USB FlashDrive inconsistency problem

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by diazj3, Sep 28, 2011.

  1. diazj3 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #1
    So, I originally posted this in the OS X forums, but after nearly 200 views and not one single response, I'll try again here since the problem is in a MP.

    Purchased a 16GB Patriot Exporter USB flash drive to use it for OS installation / portable booting on my 2009 MP running OS X 10.6.8...

    When I format it in my 2009 MP to Mac OS X Extended (Journaled), the size remains basically unaffected at around 15.5GB free. BUT... when I partition it as GUILD (1 partition) to make it bootable, the available space reported by disk utility drastically goes down to around 10GB. The weird thing is that Disk Utility reports what seem to be inconsistencies in the available space - see the screenshots below.

    I've tried everything - reformat the drive with Patriot's low level format tool in windows to bring it to its original settings, empty the trash, secure-erase it with DriveGenius... nothing seems to work. I wonder if I'm doing something wrong, or if the drive is defective... >5GB lost space is too much I guess...

    Erase.png Finder.png Partition.png


    any ideas? Thanks!
     
  2. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #2
    Hmmm...

    Yeah, you shouldn't be losing that much space on the flash drive. Seems bizarre to me. Did you buy the flash drive locally? My experience with Patriot products (flash drives, memory cards, etc.) has been kind of a mixed bag.

    If you bought it locally, you should be able to exchange and try a different brand (like PNY, Kingston, etc.) to see if the problem duplicates itself.
     
  3. vitzr macrumors 68030

    vitzr

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    California
    #3
    I have experienced that same issue. Tried it on my PC to double check & got the same result +/-

    So I returned it for SanDisk, no problems.
     
  4. diazj3 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #4
    Thank you for your answers. That's what I thought - a faulty drive. Bought it on Amazon, so I'll try to get a refund that way, or a replacement via Patriot, whom I have already contacted, and seem helpful enough.

    Can you recommend a thumb drive of this size that will serve the booting purpose more reliably? thanks
     
  5. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #5
    Well, how much did you pay for the Patriot stick? It would help to get an idea of what your spending boundaries are.

    I did find this one on Amazon, which is a SanDisk at a very good price.

    I've never had issues with USB sticks from good brands like SanDisk and PNY.
     
  6. xgman macrumors 601

    xgman

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2007
    #6
    I agree. Flash drives are hit or miss. I have 2 Patriot Supersonic USB 3 drives. One is great, the other likes spinning beach balls for some reason and is on the way back to Newegg. I have taken to using exFat to be able to go back and forth between win and Mac without having to use 3rd party drivers and ExFat lets you store bigger files than 4GB now and reads native on Win 7 and SL & Lion.
     
  7. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020

    CaptainChunk

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #7
    I like ExFAT a lot for that same reason.

    But I think the OP's intended use for this flash drive is to have an OS install/boot drive, which would require Mac formatting.
     
  8. diazj3 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2008
    #8
    Thanks guys,

    I payed 27 bucks for it. For what I've seen, the price per GB is very similar across most brands in that size range - unless one is looking for a designer style drive. In my case, I only need it to be fast and bootable.

    I'll check them out. My experience with SanDisk is not great - in the past - 5-7 years) the ones I owned became progressively slow.


    Correct: I need it to hold a OS X Install Disk, or a very basic OS X installation for emergency maintenance . Otherwise this Patriot XT drive would be excellent.

    I asked the support team at Patriot if this was an isolated issue (loosing so much space with the Mac OS X GUILD format), or if it was a generalized behavior with these drives. They said isolated, and are being very helpful in the RMA process. I'll give that a try and buy another from another brand just to play it safe.

    Thanks again for your help.

    cheers!
     

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