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Black Forest
04-16-2012, 03:07 PM
I have a hard drive I need to reformat to Fat32 from NTFS. I am using a PC with Vista 64 bit OS.

Under the administrative tools when I want to reformat it only give me the choice of NTFS in the pull down menu.

So how can I get this drive to have the Fat32 file system on it?

studentjim
04-16-2012, 03:20 PM
If you are using windows vista 64 bit you don't have a choice to the best of my knowledge, but someone with more computer savvy may be of help.

lazlo
04-16-2012, 03:35 PM
They took FAT32 out of the administrative options, but you can still format Fat32 from the command line:

start->run->cmd

format /FS:FAT32 X:

Where X is your drive letter.

Black Forest
04-16-2012, 03:45 PM
Danke! It worked fine Lazlo.

Black_Moons
04-16-2012, 07:17 PM
Whatever you are doing, I pity you :)

Fat32 was the worst file system I ever used. Why just yesterday I had to waste 10 minutes span archiving a 4+ gig file because my MP3 player decided fat32 was good enough for a flash card and wouldn't let me store my 4gb+ file as fat32 does not support files over 4gigs.

oldtiffie
04-16-2012, 08:19 PM
They took FAT32 out of the administrative options, but you can still format Fat32 from the command line:

start->run->cmd

format /FS:FAT32 X:

Where X is your drive letter.

Good one Lazlo.

I seemed to recall that all my flash drives were formatted to FAT32 and I checked and sure enough they are. Format to FAT32 is an option for them on my W7 computer whch will normally re-format NTFS. I have no problems with my 32GB flash drives.

Other then the solution you gave BF would not previous versions of the Windows OS (XP, W2K and others) format to FAT32?

lazlo
04-16-2012, 08:28 PM
I seemed to recall that all my flash drives were formatted to FAT32 and I checked and sure enough they are. Format to FAT32 is an option for them on my W7 computer whch will normally re-format NTFS. I have no problems with my 32GB flash drives.

Right, most thumb drives are pre-formatted FAT32 by convention -- that's what MP3 players, Blu-Ray players, ... are expecting.

But for hard drives, FAT32 is obsolete -- it has a max filesize of 4G and a max partition size of 32G.

If you need to reformat a thumb drive for some reason, you can use the command line, or there are dozens of freeware apps.

oldtiffie
04-16-2012, 09:41 PM
Lazlo.

I can format my thumb drives in FAT32 format - as soon as I insert the thumb drive - W7.

Using my 32MB thumb drive as "K":

W Explorer> "K" drive > Format (options: NTFS and FAT32) - whuich disappears as soon as the thumb drive is withdrawn.

With all SATA HDD's it is only NTFS - as you say.

I am sure tha I could format my IDE HDD's on my W2K and previous computers to NTFS and FAT32 - but not now on my W7 machine.

easymike29
04-17-2012, 05:54 PM
.....But for hard drives, FAT32 is obsolete... a max partition size of 32G.


Lazlo

Not so. I have 500GB Fat32 drives formatted in a single partition.

Gene

lazlo
04-17-2012, 06:30 PM
Lazlo

Not so. I have 500GB Fat32 drives formatted in a single partition.

Well sure, you can use goofy cluster sizes and get to 8 Terabytes, if you wanted to, but it's not useful, you'll segfault most of the disk management and formatting tools, and and no one else will be able to read it :)

Barrington
04-17-2012, 08:01 PM
Windows 98 could use 137GB partitions, but the 32GB 'limit' was introduced in the XP installation process only to 'encourage' new users toward NTFS, although it has always been able to handle much larger FAT32 partitions with no problems.

Cheers

.

lazlo
04-17-2012, 08:15 PM
Windows 98 could use 137GB partitions, but the 32GB 'limit' was introduced in the XP installation process only to 'encourage' new users toward NTFS, although it has always been able to handle much larger FAT32 partitions with no problems.

Don't have time for another HSM Forum flameware, but that's not correct.

Besides the fact that BIOS' of that era didn't support larger than 32GByte partitions (which is why they came out with abominations like LBA), the scandisk and defrag programs that shipped with Win98 were 16-bit, and could only address 4M clusters. So with a stupidly big cluster size of 32KBytes, you could theoretically address 128GByte. But most of your disk space would go to waste, since each of the thousands of little files on your hard drive would occupy 32 KBytes.

More to the point, Microsoft did extend FAT32 with 64-bit File Allocation Tables, Cluster and Cylinder Counts: ExFAT. But nobody uses it.

Barrington
04-18-2012, 05:43 AM
Sorry - I meant 127GB for Windows 98 not 137GB.

No flamewar intended , but you lit the match ;) - I was just responding to:-
But for hard drives,... -- it has a ... max partition size of 32G.Every USB external hard drive I've purchased (Toshibas, up to 500GB - one only a couple of months ago) has been supplied formatted FAT32 - so ???

As regards the 32GB being an artificial installation limit:-
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314463 - "Limitations of the FAT32 File System in Windows XP"

You cannot format a volume larger than 32 gigabytes (GB) in size using the FAT32 file system during the Windows XP installation process. Windows XP can mount and support FAT32 volumes larger than 32 GB (subject to the other limits), but you cannot create a FAT32 volume larger than 32 GB by using the Format tool during Setup. If you need to format a volume that is larger than 32 GB, use the NTFS file system to format it. Another option is to start from a Microsoft Windows 98 or Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me) Startup disk and use the Format tool included on the disk. It's difficult to remember that many were a bit wary of NTFS at the time - if there had been an option to format their spanking new huge disc in FAT32 a lot people would have stuck with what they were familiar with.

Cheers

.

Black_Moons
04-18-2012, 05:51 AM
More to the point, Microsoft did extend FAT32 with 64-bit File Allocation Tables, Cluster and Cylinder Counts: ExFAT. But nobody uses it.

Oh thank god for that.
While I was weary of upgrading to NTFS, it has been a pleasant experience compared to the constant corruption, 'lost clusters' and general screw ups of fat32.

Of course, that said, I have seen NTFS go tits up once or twice and nothing seemed (easily) recoverable. But then, I have seen fat32 go tits up much more often.

oldtiffie
04-18-2012, 10:37 PM
Sorry - I meant 127GB for Windows 98 not 137GB.

No flamewar intended , but you lit the match ;) - I was just responding to:-Every USB external hard drive I've purchased (Toshibas, up to 500GB - one only a couple of months ago) has been supplied formatted FAT32 - so ???

As regards the 32GB being an artificial installation limit:-
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314463 - "Limitations of the FAT32 File System in Windows XP"
It's difficult to remember that many were a bit wary of NTFS at the time - if there had been an option to format their spanking new huge disc in FAT32 a lot people would have stuck with what they were familiar with.

Cheers

.


My memory is a bit hazey as regards FAT32 et al.

My "flash/thumb" (external) USB drives are formatted for FAT32 as supplied and will both run and can be formated FAT32 on my W7 machine but the formatting to FAT32 facility disappears as soon as the Flash/thumb drive is withdrawn.

I have several external USB SATA HDD cases that are connected by USB but are are formatted as NTFS.

I seem to recall that previous Windows could read and perhaps write FAT32 and could format HDD's (IDE) to both FAT32 and normal OS requirements.

Can you please bring me up to date on this please.