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Is there any way I can re-format my external hard drive to accept larger data files without erasing the current stored data on the drive??

  • How is it formatted now? – Mitch May 23 '13 at 9:16
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A reformat, by nature, destroys all data on a disk. There's no way of avoiding this.

If you need to change the filesystem on it (e.g. from FAT to NTFS or some other change - I assume something along these lines is the nature of your question?), then by far your best bet would be to back up everything onto another device and then copy back after the reformat.

  • Thank you - this is going to be one hell of a task as I have just under 1T of data stored! – Frankie May 23 '13 at 8:55
  • Start it going and go for a good long walk! :-) – SimplySimon May 23 '13 at 9:15
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No, if you format a Hard-drive you should backup your Data.

read this: Is possible to format hard drive without losing files?

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If you want to move from ext3 to 4 that is possible without having to format the disc:

http://www.cyberciti.biz/tips/linux-convert-ext3-to-ext4-file-system.html

But even then you should always back up your data somewhere else in case the process goes wrong and your data is lost.

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