Friday, August 22, 2008

Problem Solving - Part 2

Looks like Timm[ie] has beaten out the rest of my technical readers (are there any??? Edit: Hi Zach!) and came up with the flaw in Part 1. Flash drives come formatted as FAT32, which is aptly named, since it is a 32 bit file system, which limits files to 4GB.

Splitting the file wasn't a good option because they're FedExing it to the other company, so not requiring them to have to try and piece the file back together is a plus, but in the end might be what they do. Just doesn't gain much on just using a stack of DVDs.

I was able to see the 32 bit problem right away, but when it came to solutions, the engineers and I diverged. Since the file system rolls over and dies after 4GB, what's the next thing to try? We're not sure if they're going to have a *NIX box to plug it into, so bonus points for thinking of a solution that is OS independent, but if it's Unix only, I'll still give you credit.


  1. what? how does it not gain on splitting it and then dumping it onto a bunch of DVDs? same thing, only with the DVDs you actually have to go and insert each and every DVD, once on your end and once on their end.

    i guess it's not quite that big of a deal because it wouldn't be =that= many DVDs. but still.

    ah, the days when i had to rzsplit a file onto 30 floppies to get it anywhere. the days of dial-up. oh man.

  2. Splitting the file is the big loss, not having to swap out media.

    You need to get into radio. We're still using 1200 baud all the time. Back when I only had floppies, I never really needed to move data that much. All I had back then was QBasic programs...

  3. yeah i guess that's not the major concern in your case. For me that's the first thing that screams at my head though. i dont care how long it takes, as long as it can run in the background without me having to babysit it.

    yeah back in the CMS days i was transferring things like RPGMaker games, and Arcade game ROMs using floppies.

  4. shit. forgot i was on my brother's computer. anyways that ^ was me, Timm[ie], DDRKirby(ISQ). sorry bout that.

  5. You can format it in something that doesn't blow, for interoperability I'd just go with NTFS. AFAIK: You can also make a self-extracting RAR with winRAR, and that's super easy on both ends.

  6. oh, I think the self-extractor will only be functional in a Windows environment, but parting the files out and then combining them manually is pretty simple. Make a batch file for them if they have windows, or write a little script that just cats the files together in *nix. [ cat file.rar* > file.rar ] Then it's a one click or one command operation that you can write on the drive with a sharpie. To be honest I don't see where parting the file is a huge deal, but if it is, formating the drive is really the best way to go. Everything can read out from NTFS these days.