Copy Files Bigger Than 4GB To A USB Drive

If you are having problems copying files bigger than 4GB into a USB drive, then you’ve come to the right place. Your drive is most likely formatted to FAT 16/32. To get past the 4GB limit, you will need to reformat your USB drive to NTFS.

I strongly suggest that you backup your files to a different drive, because reformatting involves erasing all data in the drive. In Ubuntu, you can reformat a USB drive using GParted. If you don’t have GParted installed, you can easily install it via Terminal with the following command:

sudo apt-get install gparted

Next, go to System > Administration > GParted to start the GParted application. Be careful when choosing drive. You don’t want to reformat your system drive. That would be disastrous. Pay particular attention to the partition name, mount point, and the drive size.

Once you have identified the correct drive, you will then unmount the drive. Once the drive is unmounted, you can now proceed to format the drive with NTFS. Click Apply to make your changes permanent. GParted will now format your drive.

You can now copy a file bigger than 4GB to the USB drive again. It should now work. It took me several times to figure out what was wrong. At first, I thought there was a problem with the file, or with my system, until I realized the 4GB file size limitation.