NTFS Format TO FAT 32 ON WINDOWS XP

vbimport

#1

I bought a wd 2tb external hard drive today. when i bought it i querried the guy on converting from NTFS to Fat 32 which he said is not a problem. i have been looking close to 2 hours and have not found a suitable solution please please help me. my computer is on xp which seams to be the issue. i want it on fat32 because i watch movies on my playstation 3 and if i can not get it to work it has then became pointless


#2

Hi and welcome to the forum :slight_smile:

You can use the command prompt to do this. The command is [B]convert[/B], so you should type something like this:

[B]convert K: /FS:FAT32[/B]

K: is only an example, you have to use the letter assigned to the external HDD once you connect it to your computer. I can’t remember off hand if you have to type [B]K:[/B] or [B]K[/B] only (without the “:”). Try both and see which one is the right one :slight_smile:

Bear in mind, however, that converting a hard disk partition or volume from NTFS to FAT32 requires that you reformat the partition, which deletes any data on it. Be sure to back up any data you want to keep before you begin.

Moreover, windows doesn’t allow to create FAT32 partitions larger than 32 GB. So if you want to format the entire disk to FAT32, the only reliable way I can suggest at the moment is to use Linux to format the disk. Linux doesn’t have such limitation.

If you don’t have a computer running linux, you can use a Live CD like Knoppix or Ubuntu. Simply, boot your computer from the live CD, then connect the external drive to the PC, and format it to FAT32.

Don’t worry: Live CDs will not change in any way your computer, because everything is done from the RAM and from the CD :slight_smile:


#3

Hi and Welcome!

please check western digital website - I remember they have had a utility that allowed formatting (WD branded) HDDs with FAT32.

The other option would be the command line tool H2format (don’t mind the german language on the website).

Michael


#4

[QUOTE=geno888;2521996]
You can use the command prompt to do this. The command is [B]convert[/B], so you should type something like this:[/QUOTE]No.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314097
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb490885.aspx

[B]Convert[/B]

Converts FAT and FAT32 volumes to NTFS

Michael


#5

Provided there is no data you want to keep on the external harddrive, you should format instead of converting to FAT32.

The builtin tools in Windows XP will, however, not let you format a partition bigger than 32 GB as FAT32, so you’ll need a third-party utility for that purpose.

I haven’t used any of the following tools myself, but found them by googling. Use at your own risk:

FAT32 Format (Windows GUI): http://www.ridgecrop.demon.co.uk/index.htm?guiformat.htm
FAT32format (Windows command-line): http://www.ridgecrop.demon.co.uk/index.htm?fat32format.htm
Fat32Formatter (Windows GUI): http://www.downloadatoz.com/utility_directory/fat32formatter/


#6

There is no converter to FAT32. You can only format in FAT32, and you should only do that on 120GB partitions or less, because your disk will grind to a halt otherwise.


#7

[QUOTE=mciahel;2521997]please check western digital website - I remember they have had a utility that allowed formatting (WD branded) HDDs with FAT32.[/QUOTE]Here it is: http://support.wdc.com/product/download.asp?groupid=111&sid=34&lang=en


#8

The best way is to use the disc that comes with a harddrive. If you don’t have this disc then I would try the WD site as suggested by mciahel.
If the 120GB is the partition limit for FAT32 the I suggest several of those on the 2TB drive.
I had a FAT32 partition on my external at one time that was 80GB so I can’t say what the max is but the 120GB sounds correct. I didn’t need more than 80GB. I have since shrunk that to 20GB. It has one more small FAT32 34MB ,The rest is two NTFS partitions
one 368GB & the other 78GB.This is a 500GB external HDD.
So with 2TB just do some research on the max FAT32 partition you can use & create as many as you can. If you need an NTFS partition on the drive that should work too.


#9

[QUOTE=cholla;2522070]The best way is to use the disc that comes with a harddrive. If you don’t have this disc then I would try the WD site as suggested by mciahel.
If the 120GB is the partition limit for FAT32 the I suggest several of those on the 2TB drive.[/quote]There is no such limit. FAT32 partitions can be much larger.
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314463
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/184006

I had a FAT32 partition on my external at one time that was 80GB so I can’t say what the max is but the 120GB sounds correct.
It isn’t. :smiley: Windows 98 wasn’t able to create larger partitions, according to http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc938432.aspx

Michael


#10

[QUOTE=SIZMO;2521974] i want it on fat32 because i watch movies on my playstation 3 and if i can not get it to work it has then became pointless[/QUOTE]

Fat32 has its limitations on how large a file it will handle and it will not handle a file
that is larger than 4GB which most movie are you will have to compress the movie all
the way down to less than 4GB’s something like 3.8 - 3.9 GB. Why not convert your XP
fat32 to NTFS as the NTFS file system is a lot better than fat32 ever was.


