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USB Disk vs. USB Stick

Posted on 2012-03-27
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Last Modified: 2012-03-31
Hi Experts,

Can someone explain me the difference between an USB memory stick and an external USB Hard disk. Yes I can see the difference (in model and size) :-)

But some hardware can read memory, but refuse to read an USB disk. e.g. my hard-disk recorder, my car stereo. How can these kind of hardware recognize the difference and can I do something to let the HD act as a memory stick?

Thanks,
Murphey
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Comment
Question by:theo kouwenhoven
7 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:l33tf0b
ID: 37774106
Well there are different classes of USB as well as different power consumptions.  Different drivers / loaders will used depending on the device.

Read more here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Serial_Bus
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Expert Comment

by:Fox85
ID: 37774110
And there can be different file system as well :)
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Expert Comment

by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 37774148
As Fox85 said, there are different file systems.  Windows can't read Linux or Mac file systems you might find on a hard drive without a special driver software.  But most USB Memory Sticks are formatted with FAT32 Windows/DOS format to give them a format that almost all systems can read.  If you reformat a memory stick to a Linux or Mac format, Windows won't be able to read it.
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Author Comment

by:theo kouwenhoven
ID: 37774318
Thanks :-)

The USB Hard disk has his own external power.

Yes I understand the part of the Filesystem, but we are not talking about Windows of Linux Systems, but about a Philips HD-Recorder and a Car audio system.
The last one is the most important:
It recognize the disk because the display shows (No media files found on USB Device),
So I can try to change the format from NTFS to FAT32.

(I also tried to find-out what the max supported Size is for the Car audio, but it seems that nobody knows)

Thanks (let you know the result),
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LVL 83

Expert Comment

by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 37774498
What model is the Car audio system device?  Some devices like that do use a Linux file system.  You should be able to look at "Properties" and see what file system Windows thinks is there.

I found two pages that said that the Phillips HD Recorders use FAT32 formatting.
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Author Comment

by:theo kouwenhoven
ID: 37774612
Fat32 format for a 120Gb HD is not possible so that option is not solving my problem,
How do they do that with a 128 GB Memorystick ?

I will try to get one to test if that is compattibel with my car's audio.
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Accepted Solution

by:
Dave Baldwin earned 200 total points
ID: 37774656
FAT32 will support larger sizes than Windows OS will allow for it, up to 2047GB.  Swissknife http://download.cnet.com/CompuApps-SwissKnife-V3/3000-2248_4-10070864.html will format the larger disks for you.  Here also: http://www.compuapps.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=126&Itemid=190  It is also what someone used to replace the harddisk in their Phillips unit: http://forum.videohelp.com/threads/311434-I-fixed-my-Philips-DVDR-3455H-dvd-hdd-recorder

There are some other programs that will do it also.
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