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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger Diogones's Avatar
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    Windows XP will not transfer zip file to thumb drive

    I have a computer with Windows XP Pro SP3 installed on it, and I'm trying to transfer a rather large ~5GB folder to my thumb drive, with is 16GB in size, and is formatted as FAT 32. The trouble is, while XP does copy the folder without issue, when I zip the folder (which saves about 500MB) and then attempt a transfer, it gives me the "insufficient disk size" error, although I do have plenty of space on the thumb drive.

    Is this error due to the FAT32 4GB file size limit? Is a zip folder treated as an individual file, and thus unable to transfer, being too big, while the unzipped folder is transferred via individual file? If so, then I can always transfer the folder, and then zip it on the thumb drive, right? Or would that still be considered too big?
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    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    See if this article might be of assistance. It appears the largest file size that can be transfered to a FAT32 formated drive is 4 GB, no matter the size of the target drive.
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  3. #3
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    The zip file is treated as one file and 4 gigs is the limit on FAT32; so format to NTFS (or exFAT if you have compatibility all around) and you're good to go. Note you need to go into the hardware properties of the flash drive and change it to Optimize for performance before you will get the option of NTFS (if its not already there). Once formatted you can then change it back to Quick removal if desired.

  4. #4
    Bronze Lounger DrWho's Avatar
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    Di-----

    If that's a folder, I'm assuming that it contains several files, EH?

    Split it up into two folders and then zip each one using 7Zip with the highest compression.
    That should take care of the problem without having to reformat your Flash Drive.

    The benefit of having a flash drive formatted FAT-32 is that it can be read on any computer, running any MS OS,
    even in DOS.

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  5. #5
    2 Star Lounger Diogones's Avatar
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    Thanks all for your helpful replies! Thank you for the link Ted, it was a good read. So my suspicions are confirmed; I will need to either transfer the folder unzipped, or follow the good Dr. Who's advice, and just split it into several smaller zip files. That's not a bad idea to reformat the thumb drive as exFAT, Infinicore, but will that work on XP? I thought formatting a thumb drive as NTFS wasn't always worth it, because not all OSes can read or write to NT, and the thumb drive can't take advantage of NT's sophistication, such as encryption and compression (the NT type, not zip).
    "Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent." - Issac Asimov, from his novel "Foundation"

  6. #6
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    There's an XP update for exFAT compatibility. I don't personally use it even though I'm just XP and W7...and media players; my media players don't understand exFAT, but as soon as I got rid of the one media player that only understood FAT32, I went all in on NTFS because I have many files over 4 gigs in size and just never want to run into that roadblock now or in the future.

    Found this article that indicates you can compress and encrypt flash drives with NTFS. Slower copy times seems to be the "tax" for NTFS in exchange for greater file size capacity, robust file system, encryption and compression.

  7. #7
    2 Star Lounger Diogones's Avatar
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    Hmm, I wonder how much the slower copy times would be compared to a FAT formatted flash drive? Probably not that much, I'd imagine. Anyway, good point Infinicore: exFAT isn't as widespread as FAT32 or even NTFS, so compatibility might be an issue, depending on what you are doing.
    "Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent." - Issac Asimov, from his novel "Foundation"

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