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How Format External Hard Drive

By CMar ยท 8 replies
Dec 9, 2005
  1. Hi

    I have a 250GB External Hard Drive that is currently formatted NTFS, and I need to format it FAT_32. I have copied all the data from the external drive to my PC so I have a copy, but when I go to format the external drive it only gives me the NTFS option!??

    Any advice welcome - have searched the previous threads and most refer to formatting from FAT_32 to NTFS, and can't find one that talks about the problem I am having, but I may have missed it and it may be something really simple :)
  2. bsaber

    bsaber TS Rookie Posts: 49

    How are you going about formatting it?
  3. poertner_1274

    poertner_1274 secroF laicepS topShceT Posts: 4,172

    It is a little involved. Have a look here for infoThere is a lot of stuff but the info is there.

    :wave:Welcome to TechSpot:wave:
  4. CMar

    CMar TS Rookie Topic Starter

    How Formatting


    I was just right clicking on the external drive and selecting format.

  5. CMar

    CMar TS Rookie Topic Starter



    Thanks for the welcome and the link - those guys sure where getting heated!!! Will take another look when I have fired myself up with some coffee - couldn't see an obvious solution.

    My "problem" is that I now need to be able to to swap the external hard drive between PC and Mac, so needs to be FAT_32. I think the Mac will let me re-format easilly enough, but wanted to get it done before I connected to the Mac if I could

  6. siraj

    siraj TS Rookie

    use partition Magic 8.0

    you should use partition Magic 8.0, in order to format Hard Drive, Internal or external, with different Files systems.

  7. CMar

    CMar TS Rookie Topic Starter

    not sure i can justify paying $50 for something i will probably only use once, when i have been told the Mac will format it FAT_32 no problem :-(
  8. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    You will not use PM once!

    Partition Magic over the years has been one of my most valuable purchases. Check out all the OTHER things it can do, like give you partition image backups, resizing partitions, moving entire HDD to new (bigger HDD). Most experts swear by it.
  9. patio

    patio TS Guru Posts: 482

    If you want to use FAT32 just take that drive out of it's enclosure, connect it as a slave drive then DLoad and use a WinME bootdisk from bootdisk.com
    FDisk and format it and return it to it's enclosure.
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