May 06,2020 • Filed to: Mac Recovery • Proven solutions

'Is it possible to format FAT32 and NTFS drives on Mac by myself?' A user asked us about this question.

바로 guiformat입니다. 디제이인 저는 USB를 사용하기 위해서는 FAT32포맷을 이용해야 하는데요. Rocketdock - 바탕화면 정리 프로그램으로 mac처럼 만들어보자! @ jcjoseph - For FAT32, you can use the standard Windows format or Mac format - nothing special needed for 32 GB. Beyond that in Windows will need an alternative tool, as Windows will not do it. I also have EaseUS Partition Master with Premium and I like it. The UI was confusing at first. Whenever I selected a command to execute (i.e. Format), there's one more step to actually execute it and I didn't noticed the extra step at first and kept assuming it was working but I was wrong and finally figured out to click on another button to execute the command. FAT32 is supported on Mac OS and Windows, but has a limitation of 32GB. There are tools that “force” formatting above 32GB, however, since it is not conform the FAT32 industry standard, Pioneer doesn’t support it.It might work at first glance, but it will lead unexected behaviour later in your DJ set.

Certainly you can format the drives yourself by directly setting in the 'Application' on Mac. Many people think it is hard to format the windows drive on Macintosh. No worry, actually it is not impossible to realize it no matter you use an external or internal drive of your windows system. We here will show you the full guides on how to format FAT32 and NTFS drives on Mac as an example.

Part 1: Format FAT32 Drive on Mac

First, let us look on how to format FAT32 drive on Mac (macOS Sierra). You could be wondering what FAT32 is. It is a file system in Windows 95, 98, and windows Millennium Edition.

One major advantage about this file system is that nearly all the operating systems can read and write from it. On the contrary, it just accommodates files less than 4GB. So if you have a drive that you want to format ensure it is smaller size. Nevertheless, if you have a drive that is more than 4GB, you can download software known as Swissknife. After installing it, it will be much easier to format large files.

How to format FAT32 drive on Mac

Step 1. Now here is how to format your FAT32 external drive on Mac. Go finder window on you Mac then click on Applications the image right.

Step 2. From there, you need to open disk utility. Therefore, scroll down until you see a folder Utilities Double click on it.

Step 3. What you have to do is scroll down through the icons until you find an icon labelled Disk Utility again double click on it.

Step 4. When it opens at the centre, it will command you to select a disk, volume, image that you want to format.

Step 5. From there, you need to open disk utility. Therefore, scroll down until you see a folder Utilities Double click on it.

Step 6. Move the cursor to the top left and choose the disk you want to format. To achieve this you have to double click on your external drive and click the Erase icon, which is at the top of your Mac screen. After doing so, a command dialog box will be displayed that give you options of formatting your drive.

Step 7. Your problem is almost getting a solution if you still keeping track to these steps. Next, go to Format at the centre of the screen and select MS-DOS (Fat) file format system that allows compatibility with your windows drive.

Below that, you will see Name this allows you to change the name of your external drive if you wish to. From there, click Erase at the bottom of the screen. Immediately you will get a warning but go ahead and click, Erase.

When you here just relax and wait until the process is over before you remove the drive. When reformatting process is over your drive will beFAT32 and you can now use it.

Part 2: Format NTFS Drive on Mac

The second task is how to format NTFS drive on Mac. NTFS is built for windows operating system therefore it is not supported by Mac. For this case, it is advisable to install programs called NTFS 3G, which works in, handy with MacFuse. Both of these are first installed in the computer. It is easier and faster to install despite having using some cash to purchase these NTFS apps such as Tuxera or Paragon NTFS. When both are installed to the PC, they will enable the user to read and write on the drive that is after following these steps.

How to format NTFS drive on Mac

Step 1. Follow the similar procedure that is used in formatting the FAT32 above. Go to finder window in your Mac, and then click on Applications at the left hand side of your screen.

Step 2. Then double click on Utilities icon, which will appear at the screen along other applications you have installed in your computer.

