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File format on External Hard drive


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#1
strikermed

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I have some questions. I am buying a 320 gig Western Digital External Hardrive and I have been reading reviews saying it is in FAT 32 format. Now I have read that it allows it to be backward compatible with macs and XP. I do want this, but will it be a problem when I save my information from XP and open it on mac, for instance video files. Also, I am wondering, if I reformat the hard drive, will I be erasing anything that might come on it when I first get it. Here is a link to specify which hard drive I am purchasing: http://www.zipzoomfl...tCode=101251-16 I do like the idea of being able to go back and forth to mac and Windows, but i wonder if I will loose some storage space in the FAT 32 format vs. NTFS. So what I'm really asking is an explanation of the difference in the 2 formats. And what my possibilities are. What would you do with the hard drive?
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#2
shard92

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Well fat32 typically uses larger allocation units then NTFS so although you don't loose space you can potentially end up with more wasted space... Also Not sure if fat32 can address a hard drive that big as one drive.... Been too long don't remember for sure sorry... Also the NTFS is more secure... ( so I'm told ) Something else to possibly consider.... if you use FAT32 it will also be compatible with Linux. While some versions of Linux can read NTFS many have trouble writing to NTFS....
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#3
jaxisland

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I dont use macs so I dont know really anything about them but I do know that the biggest difference is yes the cluster size, FAT has no security so anyone with access to the files can open them, whereas NTFS has security. NTFS supports encryption and compression. Also FAT is more suceptible to disk errors than NTFS.
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#4
Neil Jones

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Out of the box, Mac OS X 10.3 will read your NTFS Data. Won't write, but will read it.
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