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I have a 3 TB External Hard-drive, however, it was previously used with a Windows desktop and uses an MBR partition table and the single partition is using NTFS. As a result, I've been using various software solutions to mount the disk on OS X.

The full context of the question is this: If I were to purchase a second external hard drive, reformatted using GUID partition table and HFS+, would I see better performance in OS X reading from the disk?

It is typically used for media playback, so it is read-intensive and I was simply not seeing this performance issue on my Windows workstation or the Linux server this device was previously attached to.

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Limits on size and GPT are not related to USB speed. Your question appears to be about NTFS vs HFS+ speed and not USB speed. Could you make the question and title correspond – Mark Jan 28 '13 at 18:56
Thank you. I've updated my title to better correspond to the full context of the question: Whether or not filesystem and partition table types would impact USB transfer on an OS X system. – tony_perkis666 Jan 28 '13 at 23:42
Honestly, access patterns are what determine speed and they're largely task-dependant. Your best bet here would be to format one way, measure using something like Black Magic, format the other way and measure again. – Ian C. Jan 29 '13 at 1:02
Thank you @IanC. That'll be something I need to look into when migrate the data to a larger disk soon; I'll try it using the new format and see what happens. – tony_perkis666 Jan 29 '13 at 1:17

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