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Reformatting external drive from FAT32 to NTFS - needed for backing up data with Windows Live Care

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  • ingejordan Mar 06, 2008

    Sorry, but I searched and clicked everywhere but could not find the solution. Please give more guidance.

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How can i reformat my pc from the beginning?please help me.junito

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Go To My Computer
Right Click on the External Drive
Click on Format

Posted on Mar 04, 2008

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Windows is unable to read the usb


When you formatted the drive for the Mac, you probably used the HFS format. Windows can only read NTFS or FAT formatted drives. You will need to reformat your external drive again. If you use a FAT32 format, all computers will be able to read the drive (Windows, UNIX and Mac - anyway). Note: the FAT32 option does limit the number of files in each directory and the maximum file size.

First back up any files that you have put on the external drive to another disc (your computer's hard disc, for example).
If you are using the M2 external disc for Time Machine backups, you should partition the drive into two sections. Format one to the FAT32 and the other to HFS.

The Disc Utility in OSX can repartition the drive and reformat it. However, sometimes it doesn't correctly format the new partitions. You may need to do some extra step, see http://www.cs.ubc.ca/~pcarbo/macnexstar.html for one set of reformatting steps. In Windows, there is a similar utitily in the Disk Management Control Panel. (Start > Control Panel > System and Security > Administrative Tools > Create and format hard disk partitions (Windows 7)) You can only format the disc to FAT or NTFS with the Windows utility.

Some third-party software is available for changing the partitions on a hard drive formatted for Windows use without losing the data on the disc. I do not know if similar programs exist for OSX.

Some versions of Unix have gparted which will also repartion and reformat a hard disc but can't keep the original data on the drive. (I've used the Windows and Unix partition managers, including Paragon Partition Manager which let me keep my original Windows data on the drive.)

I hope this helps.

Cindy Wells

Apr 12, 2012 | Samsung M2 PORTABLE 320GB USB20 HARD DRIVE...

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How to Convert NTFS External Hard Drive to FAT32?


My friend Michael bought an external hard drive last month, yesterday he ran to me and ask how to convert external hard drive from NTFS to FAT32 safely and easily? I was so curious about why does he want to convert NTFS to FAT32; he said NTFS partition can't be read by DOS system. Since protecting data and files, I recommend him to convert external hard drive from NTFS to FAT32 with a third-party software-AOMEI Partition Assistant, which can convert hard drive from NTFS to FAT32 without data loss.

To computer users, NTFS and FAT32 are not strange. But seldom of them can tell what the difference between them. NTFS and FAT32 to partition are what DOC and TXT to text. In text, the file with DOC format can't be read by TXT application. Similarly, in some condition, not all files in different formatted partition can be read by same application. First, you'd better know some knowledge about NTFS and FAT32.

A Brief introduction of NTFS and FAT32

About FAT32

FAT 32 is one of partition format in windows system. It has 32bit file table, which strengthen FAT32's management to partition, and break through the limitation of 2GB space in every partition. Since the production cost of hard drive decreasing, the volume capacity is increasing. After applying FAT32 partition format, a big volume hard drive can be definite as a partition but not be divided into multiple partitions. It is good for management to hard drive. Now, FAT32 is replaced by NTFS.

