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Home / How-to Guides / Why i cannot send files greater than 4 GB to Fat Partition Pen/Flash drive or Hard Drive

Why i cannot send files greater than 4 GB to Fat Partition Pen/Flash drive or Hard Drive

Error while transferring files to Flash drive

Few days before, Some reader had asked, “I’m not able to transfer 4.65 GB file to 8Gb of Pen/Flash drive and getting Disk Full Error even though my Flash drive is empty. The problem seems to be very strange. You might be thinking that it can be some virus. Well, Its not any virus that causing this error, Its because of Fat partition of the drive.
In Earlier times, we had portable drive, Pen or flash drive with capacity of less than 2GB. However, Now The storage capacity has increased where you will find capacity available from Gb to Tb. At the same time, The file sizes are also getting larger in size. For example: Movies, Games, OS Software which is mostly greater than 4 GB.
You might have heard partition like NTFS and FAT32 Files System. Basically, Fat32 is an Old File System with numerous of Limitation. The error while transferring the file was due to one of the limitations of Fat File System.



What is the cause for the Error?
Mostly Pen/Flash Drive has Fat32 partition. File cannot be created to Fat Drive, if file size is greater than 4GB. (You cannot create a file larger than (2^32)-1 bytes (this is one byte less than 4 GB) on a FAT partition.) So, when we try to copy the file which is greater than 4 gb to Fat32 partition, it displayed error message.

Since, there were many limitations in Fat File System, Microsoft came up with new File System named NTFS. The new File System NTFS has many advantages and added more security features than old File System.

Is there any Solution?
Since, Fat32 is an older File System, you need to change the partition to newer File System.i.e NTFS File System. If you are using HARDDISK with FAT32 partition then convert it to NTFS. You cannot convert Pen/Flash drive To NTFS. You will find no option under the file system to format Pen/Flash drive from Fat32 to NTFS, But you can still convert it to NTFS. Check on the next post.
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About Kroshan

Roshan Karkera a.k.a. k.roshan. Blogger by passion and software engineer by profession. He believes in sharing knowledge, which made him to start his own blog. He is very much keen & passionate about new technology & Science. If you'd like to connect with him, follow at Google plus or Twitter.
  • send large files

    If you format your pen drive with FAT format I think you can copy FAT file of any size to your pen drive.

  • Brady

    My friends are calling me techie after reading your article..haaaa
    Thankyou for the wonderful article.
    i have learnt a lot from here..

  • Brad Fallon

    I am trying to dual boot Ubuntu and Mac OS X on a 3rd edition Macbook Pro and I am running into problems?

    • Just cause it’s smilpe doesn’t mean it’s not super helpful.

  • Dj roshan

    You can use Boot Camp Assistant on mac and then install ubuntu.
    its located in "/Applications/Utilities/" and follow the instruction.

  • Anonymous

    Hi THIS IS COMMON PROBLEM WITH WIN XP AND WIN VISTA when transfering or copying files esp above 2 or 4 GB . I've simple solution attach pen drive or memory card to ur usb port open Windows Explorer/My Computer ..now right click on the drive letter SELECT OPEN AS "PORTABLE MEDIA DEVICE"..THIS OPENS NEW WINDOW..DRAG AND DROP OR COPY PASTE THE HUGE FILES INTO THIS WINDOW. NO NEED TO FORMAT OR CHANGE PARTITION TYPE!! NOTE THIS IS SLOW AS NOW COPMPUTER WILL TREAT AS PORTABLE DEVICE INSTEAD OF USB Kunal Waghmare kw20@indiatimes.com

  • There are no words to dsericbe how bodacious this is.

  • You do not know how many times I have struggled with this. Thanks so much for explaining.