View Full Version : 16GB USB Flash Drive Fat32 or NTFS?

10-03-2015, 03:38 PM

Yesterday, I had bought a 16gb flash drive from Warehouse for $9.99. I thought what the heck, its a bargain considering there are similar ones on Trademe offering the same deal but it doesn't include free postage. Anyhow my question is, for a USB drive this large, should I leave it as FAT32 or NTFS?

If NTFS is a good option are there any, issues or complications I need to consider if I go down this path?

For the record, I am only using this just to back up the usual documents files, (pdf, doc, xls....etc) while my 8GB and 4GB are filling up.


10-03-2015, 04:04 PM
The only problem you will have if it stays FAT32 is the file size limitations - 4GB.

Keep in mind - USB flash drives should only be used as a backup / temp storage. Using them as a "only location" storage for your data is dangerous, they DO fail, you can lose them etc. Seen it countless times, mainly with students, the flash drive is the only place they have their work - drive fails - works gone :(

10-03-2015, 04:17 PM
There's also exFAT which is a good option. Depends what you use it for though. NTFS is widely compatible among windows based PC's but many USB based devices like media players and TV's will not read it. FAT32 is more widely compatible but has issues with large files as Wainuitech pointed out.

If you only use it for transferring files between windows PCs and use windows 7 or newer - use exFAT, if you want the best possible compatibility - use FAT32, If you want better compatibility than exFAT and larger file sizes than FAT32 allows - use NTFs. Note exFAT is not natively supported on XP but there is a MS update to fix that so you can use it on XP if you want to just be aware other XP machines may not read it unless they have been updated also.