How to change sector size from 4096 to 512

Change on a 3TB Western Digital 'My Essential' External Hard Drive
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More about change sector size 4096
  1. Why, if I may,... Change to NTSF first...
  2. You can't change the sector size of a hard drive - the sectors are created when the hard drive is manufactured and can't be changed.

    You can change the NTFS cluster size (also called the "allocation unit size") of the file system using Disk Manager as shown by nikorr, but you have to reformat to do it. Using a smaller cluster size may result in a more fragmented disk and slower performance.
  3. ^ +1, i wouldnt even bother especially for an external drive. Is there any reason you want to do this?
  4. That's what I thought.
  5. trying to reformat the 3tb hard drive to fat32. i have acronis disk director, but the program isn't recognizing the drive because the sector size is 4096. acronis recognizes 512. the reason i'm reformatting the drive iss so that my ps3 supports the drive for movies and what not.
  6. now if anyone knows a progrzm where i can reformat a 3tb drive with a sector size of 4096 to fat32, that would be most appreciated
  7. Check this link to Western Digital to make sure it is the right drive and what you want to do:
    http://support.wdc.com/product/download.asp?groupid=408&sid=34&lang=en
  8. You can't change a 4096 byte sector to a 512 one. Further more if you are using Windows XP you must byte align the drive using the free utility that Western Digital provides. You can't format a 3T byte drive to FAT32 because the FAT gets to large to be held in memory, but you can format it to EXTFAT32, but whats wrong with NTFS?
  9. meradz said:
    Check this link to Western Digital to make sure it is the right drive and what you want to do:
    http://support.wdc.com/product/download.asp?groupid=408&sid=34&lang=en


    I HAVE WINDOWS 7. ONLY XP AND 2000 WORK FOR THAT DOWNLOAD. THANKS ANYWAY
  10. GKobus said:
    trying to reformat the 3tb hard drive to fat32.
    FAT32 has a maximum volume size limit of 2TB. If you want to use a large drive with your PlayStation you'll be limited to 2TB max.
  11. if you change the sector size to 512, it is not able to use the full capacity of the drive, 3TB due to the limitation of 32 bit. 2 TB is max for 32 bit
  12. GKobus said:
    now if anyone knows a progrzm where i can reformat a 3tb drive with a sector size of 4096 to fat32, that would be most appreciated


    As other have said, you can't change the sector size. Also, as sminlal said, fat32 only supports up to 2TB.

    That said, the PS3 only requires a drive to be fat32. I used this program to format my drive since windows won't create a fat32 drive this large. While you are at it, you might want to check Sony's web site to see how large a drive the PS3 will support.

    http://tokiwa.qee.jp/EN/Fat32Formatter/
  13. The other option, is to stream from your Windows PC to your PS3. You can use Windows Media Player as a UPNP server. That way you can use all 3TB instead of being limited. I set it up once, but then built a HTPC.

    Here is a link to a guide - http://community.us.playstation.com/thread/2302109?start=0&tstart=0
  14. For those that think 2TB is the limit, you are forgetting (or unaware of) LBA. Logical Block Addressing (LBA) adds 48-bit support.
  15. meradz said:
    For those that think 2TB is the limit, you are forgetting (or unaware of) LBA. Logical Block Addressing (LBA) adds 48-bit support.


    In order to overcome the size limit of FAT16, while at the same time allowing DOS (disk operating system) real mode code to handle the format, and without reducing available conventional memory unnecessarily, Microsoft expanded the cluster size yet again, calling the new revision FAT32. Cluster values are represented by 32-bit numbers, of which 28 bits are used to hold the cluster number. The boot sector uses a 32-bit field for the sector count, limiting the FAT32 volume size to 2 TB for sector size 512; compare the size limits given below.[

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File_Allocation_Table
  16. Hawkeye22 said:


    Which mentions nothing about LBA.
  17. meradz said:
    For those that think 2TB is the limit, you are forgetting (or unaware of) LBA. Logical Block Addressing (LBA) adds 48-bit support.
    48-bit LBA addressing is used by the INT13 BIOS calls during the booting process to access volumes larger than 137GB. It really doesn't have anything to do with file systems at all, it's simply a way for the bootstrap loader to deal with larger drives whether those drives contain a FAT, NTFS, or one of the various flavours of Linux file systems.