#11

[QUOTE=getit29;2522100]Fat32 has its limitations on how large a file it will handle and it will not handle a file
that is larger than 4GB which most movie are you will have to compress the movie all
the way down to less than 4GB’s something like 3.8 - 3.9 GB. Why not convert your XP
fat32 to NTFS as the NTFS file system is a lot better than fat32 ever was.[/QUOTE]

Actually, the PS3 cannot read NTFS volumes at all. Only FAT or FAT32 is supported through its USB ports. This is a limitation of the console’s internal operating system software. As a result, the only way that the PS3 can read a file that’s larger than 3.99GB is via its Blu-Ray reader.


#12

[QUOTE=RJL65;2522103]Actually, the PS3 cannot read NTFS volumes at all. Only FAT or FAT32 is supported through its USB ports. This is a limitation of the console’s internal operating system software. As a result, the only way that the PS3 can read a file that’s larger than 3.99GB is via its Blu-Ray reader.[/QUOTE]

Hmmmm…did not know that about the PS3 that it only supported fat and fat32
as I do not use any console for gaming as I’m not a big game player myself. lol :bigsmile:


#13

[QUOTE=mciahel;2522088]There is no such limit. FAT32 partitions can be much larger.[/QUOTE] Very true, but it’s absolutely useless to do so and creates lots of overhead.


#14

[QUOTE=Mr. Belvedere;2522210]Very true, but it’s absolutely useless to do so and creates lots of overhead.[/QUOTE]It depends on the purpose. Some devices simply don’t support other file systems - like the PS3 of the OP.

Michael


#15

[QUOTE=SIZMO;2521974]I bought a wd 2tb external hard drive today. when i bought it i querried the guy on converting from NTFS to Fat 32 which he said is not a problem. i have been looking close to 2 hours and have not found a suitable solution please please help me. my computer is on xp which seams to be the issue. i want it on fat32 because i watch movies on my playstation 3 and if i can not get it to work it has then became pointless[/QUOTE]

  1. Right Click “my Computer” ->Manage->+Storage-> Disk management

FAT32 is not particularly useful, as it’s limited to 3.99GB per file, so absolute minimum should be partitioned as FAT32 - lets say 20GB
There’s also a limitation that WinXP can’t format partitions above a certain size as FAT32.

  1. Click on your 2000GB HDD, right click on the partition & select “Delete”.
  2. Right Click on the black “free space” on the HDD and select “new Partition” -> format to FAT32, name it as FAT32Storage, Quick format.
  3. Right Click on the black “free space” on the HDD and Select “new partition” -> Format NTFS, name it NTFSStorage, Quick format.

Done.

The PS3 can see the FAT32Storage part of the drive, but not the NTFSstorage part of the drive.

There is another way to get LARGE files across to your PS3, if you have it networked using wired or wifi.
You can download a free UPNP media server like mediatomb, or PS3 media Server, and then share the folders using those servers with your movies.

The PS3 will automatically detect these UPNP media servers, and let you play most movies this way.

PS3 media server also offers on-the-fly transcoding in case a file is not compatible with the PS3.


#16

Since the OP hasn’t responded I guess this discussion is among those that are interested.
I don’t know how Windows 7 works for this but Vista only has 2 format options in Disk Management .NTFS & exFAT.
I also tried to see if XP on my older computer would do other formats on a partition on my external HDD. It only had NTFS as an option for a partition already NTFS. On a partition already FAT32 it offered FAT32 & NTFS but that would only be helpful to reformat that partition .

So the HDD’s own manufacturers disc becomes even more necessary for formating any partitions to FAT32. Another option would be to use one of the disc partitioning softwares.
For the 4GB file size limit of FAT32 the only time I have found this to be a problem is with a full movie .iso . If you are using DVD complient format then the .vobs are are written in aprox. 1 GB. I guess there are other files that are larger than 4GB I just don’t run into them for anything I do.

For a device that only recognizes FAT32 20GB should be plenty.Unless the device you will be using more than that with needs FAT32.


#17

[QUOTE=mciahel;2522088]There is no such limit. FAT32 partitions can be much larger.
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314463
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/184006

It isn’t. :smiley: Windows 98 wasn’t able to create larger partitions, according to http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc938432.aspx[/QUOTE]

Actually, the 127GB physical hard drive size limit of Windows 98/Me was due to the limitations of the ATAPI/IDE drivers used in those systems. On the other hand, Windows 98 could format or use hard drives and partitions larger than 127GB if the system drive were connected to a separate controller which used SCSI-style drivers (in which case only the controller’s BIOS limits the capacity).


#18

Right on, “converting” the FS from NTFS to Fatxx is madness.
Make a data backup, then format the drive with NTFS and copy the backup data retro.


#19

[QUOTE=chef;2524440]Right on, “converting” the FS from NTFS to Fatxx is madness.
Make a data backup, then format the drive with NTFS and copy the backup data retro.[/QUOTE]You may please read this thread from the beginning and try to find out what the thread starter wants to use this external HDD for.

Michael