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Member Since: Sep 21, 2009
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Posts: 4
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Mac Specs: Macbook Pro 13" - Mid 2009 Model - Core2Duo 2.26GHz, 2GB RAM, 160GB HDD, nVidia Integrated GPU

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Hi Forum,

I am a switcher (and happy) and still encounter loads of windows machines in my day to day work (in the IT field)

I recently purchased a 500GB External hard drive. I plugged the drive in and was excited to see that the HDD was formatted in FAT32. So I was happy because of FAT32 being an open format which would be read/write compatible with no matter what OS I encountered and had to work on.

My question firstly, I thought that FAT32 wasn't implementable on any drive over 40GB ???
Secondly, is there any problem with running FAT32? Isn't is a very old and antiquated format?
Thirdly and lastly, is there any speed decrease with having a 500GB drive in FAT32 format? (shouldn't I rather split the drive 50/50 and have one for Windows Things in NTFS (which I can READ under Mac) and 250GB in a Mac HDD Format?

I am busy transferring data a large amount of data to the drive on a Windows machine and the transfer rate is bobbing between 11megabytes/serc and 13megabytes/sec
Now, given that this is a 2.5" hard drive (USB powered) I can understand that there MIGHT be some type of performance decrease when compared to a 3.5" external powered drive. But to put it into perspective, I am used to seeing speeds of 25 to 35 megabytes/sec on the 3.5" drives (running NTFS)

Now, my OFFICIAL last question ( ) - is this speed decrease because it is running FAT32 on such a large partition or because this is just normal with the smaller 2.5" external USB powered drives?

Your expert opinions and answers appreciated and thanks in advance,

Chris Grant

Chris Grant
NetDynamix - Work, Play, Dream

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