Solved

Can a Hard Drive be formatted by USB, or...???

Posted on 2007-11-16
10
267 Views
Last Modified: 2010-04-03
I need to format a 160GB notebook hard drive to put into a special USB enclosure that has the ability to transfer data from Flash memory to the drive.  I don't have ready access to a desktop PC which I could use a normal IDE connection to format the drive.  I have a number of USB 2.0 enclosures, but don't know how.  This drive needs to be formatted in FAT32 so it can be read by MACs as well as PCs.
0
Comment
Question by:gzembow
[X]
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
10 Comments
 
LVL 39

Accepted Solution

by:
PUNKY earned 168 total points
ID: 20303570
You can always put the drive into usb enclosure and use any PC available to format it.
0
 
LVL 88

Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 166 total points
ID: 20303576
There's no problem formatting drives attached via USB to fat32. If the Host OS you are formatting from is XP, then you'll only be able to make fat32 partitions of max 32GB Size, so then you'd require a 3rd party utility like Acronis Disk Director Suite to make larger partitions. Don't forget that if you use fat32 you will be limited to filesizes not larger than 4GB.
0
 

Author Comment

by:gzembow
ID: 20303713
Thanks to both of you for your fast posts.  While my computers are PCs running XP, I have access to a MAC running OSX 10.4 - does that have the option of creating the partition correctly so the drive is readable to MACs and PCs?  I don't have Acronis Disk Director, but do have Acronis True Image.  Does that work as well?  Or are there any freeware utilities that do the same thing? Is there any other options?

Are the steps to use USB to format the drive as simple as connecting the new blank drive and plugging it into a USB port and then use the Disk Management (Administrative) Tool to format it?
0
Free eBook: Backup on AWS

Everything you need to know about backup and disaster recovery with AWS, for FREE!

 
LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 20303810
I don't think true image can partition and format a disk.

I don't know OSX enough to be sure, but I think you should be able to format a disk with fat32 with it. Maybe you need a 3rd party tool for it.

You could also try using bootit-ng to format the USB drive. It boots from CD or floppy, and the trial version has all functions enabled. When it asks if you want to install it say no (Press ESC), then select partition work and chek if the USB drive is seen. If not, go back to settings and enable USB2 mode, then return to partition work, and now select the USB drive and use create to create the partition and format it to fat32.

http://terabyteunlimited.com/
0
 
LVL 95

Assisted Solution

by:Lee W, MVP
Lee W, MVP earned 166 total points
ID: 20304339
MacOS can format FAT32 but I'm almost positive it CANNOT format NTFS.  For information on formatting FAT32, see:
http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20030613121738812&query=format+FAT32

(Note: the instructions in the link are for creating TWO partitions, one Mac, one FAT32.  Just don't create the Mac and make it one large FAT32 partition).

0
 

Author Comment

by:gzembow
ID: 20304389
I will try those options and post the results.  But to simplify which format to use, which format do all the commercially available external drives sold by Maxtor, Western Digital, SimpleTech and the others use that can be accessed by MACs and PCs?  FAT32?
0
 
LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 20304400
They'd have to use fat32. NTFS can only be used by windows based on NT. Other OS's often only have reading support at the most (Linux can meanwhile also write to ntfs, but it isn't recommended for use). The only other filesystem that m$ can use is fat...
0
 
LVL 1

Expert Comment

by:Computer101
ID: 20521428
Forced accept.

Computer101
EE Admin
0

Featured Post

Free Tool: Path Explorer

An intuitive utility to help find the CSS path to UI elements on a webpage. These paths are used frequently in a variety of front-end development and QA automation tasks.

One of a set of tools we're offering as a way of saying thank you for being a part of the community.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

I previously wrote an article addressing the use of UBCD4WIN and SARDU. All are great, but I have always been an advocate of SARDU. Recently it was suggested that I go back and take a look at Easy2Boot in comparison.
When we purchase storage, we typically are advertised storage of 500GB, 1TB, 2TB and so on. However, when you actually install it into your computer, your 500GB HDD will actually show up as 465GB. Why? It has to do with the way people and computers…
This video teaches viewers how to encrypt an external drive that requires a password to read and edit the drive. All tasks are done in Disk Utility. Plug in the external drive you wish to encrypt: Make sure all previous data on the drive has been …
This tutorial will walk an individual through the process of installing the necessary services and then configuring a Windows Server 2012 system as an iSCSI target. To install the necessary roles, go to Server Manager, and select Add Roles and Featu…

756 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question