External 250GB Western Digital Drive Format FAT32
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Thread: External 250GB Western Digital Drive Format FAT32

  1. #1
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    External 250GB Western Digital Drive Format FAT32

    I purchased and external 250GB Western Digital My Book Esential Hardrive. I noticed that it was formated with FAT32. Do you guys know why would this be formatted as FAT32 and not NTFS? Should I convert it to NTFS or keep it at FAT32?

    THANKS

  2. #2
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    Ext3

  3. #3
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    they sell it like that in case you are using an OS that doesn't support NTFS, like win9x. I would reformat to NTFS.

  4. #4
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    Like Midknyte says, theya re all like that for compatibility. I have my externals all NTFS, but I do keep one 80GB external in FAT32 in case I need it for older systems. Plus, I don't believe Linux will recognize NTFS either...
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by AMDnut
    Plus, I don't believe Linux will recognize NTFS either...
    That may be changing. I'll have to go over to Justlinux and ask. I just set up my daughter's computer after a motherboard failure and rebuild. I put XP on a 20G partition. To partition the rest of the drive, I booted to the latest Ubuntu disk and used the Gnome Partition Manager to do it. And it was able to format it to NTFS.

    By the way, that live Ubuntu disk picked up all the hardware, got the screen res correct on a 19" crt (it was 1024 or even higher) and got onto the internet on a high speed cable connection, all on default settings, on an Asrock KS741GX. Vista, schmista.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for your your help.

  7. #7
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    When formating the drive to NTFS I have the option of "Perform a quick format" or a "Full Format". Do you guys mind explaning what is the difference between these two? Also, which one should I use to format my external hard drive?

    THANKS

  8. #8
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    a quick format just delete the old file allocation table and create a new file allocation table, a full format would also check the hdd for defect. the first time that i format the hdd, i always do a full format.

  9. #9
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    I did the quick format and it took about 1-5 seconds maximum. I was expecting this operation to take about an hour or so as indicated in the Western Digital Website (Answer ID 1021) for a quick format.

    Does 1-5 seconds for a format from FAT32 to NTFS seem reasonable? Somehow I thought it was too quick.

    THANKS

  10. #10
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    sounds a bit fast, but not unreasonable for a quick format. it's the full format that takes a long time, since you are also checking the hdd for error.

  11. #11
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    I am planning to do a full format today. Have you guys had experience with doing a full format on and external USB 2.0, 250 GB Harddrive? Do you guys foresee since its an external drive and 250 GB OR should it be alright?

  12. #12
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    Full format is a waste of time. If you want to test the drive, use the manufacturer's diagnostic like powermax or seatools.

  13. #13
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    instead of a full windows format, try a quick zero-fill instead with the manufacturer's setup disk. it will write zeros to the first section of the disk only, the part that keeps the important directory information. once thats gone it doesnt matter much after that. once the zero-fill is done, you can do a quick windows format to reset the directory.

    every time i used linux it read my NTFS drives just fine. i guess i was just using the right distro's

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by krupted
    every time i used linux it read my NTFS drives just fine. i guess i was just using the right distro's
    Apparently they can all do it, and there is a recent utility that allows a distro to write to ntfs. There are two distros at least that already contain that utility. Give it another year or two and there will likely be many more.

  15. #15
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    and in the mean time i can fire up my windows machine, watch and record tv, play games, and still have hair left on my head

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