Troubleshooting Tips For Copying Files Over 4GB To Fat32


If you’ve seen how to copy files over 4GB in fat32, this guide should help you.

  1. Method 1. Reformat in explorer.
  2. Method 2. Reformat in Disk Management.
  3. Method 3. Change the file system on the command line.
  4. Method 4. Convert the file system to EaseUS Partition Master.



Transferring a file of 4 GB or more to a USB stick or memory stick

Why can’t I transfer a file of 4 GB or more to a USB stick or memory stick?

This is due to the FAT32 limitation. Files larger than 4 GB CANNOT be saved on a FAT32 volume. Formatting the flash drive to exFAT or NTFS will fix this problem.

WARNING: back up your data. Formatting will erase all data on your device.

SOLUTION 1 – Formatting in exFAT
ExFAT file system that can store one file over 4 GB on the device. This file system is also compatible with Mac.

how to copy files larger than 4gb to fat32

Windows 7 and Mac OS 10.6.6 and later are exFAT compatible by default. Older operating systems may require a patch to ensure exFAT compatibility .

NOTE. The exFAT file system is NOT compatible with some host devices such as TVs, game systems, old operating systems, car stereos, etc.

Formatting a disk to exFAT
1. Double click “My Computer”.
2. MoreRight-click your USB flash drive or memory card and select “Format”.
3. In the file system list, click exFAT.
4. Click Start.
5. Click OK to start formatting.

Click to open formatting instructions for Mac

SOLUTION 2. Format as NTFS

– If you format the device as NTFS, it can no longer be written to the Mac computer. Most Macs can read NTFS, but not write.
– NTFS is a journal file system that increases read / write activity. Hence, it can shorten the lifespan of your device.
– After the device is formatted as NTFS, you MUST use the Safely Remove Hardware feature to remove the device.

STEP 1. Optimize your USB drive for better performance
1. We connect the device to the PC.
2. Open Computer Management Console
A) Windows 8
B) Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7
3. Select Device Manager
4 on the left. Expand Disk Drives on the right
5. Click a flash drive Right-click and select Properties.
6. Click the Strategy tab.
7. Select “Optimize performance” and click “OK”.

STEP 2. Format your USB flash drive
1. Double click “My Computer”.
2. Right-click the flash drive and select “Format”.
3. In the file system list, click NTFS.
4. Click Start.
5. Click OK to start formatting.

What If I Want To Use ExFAT Instead Of NTFS?

The steps for switching to exFAT are the same as for NTFS. You just need to select exFAT from the dropdown list instead of NTFS.

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P.S. Our USBCrypt encryption software can create a virtual encrypted hard disk in NTFS or exFAT format even if the main disk is formatted with FAT32. This suggests another solution: inwhere to format the host hard drive with NTFS, you can use USBCrypt to create a virtual encrypted hard drive in NTFS format instead. With this, you not only get a 4GB file size limit, but you also get robust and password protection for files that you place on the virtual encrypted hard drive. You can find more information or a free 30-day trial on the USBCrypt website.

P.P.S. If you just need to transfer a large file from one computer to another, the FAT format can be achieved with a file splitting utility like the one included in our AB Commander file manager. The Split command allows you to split a large file into smaller parts (for example, 2 GB each). These songs can be easily transferred to the player in FAT format. Then use the Combine command on the destination computer to combine the blocks into the source file. Of course, if you want to open a file directly from an external FAT drive, it won’t help, but only transferring the file between Windows computers shouldwork fine.

P.P.P.S. Follow these steps if Windows does not support NTFS format.

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This article is also available in other languages:

  • Why can’t I copy large settings over 4GB to a USB stick?
  • ¿Por qué no puedo copiar archivos considering a 4GB USB flash drive?
  • Why can’t I copy large files over 4GB to my USB stick?

Fix “File Too Large For Target File System”

My Kingston USB drive has more than 14GB of free space, but I cannot copy the 8GB ISO file to the USB drive. My Windows 10 says “the file is too large for the target file system.” Why is an 8GB file too large for 14GB of storage?



Why is there a 4gb limit on fat32?

Since FAT32 stores 32-bit file sizes and you can store a maximum of 32-bit files, 2 ^ 32-1 ~ = 4.29e9. 2 ^ 32 – 1 bytes = 4 GB – 1 byte. (This is indeed explained in the Wikipedia article.)

How can I copy large files to fat32 without converting to NTFS?

Solution 2: Copy large files to FAT32 without converting them to NTFS
  1. Download and install 7-Zip on your computer.
  2. Right click on the large file, then select 7-Zip> Add to Archive.
  3. In the Add to Archive window, change the archive format to zip and divide it into volumes.
  4. Click OK and wait for the process to complete.