exFAT - shortcomings?

sickbhoy

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 30, 2013
2
0
Hi all.

I recently purchased a 2 TB hard drive for my mac book pro (osx v10.6.8) as my drive was almost full. The hard drive is WD my passport for mac.
I also have a samsung smart tv which I have used with friends hard drives to watch video files, so was eager to do this myself, I currently use a HD cable from my mac book to the hd port.
After uploading some video files to the hard drive my smart tv recognised the drive but would not play any media. After looking at some posts online I reformatted from 'Mac OS Extended (journaled)' to 'Mac FAT' which worked fine for small media files but a lot of files, for example blu rays, are over 4GB and can not be transferred. After further investigation and a lot of confusing reading of partitioning(??) I reformatted again to 'ExFAT'
Hurrah - It is compatible with my mac book and my smart tv and I can transfer files greater than 4GB.
My issue is, I intend to use my hard drive to store other types of files such as word/pages docs, powerpoint presentations and to back up my photographs.
Will exFAT format affect/limit this??
I haven't found much info on ExFAT, what are the disadvantages??

I am not very tech minded , thanks in advance for your help :)
 

juanm

macrumors 68000
May 1, 2006
1,576
2,994
Fury 161
Wikipedia said:
The disadvantages compared to FAT file systems include:

Microsoft has not released the official exFAT file system specification, and a restrictive license from Microsoft is required in order to make and distribute exFAT implementations. Microsoft also asserts patents on exFAT which make it impossible to re-implement its functionality in a compatible way without violating a large percentage of them.[14] This renders the implementation, distribution, and use of exFAT as a part of free or open-source operating systems or of commercial software, for which the vendors could not obtain a license from Microsoft, legally difficult, especially in countries that recognize United States software patents.
Limited support outside Windows and Mac OS X operating systems as of 2012, when most consumer electronic devices could only handle FAT12/FAT16/FAT32, rendering exFAT (and flash memory formats using it) impractical as a universal exchange format.
Some distributions of Linux have begun to include support for exFAT. It is however, only available as a file system in user space, as it is not supported by the kernel.[citation needed]
All Windows NT versions after Windows XP support exFAT. [15] Updates may be required before use.
Windows Vista is unable to use exFAT drives for ReadyBoost. Windows 7 removes this limitation, enabling ReadyBoost caches larger than 4 GiB.[16]
The standard exFAT implementation is not journaled and only uses a single file allocation table and free space map. FAT file systems instead used alternating tables, as this allowed recovery of the file system if the media was ejected during a write (which occurs frequently in practice with removable media). The optional TexFAT component adds support for additional backup tables and maps, but may not be supported.
Support for up to 2,796,202 files per subdirectory only.[1][nb 3] Microsoft documents a limit of 65,534 files per sub-directory for their FAT32 implementation, but other operating systems have no special limit for the number of files in a FAT32 directory. FAT32 implementations in other operating systems allow an unlimited number of files up to the number of available clusters (that is, up to 268,304,373 files on volumes without long filenames).[nb 4]
There you go. For an external drive for everyday use, it's great.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,693
33,582
Boston
My issue is, I intend to use my hard drive to store other types of files such as word/pages docs, powerpoint presentations and to back up my photographs.
Will exFAT format affect/limit this??
I haven't found much info on ExFAT, what are the disadvantages??
exFAT is a decent file system that gives the user cross platform compatibility. It's an old file system that lacks some of the features of newer file systems but for basic data storage its ok.
 

sickbhoy

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 30, 2013
2
0
exFAT is a decent file system that gives the user cross platform compatibility. It's an old file system that lacks some of the features of newer file systems but for basic data storage its ok.
I see , what sort of features am I missing out on by using exFAT?

----------

There you go. For an external drive for everyday use, it's great.
thanks for the feedback
Though in reference to your wiki quote I am not very tech minded so a lot of that did not make much sense.
 

maxanaga

macrumors newbie
Aug 30, 2015
1
0
I see , what sort of features am I missing out on by using exFAT?


looks like you can't have a long name for the drive with exFAT vs Mac OS
----------


thanks for the feedback
Though in reference to your wiki quote I am not very tech minded so a lot of that did not make much sense.
 

Significant1

macrumors 6502a
Dec 20, 2014
796
253
In addition to maflynn's post.
You cannot use it for TimeMachine. It does support permissions via ACL (access control lists). But for basic storage of files, it will be fine.
 
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glenthompson

macrumors 68020
Apr 27, 2011
2,121
222
Florida
As said it does fine for basic storage needs. It is not a robust file system so make sure you have a backup of the files on it.
 
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