It's a 32 GB FAT32 USB thumb drive, and it seems to be having no trouble with my 13 GB iPhoto Library file. I thought there was a 4 GB file size limitation on this file system format?
There is a 4GB per file limit.
In your case OS/X is showing iPhoto Library as a single file, but reality it is a folder with many files inside. (All smaller than 4GB).
A lot of the time you will find on OS X that a file is not actually a file - it is a directory. A good example of this is an application which will appear to be a single
Yes, on FAT32 there is a file size limit, HOWEVER, it is 4gb PER FILE.
You may have a directory that is 50gb in size, however, no single file may be more then 4gb.
It depends on the cluster size how big the files can be. Take a look here, in the referenced support article it is described as follows:
But it is also the maximum file size which depends on the cluster size and also on the sector size selected, because the file size is calculated as
and the sector size is usually 512 bytes, but nowadays where we have hard disks with several terabytes capacity, it can be larger (e.g. 4 KB).
While it seems that this allows larger files, the design specification of FAT32 says that a file cannot exceed 4 GB, hence
The maximum number of clusters for Fat32 is limited to 268 435 445, and a cluster must not exceed 64 KB, see here. But it is also said that you can't format Fat32 with larger clusters than 32 KB. This means that theoretically, the maximum partition size is
Practically, it is lower than that, because usually you don't have 32 KB clusters. For Fat32 the default cluster size varies depending on the size of the partition between 4 KB (236 MB - 8 GB partitions) and 16 KB (16 GB - 32 GB partitions).
You can influence the maximum partition size when you are formatting the partition. The larger the cluster size and/or sector size, the larger the partition can be. But the file size is always limited to 4 GB.
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