Formatting from NTFS to FAT32...Problem

Disclaimer - I’m a graphic designer, not a computer tech - so if I’ve missed something simple I apologize for wasting your time.  I had to get a 7 gig file from a friends computer to my ext. HD, so I had to re-format the MyBook to NTFS to transfer the file.  I used the command prompt in Windows 7 to accomplish that.  I didn’t realize then that Macs set NTFS drives to read only, and that’s a problem since my iMac is my primary computer.

Now, I have all my files off of the MyBook onto my Windows 7 OS PC.  I have downloaded WD’s formatting program to re-format to FAT32 so this thing can work with my mac again.  I open the “WD FAT32 Formatter, v2.00”, select the external HD and “Restore factory original FAT32 partition” and click start.  I click “ok”, “yes”, etc, and the error pops up -

“Can’t open image file!  Please reinstall the software.”

I tried reinstalling the formatter, but to no avail.  Any ideas?

Thanks in advance for any help!

Oh yeah…it’s an older MyBook Essential 500gb (Model Number WD5000H1U-00.)

Well, I may have made *some* progress, I re-installed and the previous error message went away - but now it says “Can’t copy image to disk!”.  Anyone know what to do here?  Could it have something to do with the fact that I have Windows 7 64-bit?

I can’t help with you problem, but if in future you need to transfer files larger than the 4GB FAT32 limit, you can split the files into two or more chunks using WinRAR, and then reassemble them at the destination.

I wish I would’ve asked that beforehand…lol.


A couple of things here:

  1. You actually don’t need the FAT 32 formatter, here.   Your Mac will format the drive in FAT 32 under the MS-DOS partitioning scheme.
  2. You will have a file size limitation of 4 GB’s on the drive with the FAT 32 file format.
  3. You need to make sure that you back up your data on the drive, first, before reformatting the drive;  because you will lose the data on the drive when you do this. 
  4. Also, once you do this, you will have to keep a backup because there will be tendency for data corruption when you pass data back and forth between the Mac and PC.

Thanks Bill.  I actually finally got the formatter to work on my PC last night, but will keep in mind the possibility of data corruption - I didn’t realize that would be an issue.