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  1. Member lordhutt's Avatar
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    Ok, I bought a WD 1TB external to do some archiving with secondary backups to dvd's.

    Anyway, after getting about 500-600 GB of data copied to this this I discovered it is formatted in fat32 so I can't copy any files larger than 4 gig.
    Is there any reason why they would have their drives formatted like that...why would anyone use fat32 anymore???
    I just assumed it would be NTSC since its been around for years.

    So, can I switch formats safely without any threat of data loss?

    Thanks.
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  2. Banned
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    External drives are sometimes connected to DVD players that have USB slots. I've never heard of a DVD player that supported anything but FAT32 through USB. This is 100% because of Microsoft's licensing requirements for NTFS, which is what you mean instead of the very unfortunate typo of "NTSC". NTSC is a video standard, not a file system. Yes, you have learned the hard way about the downside of FAT32. There is a tool under Windows 2000 and XP to convert disk drives from FAT32 to NTFS, but while it should, in theory, not cause data loss, neither I nor Microsoft can give you a 100% guarantee about this. Although low, the probability of something going wrong and corrupting or losing data is non-zero.
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  3. Member lordhutt's Avatar
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    Hey I did type NTSC...so many acronyms!!

    The externals USB drives do support NTFS though as I have a few others that I did convert. I just forgot when I got this one.

    I do have secondary backups of everything on other drives and discs but I don't want to take the chance and have to go through the hassle of getting everything back.

    I will probably acquire a second 1tb drive...make it NTFS ....copy mine to it....format mine to NTFS....copy back....pain in the ass!!!

    Thanks for the help anyway but the more I think about it I don't want to take chances of screwing it up.
    Just want to get it done right so I can stick it in the fire safe and forget about it!
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    I have used this method to convert many drives to NTFS with NO loss of any data.

    Q: Is it possible to convert a FAT32 Hard Drive to NTFS without losing all data on the
    drive? I like to change from FAT32 to NTFS, my operating system is Windows XP PRO,
    how can I do that? Without the lost of my programs?

    A: Standard Windows utility that is called CONVERT serves this purpose

    Just go to the Command Prompt and execute the command:

    C:\> CONVERT C: /fs:ntfs

    Where C: is a name of the drive you want to convert.

    After machine re-boot conversion process will start and you'll
    have your FAT32 converted to NTFS without of data loss.
    When you restart it should run and convert the drive you chose, although i have never used a USB external drive but i would imagine it should work fine as long as it's plugged in.
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  5. Member Prot's Avatar
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    Ditto here. Forgot to check in beginning how the WD 1TB drive was formatted and found out when I tried to transfer a 4+ gig file over. I did convert to NTFS with no troubles, then continued with file transfers.
    TANSTAAFL
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  6. Member lordhutt's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Prot
    Ditto here. Forgot to check in beginning how the WD 1TB drive was formatted and found out when I tried to transfer a 4+ gig file over. I did convert to NTFS with no troubles, then continued with file transfers.
    You converted with files already on the drive?
    Which method did you use?
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    Originally Posted by SCDVD
    Hmmm.... that look's amazingly similar to what i posted 8)
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  9. Member lordhutt's Avatar
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    Yeah, I'm just scared to do it!!!!

    **** it....gonna do it....will post my results.


    EDIT>>>>>>>>
    Well, that didn't work.

    Got this:

    This drive is dirty and cannot be converted. You will need to clear the dirty bit on this drive by running CHKDSK /F or allowing AUTOCHK to run on it the next time you reboot.
    The conversion failed.
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    As it says, the disk is "dirty" (maybe not ejected properly before disconnecting ... so possible errors in FAT32 structure), so it wants you to do a CHKDSK first before converting the drive.

    So, fire up a Command Prompt and type (replacing D: with your USB drive letter)

    CHKDSK D: /F

    After that's done, give it another go!
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  11. Member lordhutt's Avatar
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    Got her!!

    Converted and working fine with no data loss.

    Thanks all.
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    Cool Beans!!!!

    I know, the first time i tried it i was nervous as hell!!!!!

    Tried it on a drive that i backed up to another HDD and it worked, but then the first couple of drives after that i was still nervous... with my luck i'd be the one person it would wipe everything out on
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