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  1. #1
    New 300gb External HDD, PLEASE Help me format it!
    Ok I got a doosie of a question...

    got a 300gb maxtor HDD for xmas, external, usb2/firewire. I have this PB15 which I am on now, and then I have a PC i want to hook it to. So my question is, how do I make an 80gig partition on it for my mac, and then do all the rest for my PC? I have tried to use Disk Utilities, but without much success.

    I've partitioned and formated the volume on mac, then plug it to the PC and then the PC doesnt seem to recognize any of the formatting when i plug in the drive into the PC. So i then used the Disk Management part of windows to make 2 partitions and formatted them to NTFS, figuring I could use the disk utilites program on the mac to reformat one of the partitions to macOS... Well when i try to format it wants to reformat BOTH partitions to macOS, not just the one i have selected.

    Someone has to know how to do this (the easy way) please let me know.

    thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Wait, you want to move it between the two computers? Can't you just leave it unformated?

  3. #3
    uhh if i leave it unformatted windows doesnt recognize it. And I am not aware if NTFS works correctly with mac

  4. #4

    Macman's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 30, 2004
    San Antonio, Texas
    PowerMac G4 Cube 450mhz 832mb
    it needs to be formatted as fat32 I think to be read on both mac and pc.

  5. #5
    yeha i've now researched the **** out of this and theres no way to make this work how i want to make it work. ****.

  6. #6
    No there is a way. Like Macman said you need to format it to fat32. You won't be able to partition it though. But both computers will recognise it. I use flash disks in my Mac and pc all the time.

  7. #7
    Yep, I got a firewire drive for xmas too (160GB) - I learned that fat32 is the way to go. You have a few options...

    * Partition & format it in Windows but be stuck with a max. 36GB FAT32 partition
    * Format it as "MS-DOS" (=FAT32) on the Mac but be stuck with having the whole drive as FAT32 (for whatever reason, Disk Utility won't let you format individual partitions to MS-DOS)
    * Get Partition Magic for the PC and have full control - create your FAT32 partition at any size, have the rest as HFS+ etc.
    * Format it all as HFS+ (Mac) and buy some software such as MacOpener for the PC to access it.

  8. #8
    yeha i got partition magic on PC... I formatted the drive to fat32 on one 80gb partition and the rest is all NTFS... when I plug into the mac i cant seem to copy certain files to teh drive. I get error about "can not copy the file "icon" yaddayaddayadda"

    any ideas? Seems to work mostly alright otherwise.

    Also is the Firewire or the USB2 better? Cuz i have both on my mac and my pc. So whats more consistantly faster?

  9. #9

    shaun89's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 10, 2004
    I thought FAT32 didn't support that much disk space...

  10. #10
    FAT32 supports something like 3TB. It's only Microsuck that nerfed the format function in WinXP because they want people to use their closed NTFS file system and be restricted to Windows (surprise surprise)

    The Apple disk utility, or Partition Magic, or anything other than XP will format FAT32 past XP's 36GB limit (and XP will happily read/write to it)

  11. #11

    shaun89's Avatar
    Member Since
    Apr 10, 2004
    Alright. Thanks for that.

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