Hi. I own a PC laptop, running Windows XP with Photoshop CS4 and Lightroom 3 installed.
I'm currently attending a residency at a photography school in New York. They have amazing facilities, but it's all Mac based.
So, in order to be able to work on my stuff on the Macs at the school, I decided to purchase an external hard drive (5400rpm) that has both USB 2.0 and Firewire 800 connections.
The drive came formatted for Mac out of the box. So from what I've been led to understand - the hard drive will not be recognized by my PC. I did a bit of research on the web and found the following options for making the hard drive cross-platform compatible and the questions I have for each method:1. Formatting the drive to FAT32.
- I've read that FAT32 is good for small capacity drives, such as usb pen drives, but not so good for large drives. Is this true?
- I've read that FAT32 could be slow when transferring data. Will this have any affect when working on images on this drive with Photoshop and/or Lightroom?
- In a different forum, someone said that FAT32 is not very reliable and that one should not store valuable data on a FAT32 formatted drive, because it is not highly unlikely that files will become corrupt.
- I also am not sure if it matters whether I format the hard drive to FAT32 using Windows or the Mac.2. Formatting drive to HFS+ and using some sort of 3rd party software on the PC to work (such as this for example).
- Is this a good method? What are the drawbacks (apart from having to purchase additional software)?3. I read something about exFAT... what is it? And can it help me with this?
It's important for me to note that it is essential that the drive performs optimally when connected to the Mac, while with the PC performance is not as important. If it works well with the PC - that's great, and if not I'll just sync it to the laptop's internal drive and work with the internal.
Yet with the Mac computers - since they are the schools and not mine - I don't have that option. Therefore it is vital that I can work with Photoshop and Lightroom on the Macs with this external hard drive without issues.
If anyone can please help me out with suggestions, I'd be very grateful. Thank you!