How come I get an error saying not enough room when I try to copy a file to my external hard drive?

by on February 25, 2011

Q: Please excuse the really dumb question…I have a backup file that says it is 6.17 GB in size, and I am trying to copy it to an external hard drive that says it has 164 GB of free space. When I try this it says there is not enough room on the external HD. I can only assume I am not understanding the the numbers…Can you please explain? Thank so much. :)


2 Responses to “How come I get an error saying not enough room when I try to copy a file to my external hard drive?”
  1.  
    Picked as best answer

    Click on My Computer, right click on the external drive and select properties.

    First make sure there is enough free space on the drive, next see what it says for “File System”. This is probably going to be either FAT32 or NTFS.

    If it says NTFS you should be fine, if it says FAT32 that would explain the problem.

    FAT32 is an old file system format that only supports files of us to 2GB in size. To fix this you’d need to remove all your data from the drive and then reformat it (right click on the drive and click format…) making sure to select NTFS as the file system to use. Remember that formatting a drive destroys all the data on the drive, so take the data off the drive first if you need to do this stuff.

     
  2.  

    It is indeed a FAT32. Will be reformatting it this weekend…Looks like I have a big job ahead of me getting everything off that thing. (1000′s of photos.) Thank you so much for the help!