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Old 12-07-2003, 09:51 PM   #1
LQ Newbie
Registered: Oct 2003
Posts: 11

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Problems formatting partition w/ FAT32!!

Hi, I'm trying to use the Linux Answer here... here
I found the discussion here... here

which explains I need to use mkdosfs , but I still have problems trying to do that...

Now I get

pcp02620325pcs:/home/dave # mkdosfs -F 32 /dev/hdd3
mkdosfs 2.8 (28 Feb 2001)
mkdosfs: unable to allocate space for FAT image in memory
pcp02620325pcs:/home/dave #

What does that mean?

(This is fdisk for that drive:
Disk /dev/hdd: 120.0 GB, 120034123776 bytes
255 heads, 63 sectors/track, 14593 cylinders
Units = cylinders of 16065 * 512 = 8225280 bytes

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/hdd1 1 96 771088+ 82 Linux swap
/dev/hdd2 * 97 5773 45600502+ 83 Linux
/dev/hdd3 5774 14592 70838617+ f Win95 Ext'd (LBA)

Command (m for help): q
I'm trying to format the hdd3 part, so i can share between linux and windows...

If i try and just use the defaults, it gives me:

pcp02620325pcs:/home/dave # mkdosfs /dev/hdd3
mkdosfs 2.8 (28 Feb 2001)
mkdosfs: Attempting to create a too large file system

shouldn't a 70 gig partition be ok? Should I break it down even more?

edit: sorry, i was going to delete that post, but found i couldn't... figured this might get more traffic...

Last edited by KyngNothing; 12-07-2003 at 10:05 PM.
Old 12-07-2003, 10:40 PM   #2
Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Trento, Italy
Distribution: Debian testing
Posts: 394

Rep: Reputation: 30
fat does not has an inode per file: instead it has a int32 per cluster, which may be 1kb to 32kb
I think the error means exacly what it says: can't manage such a huge table (280Mb).

you can try specifying the -s option, like -s 32 (16k clusters) or -s 64

note that some systems have a 64gb limit on a single fs, i suggest not to exceed this size.

imho once you have the partition, the safest thing is to format it with native os (i.e. win)

ps: on fat16 (i.e. not specifying -F 32) the size limit is 2 GB !

Last edited by ac1980; 12-07-2003 at 10:42 PM.
Old 12-07-2003, 11:26 PM   #3
LQ Newbie
Registered: Oct 2003
Posts: 11

Original Poster
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ALright, formatting in windows is working, but i couldn't get mkdosfs to work for a 30 gig partition either...

thanks for the help


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