    The limitations of a file system are determined by the size of its metadata structures. Those data structures really don't have anything to do with LBA addressing. In FAT terms, the maximum size is determined by the cluster size times the number of clusters that a volume can have, and the number of clusters is determined by the number of bits the file system uses to store a cluster number. As described in Hawkeye's post, it works out to 2TB.

    It is possible to have a larger FAT volume if you use larger cluster sizes - for example if you increase the cluster size from 8KBytes to 32KBytes then a FAT volume can hold up to 8TB of data. But cluster sizes that large are nonstandard - they don't work with Windows and there's a good chance that consumer devices such as the PlayStation won't understand them either.
  18. iam2thecrowe said:
    ^ +1, i wouldnt even bother especially for an external drive. Is there any reason you want to do this?

    ^^^^^Because you can waste a lot of space due to slack space between the end of a file and the end of the cluster. If you have a whole bunch of 7 byte files and your cluster size is 1024 bytes you're going to waste tons of hard drive space. I'm surprised you didn't use any smiley face emocons (or whatever they're called) in your response.
  19. nikorr said:
    That's what I thought.


    not a solution but a reason doing a copy of small file would take hours with aomie a copy of a disk partition only takes minutes becacue it is coping sectors. tHIS CAN only be done if the disks have the same sector size . Huge huge loss if you buy a disk with 4096 sectors.
  20. Just posting here a followup on the issue because it's quite popular on search engines.

    It seems it IS possible to reduce from 4096 to 512, at least one person did and reported that it worked well:

    http://superuser.com/questions/463952/is-it-possible-to-set-the-logical-sector-size-of-a-usb-hdd

    Basically, you have to use a partitionning tool like gdisk or fdisk to delete then recreate the partition just after so that only the beginning and end of the disk are rewritten over. Here's the original answer:

    Quote:


    I just had a similar issue. I had a Seagate 3TB USB Desktop Expansion drive that I wanted to move into my PC for faster access (I only had USB 2.0 on the PC). Once I did that I couldn't access the filesystem. Returning it to the USB to SATA controller made it work again. Comparing the two I found that in the external case (using the USB to SATA controller) the drive had 4096/4096 logical/physical sector sizes and when connected to the internal motherboard SATA, it had 512/4096 logical/physical sector sizes. Much like the OP sugguests, a 4096 logical sector size allows for > 2TiB partitions, but at the 512 sector size we get the 2TiB limit. I didn't want to copy stuff off (slowly over USB) to somewhere, repartition (GPT), reformat, and copy back, so I kept at it. My ultimate solution was to:

    Use gdisk (GPT version of fdisk) to make delete and remake the partition spanning the exact same area (using 512 byte sectors0 as the original MBR partition table (which has 4k sectors). This basically amounted to taking the sectors for start/end of the partition in 4K-land and multiplying by 8. I did have an off-by one on the end, so I added 8 more there and so far so good (e2fsck alerted me to that.) The e2fsk is still going, so I'm not 100% sure I'm safe, but it seems all good in theory and I did mount the files for a bit and they looked fine. Note: I imagine it's obvious I'm running Linux...
  21. iam2thecrowe said:
    ^ +1, i wouldnt even bother especially for an external drive. Is there any reason you want to do this?


    This is an old thread but the issue is still relevant. The reason I would be looking to reformat a drive to 512 is because Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server Backup do not behave properly with 4k formatted disks. It's probably a niche problem, but it doesn't feel small when faced with it, as I am!

    Here's one thread pertaining to the problem which also by the way includes a partial solution:
    https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/889b01be-d333-4fc7-b005-e12b7b236ad7/problem-with-windows-server-backup-2008-r2-with-advanced-format-4k-drive?forum=windowsbackup
  22. Unfortunately WD's documentation is dumbed down for idiots, so it's difficult to understand what WD's Quick Formatter actually does.

    http://wdc.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/3868/~/using-wd-quick-formatter-to-format-external-drives-(windows-8,-7,-vista,-xp)-or

    However, ISTR (from user feedback) that selecting "XP Compatible" mode causes the bridge firmware in the external enclosure to be reconfigured with a 4096-byte sector size. Choosing "Factory Default" results in a 512-byte sector size. Note that this procedure is data destructive.
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