I need to write a few large files (larger than 4 GB) on a flash drive, but I can't do it, because the file system of the flash drive is MS-DOS (FAT32).

How should I format the flash drive, so I can write down large files into it, and then open it on a PC on windows and download these files? What file system should I choose when formatting the flash drive?

2 Answers 2


exFAT is the only format which will work for you as it will allow files greater than 4GB and work on Windows. Disk Utility can format using exFAT.

  • 1
    If this is the answer you were looking for, then mark it as the solution!
    – IconDaemon
    Apr 29, 2016 at 22:34

What is the capacity of your flash drive ?

More than 8GB ? If yes then NTFS will do.

If you want to use your flash drive on Windows, only FAT32 or NTFS will be nice.

If you haven't download yet, there is a lot of software that allow OS X to write into NTFS partitions. Like TUXERA NTFS or Paragon NTFS.

  • Why not just use exFAT?
    – Nikita
    Apr 29, 2016 at 17:38
  • NTFS will not do as it is not writable without 3rd party software. FAT32 also has limitations. IconDaemon is correct exFAT is the way to go Apr 29, 2016 at 21:10
  • Thank you for help! What is the difference between NTFS and exFAT (what limitations there are in the case of each of these file systems?)
    – Rumata
    Apr 29, 2016 at 22:24
  • I'll keep in mind that NTFS is also an option, thank you!
    – Rumata
    Apr 30, 2016 at 15:52

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