What to format your external hd partitions

When you format your hd for external use - do you go with fat32 or ext#?

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For what use-case?

Mostly transferring files - pictures from my kubuntu pc to my wifes W10 and sons W7 computers. There is some old mail - like 10GB - that I keep saved because its old work stuff … documents, etc.

Sorry… I said fat32 but Im thinking it has to be exfat with the size. The hd is 1tb.

I usually use NTFS for external devices.

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If it is going to be used by a Windows machine then ntfs is the only way, Do not
believe Windows will read or write to any Linux ext partition.
After doing some research I do believe exFat would also be a good format, for
both Linux and Windows.

fat32 is correct. I have read many times that fat32 was the best file type to be use for a disk (partition) to be used between OS’s. Not to say NTFS won’t work. I sometimes have problems mounting a NTFS disk as r/w to Linux. It keeps mounting as r/o. Of course, that just might be my inexperience with Linux.

I created a 500gb fat32 section, moved photos over to move to my wifes laptop and when I plugged it in … W10 had trouble opening. I created another 100gb that was ntfs just to test … no problem. Opened right up. The other did open but it took much much longer … and I dont know what the problem would be but… its working on ntfs so I did the whole 2tb that way.

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Windows NTFS is the best one to go for, as if you have files going over 4GB Fat32 won’t transfer the file over. About the only decent thing about NTFS, is I have my Steam Games installed on 2TB SSD drive which is SATA but in my icy dock. Even though Proton has come along way there is still a lot of faffing about, so I have Windows 10 for AAA games and all stored on 2TB SSD formatted to NTFS. One for Linux gaming and one for Windows, meaning that with this icy dock able to remove the drive I want to use. Make sure your USB drive is USB 3 as transfer speeds are faster. Give the drive a label name too in G-Parted. i:e Media, Images. That way you’ll know what drive is what. The only drawback with NTFS is if you have video files your smart TV can’t read it. Every smart TV with USB connection relies on Fat32 unfortunately.

I dont use this drive for my tv - mostly just my and my work data.
My son wants me to look to Steam for games … (just a side thought :smiley: )

I used to use exFat for USB flash drives. It doesn’t have a filesize limit of 4GB.
NTFS for HDD, but only if I need to give it someone using Win.
I have a dozen of exetrenal drives, which I use exclusively for my own purposes. I have ext4 on them.