Software To Read Fat32 On Mac

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Writing the files from the Mac did cause some extra files to be written other then the.DSStore (some kind of shortcut to the files I was writing), but the files were readable from Windows. I did some further testing. My Mac can read a FAT32 Partionion (did not test FAT16). It will not read an NTFS partition. Jun 16, 2019  Format to FAT32 If you have an NTFS drive you can use macOS’ Disk Utility to reformat it to FAT32. This is simple to do and means the data on your drive/USB stick can be read.

For Apple Mac users, there are two ways to format USB flash drive to FAT32, including Disk Utility and Terminal command line. Refer to detailed steps of using both tools for FAT32 format. Formatting would erase data completely, make sure that you have a data backup. Otherwise, you can only use data recovery software to recover data from a formatted USB drive.

Are you looking for a secure way to format USB flash drive to FAT32 on Mac? You are at the right place. Follow here, you will find two methods that will assist you in doing so on your storage device and if you lost data due formatting, reliable Mac file recovery software is ready to help anytime:

Workable SolutionsStep-by-step Troubleshooting
Method 1. Use Disk UtilityConnect USB to Mac > Go to Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility > Select USB and click 'Erase'..Full steps
Method 2. Use Terminal CommandConnect USB to Mac > Hit cmd + space keys > Type terminal and hit Enter..Full steps
Bonus Tip. Recover Formatted DataIf you lost data due to formatting, run EaseUS file recovery software > Scan and recover formatted data..Full steps

How to Format a USB Flash Drive with Mac to FAT32

Many computer users who use a removable flash drive have the demand for formatting it to the FAT32 file system. Compare with the other commonly used NTFS file system on a flash drive, FAT32 has a compatibility advantage across many operating systems.

It's a universal format that is compatible with Mac OS X/macOS, Windows, Linux and DOS systems. So, if users anticipate using the flash drive with more than one operating system, they will definitely benefit from the FAT32 file system. For Apple Mac users, there are two ways to format a USB flash drive to FAT32, including Disk Utility and Terminal command line. Refer to detailed steps of using both tools for FAT32 format.

Method 1. Format FAT32 on Mac [Disk Utility]

To format USB to FAT32 with Disk Utility will erase all data on the flash drive, so before you doing so, please do remember to check whether you have saved useful data to another secure device in advance.

Fat32 format download

To format the USB drive to FAT32, follow the next steps:

Step 1. Connect the USB flash drive to your Mac computer.

Step 2.Go to Applications > Utilities > Double click and open Disk Utility.

Step 3. Select your USB flash drive on the sidebar, choose Erase.

Step 4. Rename the USB flash drive, choose the format as MS-DOS (FAT) for Format, Master Boot Record for Scheme. Then click Erase.

Wait for the process to complete, then you’ll get an empty new USB flash drive with FAT32 as the file system. You can reuse it for saving data again.

Method 2. Format FAT32 on Mac [Terminal Command Line]

The command line behavior does the same way to erase data with the Disk Utility. Again, create a backup before taking this action.

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To format FAT32 with Terminal, follow the next steps:

Step 1. Connect your USB flash drive to your Mac computer.

Step 2. Hit cmd + space to run Spotlight, type: terminal and hit Enter.

3. Type:diskutil list and find out which disk is your USB drive. (In the below picture, you can see that /dev/disk2 is the USB drive)

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4. Type: sudo diskutil eraseDisk FAT32 MBRFormat /dev/disk2.

  • sudo gives you user right.
  • Diskutil calls disk utility program.
  • eraseDisk commands to format.
  • FAT32 sets the file system.
  • MBRFormat tells disk utility to format with a Master Boot Record.
  • /dev/disk2 is the location of the USB drive.

Wait for the process to complete. After this, you can type: diskutil list in command again to check if the formatting has been successful.

Complementary Data Recovery Tip

Formatting would erase data completely, make sure that you have a data backup. Otherwise, you can only use data recovery software to recover data from a formatted USB drive.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard has both Windows and Mac versions, so it's the optimal choice for data recovery, no matter you're using a PC or Mac. If you're a Mac user, for example, it takes only a few clicks for the software to scan and display your formatted data. To guarantee an effective data recovery without spending money to no avail, you can install the Mac data recovery free version for the first trial. You can preview all the found data before the final recovery.

To recover data from a formatted FAT32 USB flash drive on Mac, follow the next steps:

Step 1. Correctly connect your USB flash drive to your Mac. Launch EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard for Mac. Start selecting the flash drive and click Scan to let the software search lost files on it.

Step 2. After quick scan and deep scan, all files will be presented in the left pane in the scan results.

Step 3. Select files you want to recover and click Recover Now button. Don't save the recoverable files to the USB drive itself in case of data overwriting.

There are plenty of annoying things that can happen while using your Macbook, one of which is plugging in a USB hard drive and finding out that you cannot write to it, or copy to and from the external drive.

There isn’t a single solution to all these woes, but here’s a quick guide to addressing these bugbears that involve external hard drive performance and connection to Mac.

