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  1. #1
    problems with USB memory stick compatibility
    Don't know if this is best place to ask but hope so. It is something I should probably know but don't, so here goes.

    -saved about 40+ gb data on Kingston DTSE9 formatted IPV Mac OS Extended (Journaled), documents pdf, docx, mp4, jpeg - mostly in subject folders. Lent disk to friend with PC, who insisted there was nothing on the disk and claims not to have reformatted or done anything at all. When I got disk back it was formatted exfat and showed as empty.

    I have managed to recover most, maybe all, of data but want to know what happened, what was wrong and how to correct, and avoid problems in future.

    Your advice is greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Carmen

  2. #2
    problems with USB memory stick compatibility
    Rod Sprague's Avatar
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    problems with USB memory stick compatibility
    Well I donít want to cause friction between you and your friend but your USB stick was almost certainly reformatted and consequently erased by that personís PC. If a Mac OS Extended (Journalled) drive is connected to a PC it will say it is unreadable and offer to reformat.
    If you want to share info between a Mac and a Windows PC simply use Disk Utility to format your USB stick as FAT 32.


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    I used to be conceited but now I'm perfect.

  3. #3
    Thanks, Rod. Now that I know, I will reformat disks in future to a "Hybrid" type before saving anything. Just one thing - to reformat, disc utility "Erase" does not offer FAT 32 - only MS-DOS FAT and exFAT - plus, of course the mac formats. Is there some other way to reformat to get FAT 32?

    BTW - I did manage to scan most of data from the original disk, now called "ex-FAT" but on which I could not open anything, so it was apparently not totally erased?? even though it shows no content????

  4. #4
    problems with USB memory stick compatibility
    Rod Sprague's Avatar
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    Ah, yes, dependent on your operating system the title is slightly different. MS-DOS FAT is the same as FAT32 and it's the one you want unless your individual files will be greater than 4Gb in size in which case exFAT will be necessary.
    MS-DOS FAT is usually the best choice.
    I used to be conceited but now I'm perfect.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Sprague View Post
    Ah, yes, dependent on your operating system the title is slightly different. MS-DOS FAT is the same as FAT32 and it's the one you want unless your individual files will be greater than 4Gb in size in which case exFAT will be necessary.
    MS-DOS FAT is usually the best choice.
    Is the MS-DOS FAT limit really 4 GB?
    I had an MS-DOS FAT formatted USB flash drive recently give me problems with around 2.3GB files.
    Took me a while to figure out what was happening and reformat the drive.

  6. #6
    Thanks again. I always thought those FAT things were strictly Microsoft stuff. Ask and learn.

  7. #7
    FAT16 has a file size limit of 2GB, FAT32 has a limit of 4GB. Most recent OS' might call it FAT32 or just FAT and they are defaulting to FAT32. Apart from file size limits, you also have to contend with volume size limits. FAT16, for example, is limited to a maximum of 2GB (also the file limit). FAT32 can go up to 2TB on most modern OS'.

    exFAT removes a bunch of restrictions and supports larger drives than we will see (likely) in our lifetime. Max volume of 128 Petabytes and max file size of 12 Exabytes.

    As long as everyone that is sharing a drive is using recent enough OS', FAT32 or exFAT are good options.
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by oaxcarmen View Post
    Thanks again. I always thought those FAT things were strictly Microsoft stuff. Ask and learn.
    FAT (File Allocation Table) was a technology developed by a number of companies like Microsoft, Novell, DEC, IBM, Compaq, of which only MS made consumer level OS' where you are familiar with that technology.
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  9. #9
    problems with USB memory stick compatibility
    IWT's Avatar
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    I have to say, right or wrong, I've always Formatted a USB Stick that was required for Mac and Windows, as exFAT.

    No limitations as far as I was aware. You can put anything on it and it will play nicely on both systems.

    Ian
    Ian

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by IWT View Post
    I have to say, right or wrong, I've always Formatted a USB Stick that was required for Mac and Windows, as exFAT.

    No limitations as far as I was aware. You can put anything on it and it will play nicely on both systems.

    Ian
    Ian, this totally works if you are using a drive to go between Mac and Windows. But throw a random device like a SmartTV or your car or music player, then suddenly the exFAT drive might not work, so FAT32 is still going to be your common denominator for a while to come.
    Last edited by Raz0rEdge; 04-03-2019 at 10:13 AM.
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  11. #11
    problems with USB memory stick compatibility
    IWT's Avatar
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    Thanks for that, Ashwin. Something new learnt today.

    As it so happens, all my dealings are with PowerPoint or similar created on my iMac and transferred to a Windows PC.

    Many thanks.

    Ian
    Ian

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by IWT View Post
    Thanks for that, Ashwin. Something new learnt today.

    As it so happens, all my dealings are with PowerPoint or similar created on my iMac and transferred to a Windows PC.

    Many thanks.

    Ian
    I'm with ya. I default to exFAT for most things. But recently my old flash drive failed and I wanted to scan some documents on my multifunction scanner and every flash drive I threw at it failed. Turns out the printer is old enough to only support USB1.1 and the new USB flash drive I bought only supported USB2.0 and USB3.0/3.1. I then found a different old drive and formatted to exFAT and it still didn't work. I ended up having to format to FAT32 to get it to work.

    Similar story with my 2018 Porsche 718 Cayman that supposedly supports USB2.0 and exFAT. The new USB drive (while recognized by all Macs in the house), will not work in that car. I had to use that old USB drive and FAT32 to get my music into the car.

    Turns out that not all USB manufacturers are being careful with backward compatibility on USB standards and systems that say they support exFAT for some reason don't.
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


  13. #13
    problems with USB memory stick compatibility
    IWT's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2009
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    Your Mac's Specs
    Late 2015 5K 27-inch Retina iMac, 4GHz i7, 32GB RAM, 1TB Flash Drive, macOS High Sierra 10.13.6
    2018 Porsche 718 Cayman
    Wonderful car. Enjoy it my friend.

    Ian
    Ian

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by IWT View Post
    Wonderful car. Enjoy it my friend.

    Ian
    Thanks, it's been an absolute dream to own a Porsche and this is a blast!
    --
    Regards
    ...Ashwin


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