partition running on boot camp. I am asking this question since I am planning to get a new HD for my mac and use the old one with windows.

    Thanks
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Location:
    Leeds, UK
    #2
    It's probably best to format it in FAT32. That way both Mac OS X and Windows can write to it. NTFS is read only in Mac OS X. Remember however, you will be unable to store files larger that 4GB on a FAT32 formatted volume.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2007
    #3
    How do I format my external HD to FAT32/NTFS?

    Thanks for your suggesting that I go with FAT 32, however what application or tool do I use to format my hard drive with FAT32. I read somewhere that bootcamp can do it -but how?
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Location:
    Leeds, UK
    #4
    Disk Utility will do that for you. Just select Erase and choose MS-DOS FAT as your preferred format. It does an even better job than Windows as it doesn't impose an arbitrary volume size limit of 32GB.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2007
  6. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    #6
    erase and reformat

    so erase, means erase right? so if one has a number of files on a drive they were hoping to access they would have to back them up in some manner and then reintroduce them to the drive? or suffer the loss? and one couldn't back them up in any way using the mac because it doesn't recognize them so i would use a windows operating system?
    to cut to the chase i have a bunch of photos i was hoping to access on my sleek new mac
     
  7. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    #7
    Hello,

    I did format my HD from the MAC OS using the version 10.5.4, MS-DOS(FAT) format and it was executed succesfully but unfortunatelly, the HD is not being recognized by Windows XP SP3. Is there any other solution for this? :(
     
  8. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2007
    #8
    MS-DOS(FAT) sounds like fat16, and fat 16 is not annything you want to use.

    But for your problem I would first go yo start -> control pannel -> Administrativ tools -> computer management -> disk utillities and have a look and se what you find. Here you can also format the drive again if you can see it.
     
  9. macrumors 68040

    Neil321

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2007
    Location:
    Britain, Avatar Created By Bartelby
    #9
    Nope it's FAT32
     
  10. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2010
    #10
    Now, when you say store files larger than 4gb, does that mean individual files.
     
  11. macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Tempe, AZ
    #11
    Yes, that would be a limitation of 4GB per file. If you need larger limit for whatever reason, the partition would have to be NTFS.

    And you can actually read and write to NTFS partitions in Mac OS using free software like NTFS-3G.

    However, do note that while it does work in Snow Leopard, it will only run with the 32-bit kernel (no 64-bit kernel support).
     
  12. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2011
    #12
    fat32 formatting on mac osx

    I just formatted my WD My Book Essential 3tb external hard drive to FAT32.
    Go to Applications-Utilities-Disk Utility. And then click on partition and select 1 partition and choose msdos(fat) as your format, click on apply, and that's it. You can use your hard drive with your ps3 now.
     
  13. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2012
    #13
    just formatted my WD My Book Essential 3tb external hard drive to FAT32.

    just formatted my WD My Book Essential 3tb external hard drive to FAT32.
    Go to Applications-Utilities-Disk Utility. And then click on partition and select 1 partition and choose msdos(fat) as your format, click on apply, and that's it. You can use your hard drive with your ps3 now.


    I'VE TRIED THIS ALREADY AND THEN I PUT ONE MOVIE ONTO MY HD IN ORDER TO TEST THIS OUT AND WHEN I CONNECTED MY USB TO THE PS3 IT STILL WOULDN'T READ.
     
  14. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2012
    #14
    Help plz :)

    I have a white Macbook about 3 years old and just recently purchased a Seagate 1TB external hard drive. The guy in the shop told me how to format it for a Mac with simple steps. He told me to format it to FAT32 as then I can switch between Mac & Windows for exchanging files etc.
    However, after I have clicked disk utilities and selected my HD from the left hand side, i then go to 'erase' at the top but under 'volume format' in the drop down box it only gives me the option to click 'MS-DOS (FAT)' along with some others. Is this the correct one even though it doesn't have the '32' ? Will it still work with Windows?

    Also, do I need to select a number of partitions or just leave it as 'current'?

    Thank you!:D
     
  15. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2010
    #15
    Why does it say 'MS-DOS (FAT)' if it is FAT32? FAT normally does not refer to FAT32 but FAT16 or earlier. Why would they mislabel it?
     
  16. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2012
    #16
    exFAT is the answer!

    Guys just forget about using any software to read NTFS and avoid FAT32's file limitations.

    Instead just format all your externals in exFAT. Trust me man, I've formatted all of mine and everything has working seamlessly between my MBP and my PC.

    exFat doesn't restrict file size but is both readable and writable in Mac OS and Windows. The only issue is that it isn't compatible with older versions of Windows. As long as your using XP or above, you're in the clear.
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    #17
    It appears to format intelligently. I formatted an old 512MB flash drive with Disk Utility using MS-DOS (FAT) and it formatted it with FAT16, but I formatted a 8GB flash drive and it formatted it FAT32. Not sure what the threshold is. I don't have anything in between. lol
     
  18. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    #18
    New PS3 Hard Drive

    I have just joined Mac Rumors and I need some help. I have purchased a new Hard Drive, for my Sony PlayStation 3™ 40GB, that has 1 TB (Terabyte). I have about 37 GB to back up on my PS3 for me to make the swap. I have a 320GB external Hard Drive to back it up. I heard that the PS3 system can only read FAT32 Hard Drives so I wanted to change it. I am a Macintosh user and I plan to be for a long time. I heard you guys saying that if you change it to FAT32 that the capacity of the Hard Drive changes to only 32GB. Is that true, or am I reading it wrong? Please help, I'm not very good with electronics and I want this new hard drive to work. Thank you.
     
  19. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2012
    #19
    Formatting WD Passport 1tb for Windows and Mac

    Hi, Have purchased a WesterDigital Passport externalHard Drive to copy Video from another Hitachi Hard Drive. The WD Passport was formatted to fat 32 using the mac, but the WD Passport files or Hard Drive do not show on PC running Windows7. I made sure all video files are under 4gb. The Hitachi HD was done in fat 32 for use on my PS3. The Hitachi drive loads quickly and menu's fill in ok. The WD shows ok on my MAC and also shows on the PS3 but takes forever to load and show in the menu's setup for the PS3.
    Not sure why the Hitachi HD works fine and the WD Passport does not.
    Any suggestions would be really appreciated.
    Thanks.;)
     
  20. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2013
    #20
    I believe the software you mentioned is now available for purchase here (for 25 Euros) and supports all versions of Mac OS X from 10.4 (Tiger) onwards, including of course Mac OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion) with its 64-bit kernel.
     
  21. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2013
    #21
    I used Paragon NTFS for Mac OS X. Worked like a charm. Has a 10 day trial so you can see if it works for you before buying it.

    Didn't even have to read the manual. Installed it and my disk became read/write - just like "normal." $19.95.
     

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