Disk Utility allows only FAT16, I need FAT32!!!

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Dirty Harry, Mar 27, 2009.

  1. Dirty Harry macrumors member

    Apr 8, 2004
    Valencia, SPAIN
    I need to format a small pendrive (512 Mb) as FAT32, but the MS-DOS option in Disk Utility is actually creating FAT16. I read somewhere that Disk Utility automatically does FAT16 or FAT32 when choosing MS-DOS depending on the size of the drive. Still, I need my small pendrive to be formated as FAT32, no 16. This was its original format when I bought it!!! I need FAT32 because it's the only format that the USB port of my Hi-Fi system recognizes to play MP3. I checked using FAT16 and it doesn´t work. Is there a way I could "force" a FAT32 format for my 512Mb pendrive under Macos? Maybe a different utility than Apple's Disk Utility? I have an iBook, so no windows. Thank you.:eek:
  2. Dirty Harry thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 8, 2004
    Valencia, SPAIN
    Thank you. Could you help me to write the right command so I make sure I am formatting the pendrive on my usb and not something else?

    I am typing: newfs_msdos -F 32 /dev/disk1s1

    (disk1s1 is supposed to be the usb pendrive according to System Profile)

    but I get "Resource busy". And I get "No such file or directory" if I dismount the pendrive.

    Anyway, why this has to be so difficult for a common user???

  3. Willfon macrumors newbie

    Mar 28, 2010
    root@my-test1:WISTE $ diskutil eraseVolume "MS-DOS FAT16" DEBIAN /Volumes/DEBIAN
    Started erase on disk disk1s1
    Mounting disk
    [ + 0%..10%..20%..30%..40%..50%..60%..70%..80%..90%..100% ] 
    Finished erase on disk disk1s1 DEBIAN
    I think they have wrapped up all the hardware access in tons of disk arbitration stuff so you cant write a new file system unless you have dis^Wunmounted the existing file system and using the finder or disk utility to do that removes all record of the rest of the disk. Just to be smart.

    This works as well but then you have to be pretty sure it is the right disk ;) :
    diskutil eraseVolume "MS-DOS FAT16" DEBIAN /dev/disk1s1 
  4. Dirty Harry thread starter macrumors member

    Apr 8, 2004
    Valencia, SPAIN
    diskutil eraseVolume "MS-DOS FAT32" DEBIAN /dev/disk1s1

    Thank you very much, it worked fine this time! Obviously I got my pendrive named as "DEBIAN", no problem since that can be changed.

    It's been a long time since I asked this one, still I needed the information, thanks.

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