About NTFS

NTFS is standard file system after Windows NT, 2000, XP, server 2003, server 2008, Vista, and 7. It replaces FAT to offer file system for Microsoft. NTFS make advanced on FAT and HPFS, such as to support metadata.
The difference between NTFS and FAT
As mentioned above, NTFS and FAT both are file system. However, NTFS is produced late than FAT32, but NTFS is more advanced in technology. In summary, the specific distinction are following below:
NTFS can support up to 64GB single file and 2048GB partition. FAT32 supports up to single file with 4GB and partition with 32G.
NTFS does not need Defragment your hard disk.
NTFS support to compress partition, folders and files.
NTFS takes a little cluster, which can help to manage space of hard drive effectively, and avoid wasting space of hard drive at the most extent.
In NTFS partition, you can share sources, folders and set access permissions on files. It is more secured than FAT32 partition.
How to know which partition format is suitable for you
As mentioned above, NTFS and FAT32 have its own advantages. When we choose which file system, you should consider the factors below:
Computer is installed with single system, or multiple systems.
The number and capacity of local installed hard disk.
Whether has consideration about security or not.
If computer is installed single system, and there is security to consider, you can select FAT32. Or NTFS is not bad choice absolutely.
Why need to convert NTFS External Hard Drive to FAT32?
NTFS and FAT32 are two different types of file systems, and both of them are commonly used and contain different characters. You may make conversions between the two types, and here we got several cases that you need to convert external hard drive to FAT32:
If your external hard drive is formatted in NTFS, you would not be able to access some files from DOS mode or Windows 9X, then you need to covert external hard drive to FAT or FAT32.
NTFS can't be recognized by many devices, such as Xbox 360, PS3, etc. in that case, you have to convert the external hard drive to FAT32 so that it can work with your devices.
There are more situations in which you need to convert external hard drive to FAT32, and there are different ways which you may realize the goal.
Methods to convert NTFS External hard drive to FAT32
At present, there are two main ways that you may convert external hard drive to FAT32, one is to convert to FAT32 with Windows built-in Disk Management, and another one is to convert to FAT32 with third-party software like AOMEI Partition Assistant. Let's see the details:

Method1: Convert an External Hard Drive by reformatting

1. Open the Disk Management in Windows.
2. Right click on the external hard drive and select "Format..." in the drop-down menu.
3. Select "FAT32" in the "File system" line and then choose "Quick format".
4. Finally click "Start" to format, and this process may cost you minutes.
Note: If the drive is larger than 32GB, the "FAT 32" option would be invalid and once format, the information or data in the external hard drive will disappear. So, backup the data or partition if necessary and you need to know how to convert hard drive larger than 32GB into FAT32.

Method2: Convert an External Hard Drive without formatting

You can download the third-party software to convert external hard drive from NTFS to FAT32, what is the most advantage is that convert NTFS to FAT32 without data loss. Comparing with disk management in computer, the third-party software will save your time and money. You don't need to buy other external hard drive to store data, just for converting partition format. Of the third-party software, AOMEI Partition Assistant is good choice. The specific introduction of how to convert NTFS external hard drive to FAT32.

As a kind of advanced partition software, AOMEI Partition Assistant can easily convert an external hard drive to FAT32, and you can also convert an external hard drive larger than 32GB into FAT32. This software is running well with Windows platform including Windows 2000, XP, Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8. Both 32-bit and 64-bit Windows editions are supported. With its help, you need no to format your external hard drive and thus you can convert NFTS to FAT32 without data loss. Now, you may download AOMEI Partition Assistant Pro Edition and have a try.

source from
How to Convert NTFS External Hard Drive to FAT32

on Dec 29, 2017 | Computers & Internet

1 Answer

I backed up files from computer to external hard drive and when i go to use files from external hard drive it dos not read any of the files. How can i reformat the external hard drive with out losing the...


Unfortunately, it is impossible to reformat a drive and not lose the data that is stored on it.
I would suggest formatting the drive as NTFS if you are using Windows or HFS if you are using a Mac and then use the software that was included on the drive to backup your computer.
Be sure to copy the software that came ON the external drive to your computer before reformatting. If you are unable to find the software on the drive, you will have to buy the software from Memeo or contact Western Digital for assistance: http://www.memeo.com/choose_backup.php

May 08, 2011 | Western Digital My Book Essential 1TB...

1 Answer

I have an iomega eGo portable hard drive - i am able to load my music and files onto it from my pc - but when I plug it into my android superpad tablet, it tells me its damaged and that i need to reformat...


What is the format system for the external HDD? Is it NTFS or FAT?

If it is formatted on a PC then it might be NTFS and android will not recognise NTFS. You might have to plug it back into the pc and change the format system by reformatting the external HDD in FAT32 or exFAT.
To format the HDD (Hard disk drive) plug it into windows and when it appears on the screen (This Pc or My Computer screen) next to your C: drive, right click the HDD and select format and when the format window opens select the "File system" drop down menu and change it from NTFS. Then format it and plug it into your tablet to test it.

Oct 07, 2017 | Computers & Internet

1 Answer

If you are running your computer under ntfs should your external harddrive be formatted the same instead of fats32. If it does can I move my back up from the external hard drive and move it back after...


