Can you format a 128GB SD card to FAT32? Sometimes, you may need to format 128GB SD card to FAT32 . This post from MiniTool tells you whether you can do that and how to do that.
Do You Need to Format 128GB SD Card FAT32?
FAT32 is the most popular file system. It is used by many devices. However, nowadays, the SD card is getting larger and larger, while some devices still only recognize the FAT32 file system. Therefore, some people may want to know whether they can format 128GB SD card FAT32. Here are two examples from forums.
I have a camera that requires an SD card with a USH-1 rating and U3 video level. The card I have is 128GB. The camera requires the card to be formatted with FAT32. When trying to format the card in Windows 10 Pro, the formatting options presented are NTFS and exFAT. I have tried exFAT but the camera will not recognize the card…
I got an SDXC (SanDisk Ultra 128GB UHS- I Card) and I thought that I might be able to use it for my modded Nintendo 3DS xl. But I know that the format has to be FAT32, how do I change the format?
How to format 64GB SD card to FAT32 for free? Here are 3 free ways with step-by-step guide to format SD card to FAT32 in Windows 10.
Can You Format a 128GB SD Card to FAT32?
Theoretically, on a hard drive with 512-byte sectors, the real size limit of the FAT32 partition is 2TB. On a hard drive with 2 KB sectors and 32 KB clusters, the real size limit is 8 TB. On a hard drive with 4 KB sectors and 64 KB clusters, the real size limit is 16 TB. So, theoretically, you can format a 128GB SD card to FAT32.
However, you may also hear that the FAT32 partition has a size limit of 32GB. This is also true. The 32GB limit was set by Microsoft when porting Windows 95 Shell to Windows NT. At that time, they thought 32GB is enough for the entire life cycle of the NT4.0 operating system, but it turns out they were wrong.
As a result, most devices and Windows built-in tools don’t allow you to format a partition larger than 32GB to FAT32. If you insist on formatting 128GB SD card to FAT32 on Windows 10/11, you will encounter the following issues:
Some modern devices requiring only a FAT32 SD card may be capable of formatting 128GB SD card to FAT32 by itself.
#1. The FAT32 File System Option Is Not Available
If you attempt to format the 128GB SD card via File Explorer or Disk Management, you will find that the FAT32 file system option is not offered to you.
#2. The Volume Size Is Too Big
If you attempt to format the USB drive using DiskPart, you will receive this message “Virtual Disk Service error: The volume size is too big”. Then, the format process will fail.
#3. The Format Process Is Stuck on 0 Percent Completed
Some people may recommend you format 128GB SD card to FAT32 under CMD or PowerShell using the “ format #: /fs:fat32 ” command (# is the disk number of the USB drive). However, I tried it and found that the format process is stuck on 0 percent completed. In addition, many people reported this issue online. Thus, I think this method won’t succeed.
Can you format a 128GB SD card to FAT32 on Windows 10/11? Yes, you can, but you need to use third-party software.
How Do I Fix "Windows Was Unable to Complete the Format" Error
How to Format 128GB SD Card to FAT32
MiniTool Partition Wizard is a professional partition and disk management tool. It can break the 32GB limit, formatting a partition up to 2TB to FAT32 file system. Therefore, you can use this tool to format 128GB SD card to FAT32. Here is the guide:
Step 1: Connect the SD card to your PC via an SD card reader. Some PCs may have an SD card slot. If your PC has such a slot, you can insert the SD card into the PC directly.
Step 2: Launch MiniTool Partition Wizard. Right-click on the partition of the SD card and choose the Format option from the context menu.
Step 3: On the Format Partition window, expand the File System drop-down menu and select FAT32 . Then, click the OK button.
Step 4: Click the Apply button to execute the pending operation.
Then, you will get a 128GB FAT32 SD card and you can use it on other devices.
In most cases, the 128GB SD card is formatted to exFAT by default and it may have stored some data. Reformatting the 128GB SD card will delete all data on the SD card. Therefore, some people may want to know whether there is a way to convert exFAT to FAT32 without data loss.
Currently, there is no such a way. If the SD card is in exFAT format. You must back up data first and then reformat it to FAT32.
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