Next, click on Disk Utility. As the NTFS 3G is free program most users have noted bugs despite of its success. Since you had inserted your external drive, hence it will pop up at the top right of your screen. Select that drive you want to format by first choosing the NTFS 3G format that will be displayed. You can also opt to rename your drive if you wish. Once again at the bottom of your screen to the right you will see Erase option. Click it. A warning will be displayed to you that require you simply click Erase .Be patient as the drive is formatted when it is done you are good to go. You can now read and copy paste items on your drive. Another alternative to Tuxera is Paragon NTFS. This program gives a user a room for modification and deletion of items on windows NTFS. As you have seen the NTFS formatted drives should not worry since you have a way out.

You may have encountered a case where you insert an external drive in your Mac and you cannot copy items on your Mac but you can read them. It is because your drive is using the NTFS windows system. Therefore, this leads to our third point of discussion on how to format any drive on your Mac. Disk utility is the vital application in Apple product. It makes the Mac world to be easy and interesting to use as it removes the obstacles between NTFS and HFS+. As usual, insert the drive let us say the hard disk or USB drive.

Step 3. In the finder window click Applications, go to Utilities, scroll down the screen and double click on Disk Utility. Click on the drive that you want to format. At the centre, you click on the icon Erase. A dialog box will be seen at the bottom of it with a round four commands. Select an option in which you want to format your drive. For instance, if you select an option MS DOS FAT, it will well suit with windows as well as Mac. On the other hand, if you choose MAC OS Extended (Journaled) your drive will only harmonize with Mac.

Anyway, that is not the case since everyone has his or her own preferences. Whichever option you want to choose you will still format your drive to suit your desires. From there, you click Erase and upon completion of that process, your drive will be formatted successfully.

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Why Cannot Format SD Card to FAT32 in Windows 10/8/7
Full Guide to Format SD Card to FAT32
FAT32 vs. NTFS vs. exFAT: Which Is The Best for Your SD Card

'I can't format my Sandisk Ultra 64GB MicroSD to FAT32. I used Windows right-click format and Disk Management, there is no FAT32 option under File System. Then I tried CMD format command, I received the error message saying the volume is too big for FAT32. Do you know how to format a 64GB SD card to FAT32?'

Why Cannot Format SD Card to FAT32 in Windows 10/8/7

Usually, like the USB drive, SD cards with 32GB or lower storage is set to FAT32 by default. While exFAT is set as the default file system for larger SD cards with 64GB or 128GB. As some special devices only support the FAT32 file system, like the 3Ds SD card, it requires users to format the SD card to FAT32, no matter how large it is.

Due to the limitation of FAT32, Windows system doesn't support to create a FAT32 partition on a more than 32GB disk partition. As a result, you cannot directly format a 64GB memory card nor USB flash drive to FAT32. So what will you do when you must format a 64GB SD card to FAT32?

Fortunately, besides the Windows built-in utility, when you cannot format your 64GB SD card or USB flash drive to FAT32, you still have a chance. A third-party & powerful FAT32 format tool can help resolve this issue effectively. Read on and download the remarkable formatting tool for help.

Full Guide to Format SD Card to FAT32

Speaking of the SD card format tool, some of you may try to search online, spending time and energy to test the found tools. Here, we'd like to recommend you try EaseUS Partition Master.

Unlike the Windows built-in utilities, it breaks the limitations of FAT32 on Windows PC and storage devices. In other words, you can directly format your 64GB, 128GB, and even larger SD card to FAT32 without losing storage capacity as well as affecting the SD card read/write speed. Besides FAT32, this software also supports to format your device to NTFS, ReFS, FAT16, Ext2, Ext3, etc.

Connect your SD card to your computer and start to format your 32GB/64GB/128GB SD card to FAT32 with ease.

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Step 1: Launch EaseUS Partition Master, right-click the partition you intend to format and choose 'Format'.

Step 2: In the new window, enter the Partition label, choose the FAT32 file system, and set the cluster size according to your needs, then click 'OK'.

Step 3: Then you will see a warning window, click 'OK' in it to continue.

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Step 4: Click the 'Execute Operation' button in the top-left corner to review the changes, then click 'Apply' to start formatting the partition to FAT32.