The external hard drive can remain formatted as FAT32. NTFS and FAT32 are the file systems used by the individual disk drives, and do not effect the data being read or written (i.e., you can transfer data between the two with no worries about compatibility). There ARE differences, however, and many would suggest using NTFS to avoid some limitations with FAT32. For example, FAT32 drives have problems with individual files over 4GB. Formatting in NTFS is definitely recommended for people storing large files like video and other media files.
Yes, you can move any data you have off of your external hard drive (to your system hard drive or another external you use temporarily), format your external hard drive with NTFS, and then transfer your backups and other data back to your newly formatted external drive.
You can also convert the drive to NTFS; but I recommend backing up the data first anyway in case of (rare) problem during conversion. Here is a link that has directions for both scenarios (scroll down for conversion info) for Windows XP. http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/setup/tips/advanced/ntfs.mspx
The process to convert is similar for Vista and 7; here are the instructions from MS: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-vista/Convert-a-hard-disk-or-partition-to-NTFS-format

Feb 02, 2011 | Western Digital My Book Essential Edition...

1 Answer

How can I format my Screenplay Director?


Formatting the Data Partition

The data partition on the ScreenPlay Director is formatted with an NTFS file system and will appear as a read-only volume under Mac OS X unless special software is installed on the Mac. If you need to transfer files to the ScreenPlay Director by direct USB connection on a Mac, you must reformat the data partition to FAT32 (see instructions below).

NOTE: On a network connection, Mac OS will see the ScreenPlay Director as a shared SMB volume. This means you can use the network to copy files from a Mac to the ScreenPlay Director without changing the format from NTFS to FAT32. (Recommended if available.)

If you reformat the ScreenPlay Director data partition for use with a Windows PC, it is recommended that you use the Windows format utility to reformat with NTFS. Right click on the drive letter for the data partition and select Format.

CAUTION!

  • Do NOT change the partitioning on the ScreenPlay Director as this will remove the firmware that enables the ScreenPlay Director to communicate with your TV set. Only media files stored on the active data partition can be viewed or played on a TV.

  • Formatting the data partition will erase all existing data! If you have files on the ScreenPlay Director you want to save, move them to another drive or volume before reformatting.

May 19, 2010 | Iomega ScreenPlay

1 Answer

WD 1tb external hard drive not showing up


Fat32 has never been the safest format to use with windows xp. Try using a NTFS formatter or even the windows bootable disc would work.

Dec 22, 2009 | Western Digital My Book Essential Edition...

1 Answer

My new 500 G external hard drive seems to limit the file size under 5 G. Is there somewhere I can reset this to larger file size?


A disk may be formatted using different file systems. The ones used by Windows PCs are FAT32 (an extension of the old MS-DOS FAT) and the newer NTFS.

If the drive is formatted as FAT32, the maximum file size is 4.294 million bytes (some systems report this as 4.294 GB; it is actually 4 GB minus one byte).

If this is the case (Start -> Run Command -> DISKMGMT.MSC and look for your external drive, it will say something like 489 GB NTFS or 489 GB FAT32), my suggestion is to back it up somewhere else and reformat it as NTFS. There also are utilities to convert FAT32 into NTFS, but if anything goes wrong during the conversion, you can say goodbye to all your data.

Note that you won't be able to access a NTFS formatted external drive except from Windows PCs (and most Linux, usually read only), while FAT32 disks are readable from Mac OS X too.

Nov 03, 2009 | Acomdata HybridDrive E5 Hard Drive

1 Answer

Reformatting an external hard drive


Id you have a xp disk when it loads it will ask you how do you want to set up the drive even though you have and external drive on your computer in the my computer icon Right click and open manage open disk management and you should see your usb drive right click on the drive and you should see format it has a dropdown menu check quick format and click ok and it will start to format the drive make sure you chose ntfs in the drop down menu .good luck

Apr 08, 2009 | Toshiba 250GB TOSHIBA USB 2.0 PORTABLE...

2 Answers

Why won't My external Hard drive work on a Macintosh


You probably formatted it with an NTFS filesystem. The Mac won't read NTFS drives. You will need to reformat the drive (after backing up the data that's on it) with a FAT32 filesystem. AFAIK FAT32 is the only filesystem that can be read by both Mac and Windows.

Dec 04, 2007 | Western Digital 250GB ELEMENTS EXTERNAL...

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