Why doesn't my external drive accept any files that are larger than 4 or 5 GB?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by johnbro23, Feb 18, 2008.

  1. johnbro23 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2004
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #1
    If I try to use my external for any large files (say with HD video), it stops writing after any file gets to be around 4 or 5 gigs (its hard to tell exactly). Any idea what this problem is? If its a formatting issue, is there a way to reformat while keeping the files on the drive?
     
  2. swiftaw macrumors 603

    swiftaw

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    #2
    Is you drive formatted as FAT32?

    If so, it is a file size limit of FAT32, which is around 4GB I think.
     
  3. johnbro23 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2004
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #3
    You must be right, since it is FAT32. Can I reformat without having to move data to another drive? I don't think I can find any more space to do that on my other drive. Also, if I reformat, will I be able to use the drive with a PC? With Parallels?
     
  4. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #4
    Reformatting = destroying all files on the drive.

    Your choices are limited. If you format NTFS from within Windows, the Mac OS will not be able to write to it.

    If you format HFS+ (Mac OS Extended) then Windows will not be able to read or write.

    If you format FAT32, you can.t have files larger than 4 Gb.
     
  5. johnbro23 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2004
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #5
    Well that sucks. What is wrong with these programmers that they can't decide on a standard format for a drive? Seems like a pretty basic decision to me.
     
  6. jeremy.king macrumors 603

    jeremy.king

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    #6
    You can with MacFuse and NTFS-3G

    You mean for free. You can, however, invest in MacDrive and read/write HFS+ drives.

    You can convert FAT32 to NTFS without losing files from a Windows machine. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307881
     

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