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I am not sure where to ask this question, so perhaps it is physical limitation.

I have a 8 GB flash micro SD memory card. When I copy any file size of up to few gigabytes, copying happens normally. But if I am trying to copy file over 4 GB file, then the system tells me like insufficient memory on card, although 8 GB is available. So perhaps only 32 bit address is used for keeping size of file in micro SD card, or is my micro SD defective?

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migrated from electronics.stackexchange.com Jul 21 '11 at 22:12

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I think this would be more suitable for superuser, but likely your microsd card is formatted using the fat32 file system which limits file size to 4gb. If you try to copy over a file which is large than 4 gb (such as a dvd rip), the file system can't support it. –  pfyon Jul 21 '11 at 21:19

2 Answers 2

There are three things to consider here:

  1. There are different SD versions that support different capacities:

    • SD - 4GB
    • SDHC - 32GB
    • SDXC - 2TB
  2. Most filesystems are limited in their size. You need to pick a filesystem that is capable of using the entire size of the SD card. Which one you chose is also dependent on the environment you will be using it in. Some common choices for high capacity filesystems include:

    • FAT32 - 2TB
    • exFAT - 512TB
    • NTFS - 264 clusters (multiples of 512 bytes)
  3. Most filesystems have a limit on the size of any one individual file:

    • FAT32 - 4GB
    • exFAT - 512TB
    • NTFS - 16EB
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If the memory card's file system is FAT32, then it has a file limit of 4GB. To get over this limitation, you could format your memory card to the NTFS file system. If you don't want to lose all the information on the card, you could convert to NTFS using this command: convert G: /FS:NTFS in the Command Prompt (assuming your memory card's label is G: ) Be aware that the digital camera won't support NTFS.

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Yeah, there's a reason that FAT is used: everyone plays nice with it. –  MBraedley Jul 29 '11 at 11:05

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