An anonymous reader asks: "I have recently (as in today ) acquired a 250GB external HD with both USB2 and Firewire ports, with an eye to using it to carry around all my stuff (my humungous e-mail archive, ISO images of whetever distro I'm running, music and work files - I do a lot of database work, so I often need to move 40GB+ database dumps). The thing is, In order to make proper use of it I have to be able to mount and write to it on all three platforms I use: Windows (easy, it comes formatted as FAT32), Linux (trivial mount syntax) and Mac OS X (it just works as is, since it also supports FAT32). However, I'd like to get rid of FAT32." What filesystems, aside from the FAT varieties, have decent support across the major operating systems?
"The disk comes factory-formatted (Windows doesn't allow you to format a disk this big as a single FAT32 partition), and even though I'm not running against any FAT32 limitations yet, I was wondering if there was a better filesystem to use. NTFS would be perfect (given its rock-solid transaction support - always useful on an external drive), but the Linux versions are far from reliable for large file writes and Mac OS X lacks it. ext3 isn't supported on Windows or the Mac (as far as I know).
In short, my requirements are:
However, if I'm to be stuck with FAT32, I'd appreciate pointers to utilities for reformatting the HD with a single 250GB partition for Mac OS X and Windows (the built-in Disk Manager only lets me format 40GB partitions in FAT32, to force people to move to NTFS)."
- The filesystem must be read/write for Windows, Linux and Mac
- The disk must have a single partition
- There must be tools available for all three OSs to format the HD with that filesystem in case something goes wrong and I'm away from home base