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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives System
I followed the information provided by Anonymous in Create HFS+ and FAT32 partitions on one external drive and those step-by-step instructions were very clear, and I didn't have any headaches creating my partitions.

However, system administrator privileges became an issue (because I'm using university equipment) and the Mac system does not allow variable users to alter external hard drives. So I could not view the Mac side of my partition without getting a system administrator every, stinking time I wanted to save files ... needless to say, I had to find another way.

My alternative was using FAT_32, or in my case FAT_16 (my hard drive doesn't have enough space to allow FAT_32, but /f32 would work as well), OS X can read FAT formats and so I copy files effortlessly between platforms -- using this DOS method allows one big external hard drive, usable by every operating system that I can think of! Thoughts? Am I overly excited? Am I missing something about the benefits of DOS ... this "antiquated� file allocation (as opposed to NTFS, which the Mac won't read)?

This also means I won't have to wake System Administrators in the middle of the night, so that they can allow me access to my own external hard drive on the shared system to save files from some movie/audio project I'm editing.

[robg adds: I haven't tested this one (and really can't do so easily), so I'm not sure if there's something missing or not, but it seems it might help those who move drives between machines regularly. Anyone able to provide more info?]
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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives | 6 comments | Create New Account
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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives
Authored by: Bemopolis on Oct 22, '03 12:29:53PM

I had this same problem with my FW drive between my laptop
and the work desktop. The problem is that the UID on your
accounts on each machine is different; i.e., on my laptop my
UID is 501, but it was 507 on the desktop. The solution is,
of course, to set the UIDs of all of your accounts the same.

The process is straightforward (one line if you're clever) but
involved, as the system has to change the UID on all of your
files and directories. As such, the process can be ridiculously
dangerous -- and requires admin privileges, naturally. Your
sysadmin should know how to do this (and given the prospect
of more midnight calls, it is in his/her interest to figure it out
quickly if not).

Bemopolis



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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives
Authored by: rhowell on Oct 22, '03 12:33:46PM

Fat16 and Fat32 don't support file permissions, so you'll lose that security. That is, in a multiuser environment (such as a university) any user will be able to read/write any other users files.

Of course, this breach in security is always possible with HFS+ by simply reading/writing these files from an OS 9 app.

A fully secure machine will have only HFS+ and no OS 9.



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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives
Authored by: TvE on Oct 22, '03 03:34:02PM

Panther is capable of reading NTFS formatted volumes :-)



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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives
Authored by: iu-macboy on Oct 22, '03 05:19:54PM

The company I work for recently had the need for this cross-platform portability. Mostly for folks who travel to different locations/offices. Requirements were that data could be stored easily (no administrator needed) and accesses directly at the remote location where the destiniation machine was unknown and support was not always available. Our solution was to purchase several USB Flash drives, of the small variety that can hang on a keychain. Out of the box they are formatted FAT16, and plug into the USB port. They even come with a extension cable to plug in to those "hard to reach places." Sizes can range from 64MB up to over 1GB (some are even 2GB but I think they may be FAT32).

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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives
Authored by: mollw on Oct 22, '03 06:28:27PM

if you do use fat32 bear in mind OSX will only recognize partitions up to 127gb in size.

m



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Use FAT32 or FAT16 on cross-platform external hard drives
Authored by: nmthor1 on Oct 23, '03 03:05:22AM

Also, files can only be a maximum of about 2 GB in size on a FAT32 drive; HFS+ and NTFS have no such limitations.

n



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