When the formatting process finishes, you can directly unplug your SD card and use it on other devices for game storing or photography again. You can also use it on your Windows and Mac computers without any issue.

FAT32 vs. NTFS vs. exFAT: Which Is The Best for Your SD Card?

Besides FAT32, NTFS & exFAT are also available while formatting an SD card using Windows utilities - Disk Management, File Explorer, CMD or third-party partition manager. But do you know which is the best format for your SD card? Here in the following, we'll show you the difference among FAT32, NTFS and exFAT, and give you a suitable suggestion to choose the right file system for your SD card or USB drive.

Comparison Among FAT32, NTFS and exFAT

FAT32, exFAT, and NTFS are all compatible file systems on Windows PC. Here is a basic comparison:

Supported OSWindows 95/2000/XP/7/8.1/8/10Windows 10/8/7/XP/Vista/2000Windows Vista/7/8/8.1/10
Max Cluster Size64KB64KB32768KB
Max Formatting Capacity32GB2TB16EB
Max File Size4GB256TB16EB

Next are a conclusion of the advantages and disadvantages of the three popular file systems that will help you understand their application case better.


  • NTFS is regarded as the most modern file system which is widely used on system drive by default.
  • FAT32 is not as efficient as NTFS, but it owns a greater compatibility with other operating systems. As for the compatibility, FAT32 is still the most widespread one.
  • exFAT is regarded as an alternative file system to replace FAT32, with greater compatibility than NTFS on more devices and operating systems.

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  • NTFS: No realistic file-size or partition size limits.
  • FAT32: 4 GB maximum file size, 8 TB maximum partition size.
  • exFAT: No realistic file-size or partition size limits.

Which File System Should You Choose for SD Card?

Which file system should you choose for your SD card or USB drive? Follow the suggestions below to set a suitable format for your devices:


Applies to: Small SD card, USB drive with 32GB or smaller storage, gaming storage card, etc.

If your SD card storage is smaller than 32GB, and you don't plan to store large files (larger than 4GB for a single file) on the card, FAT32 is the best format.

Whenever you need to convert NTFS to FAT32 on 64GB SD card or 128GB USB drive, you can apply EaseUS Partition Master with the steps on this page for help.


Applies to: Cellphone storage, camera, digital camera, camcorder, GoPro, DJI Drones, etc. large SD cards.​

If your SD card or USB is 64GB or even bigger, or you need to store large files (single file bigger than 4GB), exFAT is recommended. Although it's similar to FAT32 as of compatibility, it doesn't have any storage limitations.


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Applies to: Large USB drive or external hard drive, Windows hard drive partitions, etc.

NTFS is the Windows-based file system, and it adopts more advanced technology than that of FAT32 and exFAT. If you are simply using the SD card between your Windows computer and the digital device, meanwhile, do not expect any file size or storage size imitation, use NTFS to achieve the best SD card performance. Again, EaseUS Partition Master is the unique solution to convert FAT32 to NTFS without formatting or losing data.

How to Format SD Card to FAT32 - FAQs

1. Can I format a 64GB SD card to FAT32?

Since the 64GB has exceeded the maximum FAT32 capacity limit, Windows File Explorer and Disk Management won't allow for formatting it to FAT32. However, EaseUS Partition Master can make it without trouble. Download EaseUS FAT32 formatter

  • Connect the 64GB sd card to your Windows computer
  • Right-click the SD card and choose Format
  • Select FAT32 as the file system
  • Apply the changes.

2. How do I change from exFAT to FAT32?

  • Right-click on the exFAT partition and choose Delete Volume.
  • Right-click again on the unallocated partition and choose New Simple Volume.
  • Follow the wizard to create a new partition and assign the volume as a FAT32partition.
  • Read more about how to convert exFAT to NTFS or FAT32.

3. Can you format a 128gb SD card to FAT32?

In the same way to format a 64GB SD card to FAT32, you need to download EaseUS Partition Master to format a larger 128GB SD card to FAT32. No matter what capacity of your SD card is, you can directly format the SD card without losing disk storage with the help of the most efficient and powerful SD card formatting tool.

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