USB 2.0 Flash Drive (Memory stick) and cluster size

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Sumnernor, May 19, 2010.

  1. Sumnernor

    Sumnernor Supporting Actor

    Apr 18, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Munich, Germany
    Real Name:
    Sumner Northcutt
    I have a PC Windows XP/3 and a San Disk "Cruzer" 8 GB memory stick. I tried to copy data onto the memory stick which I thought was large enough and got the message that there was not enough space. The copied data was circa 3.7 GB with a little bit of space left. How can one tell what the cluster size is? How can one change it. I would like to copy circa 6 or 7 GB onto a 8 GB stick or is the "easiest" way to buy a 16 GB stick? I have many not very big files.
  2. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

    Apr 11, 1999
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    CHKDSK from the Command Prompt will tell you how many "bytes per allocation unit" are used. For a 8GB stick, it's probably 4K, maybe 8K.

    You can change the size by reformatting. With smaller clusters, you have more of them, and therefore use up more space keeping track of them. But you might be able to squeeze all the files on there. There's some math you can do to figure it out, although it might be faster just to try it.

    Another approach would be to ZIP up all the small files into a single .zip file, and then copy that to the USB stick. Then cluster size is not an issue. The resulting .zip might even be substantially smaller.

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