By Lucas / Last Updated March 4, 2022

The Error: The volume is too big for FAT32

I have been trying to format a 500GB external hard drive to FAT32 for my PlayStation 3, and my PS3 only recognizes FAT32 rather than NTFS. Then I tried to format it in my Windows 7 computer, but it doesn’t work. So I tried to format my 500GB external hard drive with command prompt afterwards, then when it gets 99 percent I got an error message: the volume is too big for FAT32. Do you guys people know how to figure it out? Are there some free utilities to do that work?

The Volume Is Too Big for FAT32

Why The Volume Is Too Big for FAT32 Error Happened?

As a matter of fact, you might encounter the situation: you can’t format an external hard drive or USB flash drive larger than 32GB into FAT32 in Disk Management, you can only see NTFS or exFAT in file system section. It’s worth to mention that Windows allows you to format a external storage disk which is larger than 32GB to FAT32 with DOS command prompt. Nevertheless, if the hard drive is larger than 1TB, you will get the error: The volume is too big for FAT32. By the way, you may trap in another FAT32 limitation: file is too large for destination file system (you will find the error when you transfer a single file larger than 4GB into FAT32 partition).

You may format it to FAT32 with DiskPart, the command is: format fs=fat32 quick. After that, you may find that DiskPart format FAT32 and the volume size is too big error occurs. That is to say, the format is failed due to volume too big for FAT32.

Best Three Ways to Fix The Volume Is Too Big for FAT32 in Windows 7/8/10

There are three ways to fix it via best free format tool. We will describe you the details about format external hard disk to FAT32.

Fix # 1: Command Prompt

Command Prompt is one of the solutions, the steps are as follows:

  • Click Start button and type cmd in searing box.

  • Right click Command Prompt and choose Run as Administrator.

  • Then type the command to format volume to FAT32:

format /FS:FAT32 G: (where G: is the drive letter of the disk you want to format)

If this way does not work, you could try to format large (1TB or more) external hard drive or USB to FAT32 with the best free FAT32 format tool.

Fix # 2: Format NTFS to FAT32 Directly

There are so many FAT32 format utilities, like FAT32 Format, SmartDisk FAT32 Format Utility, etc. Comparing with these format tools, AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard beats all these disk partitioning software due to its functionality and specialty. It will enable you to format large external hard drive or USB dirve (500GB, 1TB or more) to FAT32 without any issues to fix the volume is too big for FAT32 windows 7/8/10. The most important thing is that Partition Assistant Standard gives you the two methods to format.

1. Download Partition Assistant Standard, install and run it.

2. Right click the 1TB external hard drive on the main window, select Format Partition at the drop down menu.

Format Partition 500GB Drive

3. Choose FAT32 in File System for the 500GB NTFS formatted drive, press OK.

Choose FAT32 500GB

4. Hit Apply to start format the volume from NTFS to FAT32.

Apply 500GB Drive

This way will erase all the data on your hard drive.

Fix # 3: Convert NTFS to FAT32 without Losing Data

1. Select NTFS to FAT32 Converter on Partition Assistant’s home window.

NTFS to FAT32 Converter

2. Tick NTFS to FAT32, click Next.


3. Choose E partition which is the large hard drive you want to format, hit Next.

Choose NTFS Partition

4. Confirm the operation to convert the hard drive from NTFS to FAT32, clickProceed.


Tips: Make sure you have checked the Check and repair partition before converting it option.

The problem FAT32 too large for format will be solved. Now, you could use the large hard disk or USB to satisfy your needs. Besides, you will enjoy the experience of AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional which makes you can allocate free space from one to another, convert MBR to GPT for Windows 11 upgrade, migrate OS to SSD, and so on. For server users, you could try the Server edition with more advanced features.