File systems: An overview

A file system is a handy tool that allows an OS to read data on any USB drive or hard drive. There are quite a few file systems out there, and the reality is that not every operating system works fine with each one of those systems.

Apple computers use HFS+ file system by default. Windows, on the other hand, uses New Technology File System (NTFS).

Mac users are likely to find FAT32 and exFAT as their best options, and for a good reason. If you’ve ever tried to format a hard drive as NTFS, you have probably come across a handful of trouble in getting it to work with your Mac or Linux. macOS is able to recognize as well as read NTFS drives, but it cannot write to them. NTFS works flawlessly with Windows, but leaves much to be desired with everything else.

Meanwhile, FAT32 and exFAT work with all operating systems just fine. File Allocation Table (FAT) is the oldest of the file systems, hence it can be recognized by every OS out there. Personal computers have seen its evolution from FAT12 to FAT16 to the current FAT32, and then the arrival of exFAT, created with USB drives and external drives in mind.

Your operating system’s primary hard drive should be the best match for that OS, while USB drives and external hard drives should use either FAT32 or exFAT.

FAT32 vs. exFAT

Here are some points of comparison to help you decide on which one to go with:

  • Devices supported – FAT32 is the most widely compatible file system, working on any OS as well as media players, devices, and video game consoles. exFAT, in contrast, will work fine on 99 percent of devices, but may encounter an issue on certain media players. Xbox One, for instance, usually runs into issues with exFAT USB drives formatted on a Mac.
  • Sizes supported – FAT32 can support files with up to 4 GB in size and can be used as the file system on hard drives that are 8 TB at a maximum. exFAT, however, has no limitations on file sizes as well as hard drive sizes, making it the better option for those who are using a portable drive that stores massive files, such as 3D projects.
  • Speed – Generally, exFAT drives are quicker at writing and reading data compared to FAT32 drives. As a rule of thumb, format your drive as exFAT if you are fairly sure that you won’t have a file smaller than 4 GB.

You can easily format a USB drive or external hard drive as exFAT instead of FAT32. macOS users can follow these steps:

  1. Open Spotlight (Command + Space). Run Disk Utility.
  2. Select the USB drive in the menu found on the left.
  3. Click Erase, and then choose exFAT in Format.

External hard drive ‘read only’ issue? Here’s a quick fix

Once you plug in your drive and open Disk Utility, highlight your drive in the sidebar and click Erase, as shown in the instructions above. Your next step, however, can vary depending on what you want to do with the blank drive:

  • Portable drive – Are you keen on making a portable drive to use with your Mac and Mac computers alone? Format your drive to HFS with the Mac OS Extended option.
  • Time Machine backup – Are you using the drive to back up your Mac with Time Machine? Then format the drive to HFS+, which shows up as Mac OS Extended in the Disk Utility GIU.
  • For older devices – In the off chance that you’re using the disk with another device that doesn’t support for exFAT, then select the older FAT option. Usually you should veer away from this option because it limits drive sizes to less than 32 GB.

Now, let’s get to a one-time fix of enabling macOS built in experimental NTFS support. Take note: this method can have serious consequences and result in loss of data on target drive, so skip this fix if you’re writing to important volumes or eyeing a long-term solution.

This fix is based on the fact that sometimes we need to write some files to a drive once, in which case nothing needs to be installed. Mac has built-in support for reading NTFS by default, with the write capability hiding behind a Terminal hack.

Follow these steps:

  1. Open Terminal. In your editor of choice, open /etc/fstab. If you have no preference, use Nano and type:

nano etc/fstab

Read Fat32 On Mac

  1. Copy this line into the file:

LABEL=DRIVENAME none ntfs rw,auto,nobrowse

  1. Replace DRIVENAME with the name of the drive you’d like to access. Save the file by hitting control+o, and then control+x to quit Nano.
  2. Disconnect and reconnect your drive in order to remount it. Now it’s available in /Volumes. Get here via Finder: in the menu bar, click Go and choose Go to Folder. Enter /Volumes and then click Go.

fstab is a hidden file setting preferences for disks, and can be useful for preventing disk partitions from mounting. In this particular case, it allows you to read-write on a disk that is not writable on default.

If you’re hardly comfortable with Terminal, you can choose a paid option for a pain-free way of working with files. A paid option likely entails less work and, as we mentioned earlier, experimental support isn’t reliable in the long term.


Software To Read Fat32 On Mac Software

To summarize, a Mac can read from an NTFS disk, but it cannot write to it without a little work and help from third-party software. You need to format the drive for use on a Mac.

exFat outperforms Fat32 in most aspects. NTFS is better in nearly all aspects compared to exFAT, but only if you are using a USB drive on Windows computers. If you’re a Mac user, NTFS isn’t good news for you.

Once you’ve solved “read only” external hard drive problems on your Mac, get into the habit of cleaning and optimizing your Mac for top performance using a reliable tool such as Tweakbit MacRepair.

Mac users, tell us about your own experience!

Can Mac Read Fat32 Usb


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