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I have an ~4.5GB file and am trying to burn it onto a DVD using power2go software on Win7 PC. When I trigger it to start burning, it stops with the following message:

file exceeds the file system size limitation

I've searched for the solution on this site (not found) and on the web: found some references to FAT32 limitation and the proposed fix is to switch to NTFS. But this hard drive is already NTFS.

Please help if you [may] know what the problem's cause is. Thank you!

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Do you only have one drive? – JNK Sep 9 '10 at 19:21
@JNK: The optical drive? Yes. – Sasha Sep 9 '10 at 20:41
up vote 1 down vote accepted

By default a DVD uses the ISO 9660 file-system to store files. This file-system stores file sizes as a 32-bit integer and as such has an inherit limit on file sizes being limited to about 232 bytes or ~4GB. There is an extension to the ISO 9660 spec that works around that limitation, however I'm guessing the software you're using doesn't support that extension. Perhaps try recording with Infrarecorder, which supports the extension.

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I'll give it a try. Will I need to "install" that extension somehow? or just using Infrarecorder should do the trick? Thank you. – Sasha Sep 9 '10 at 20:19
There may be a setting in Infrarecoder to enable it, but it should come installed with the software. – heavyd Sep 9 '10 at 20:34
Thank you, that worked! – Sasha Sep 14 '10 at 13:03

It sounds like the file is too big to fit on a standard DVD. (If we knew the exact size, in bytes, we could say for sure, but you're right at the limit so, I think, it's may be likely). You'll probably need to burn to a dual-layer DVD (assuming your drive supports the format).

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4.5 gibibytes (which is how windows measures files) is about 4.8 gigabytes (which is how DVD capacities are measured). Unfortunately, single layer DVDs are only 4.7 gigabytes, which is 4.37 gibibytes. See Wikipedia for more information.

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What filesystem are you trying to put on the DVD?

  • For ISO 9660 (the normal format for CDs, also often used for DVDs), it is possible in theory to create files larger than 4GB, but not all operating systems and burning programs support this.
  • For UDF (the intended format for DVDs, but not used so often), the file can be as big as the volume (which can go up to 128TB), but again maybe your burning program is buggy.
  • If the file is an image that you were trying to burn directly onto the DVD, check that you have configured your burning software accordingly.
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