1. lifereinspired's Avatar
    Hi!

    I've recently purchased a small WiFi travel router that also allows me to plug in my external hard drive (HDD) so that my Android phone can access the files wirelessly. It was originally formatted NTFS but I couldn't get Android to read the files when I connected wired via an OTG cable. Would the same be true for accessing the files wirelessly? What file format would you use for the drive? It's 3TB so if I use FAT32, I'll have to have 2 paritions. However, this probably has the widest compatibility. I also have streaming media boxes that I use when traveling & it would be helpful if they could also read the files since occasionally, the wifi in hotels isn't up to streaming from online services. This would either be an Amazon Fire TV 4k box (previous gen, not current) or a Roku box.

    Thanks so much in advance!
    04-17-2018 03:50 PM
  2. SpookDroid's Avatar
    Android will only work with FAT32 (not recommended for large drives, plus it will limit your file sizes to 4GB) or ExFAT (most common standard now). NTFS is a Microsoft file system, so only Windows and devices that pay the royalties to use the format can access those.

    That being said, I don't know exactly how the WiFi HD works, since technically the router is the one accessing the drive, not your phone (as opposed to when you plug them in directly). If that's the case, you need to check the formats that the router can read, rather than the ones the phone can. ExFAT should be fairly universal if you want to reformat your drive, but if your router can do NTFS, then you might just plug it in and be done with it. Same goes for the streaming devices, since they don't actually read from the drive, you just need compatibility from the file you're playing.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    04-17-2018 04:19 PM
  3. lifereinspired's Avatar
    Thanks so much for taking the time to respond! I really appreciate it. It definitely helped me better understand what is happening when I use the HDD connected to the WiFi unit. I wondered if the WiFi connection made a difference in how the files are read and it appears from what you said, that certainly is the case.

    Thanks again! I really appreciate you taking the time to share your knowledge to help me. It was extremely beneficial!
    SpookDroid likes this.
    04-18-2018 02:30 PM
  4. hallux's Avatar
    If the router supports writing to NTFS, that can be used. The file sharing protocol on the router is what is writing to the disk, not the device you're using to access it remotely (in this case your phone).

    This is similar to sharing files between a Mac and a PC - the PC can write NTFS while the Mac can't (natively) but when trying to copy a file from the Mac to the PC it goes without a hitch in a "push" circumstance because ultimately the PC is performing the write operation, not the Mac. I've done this Mac to PC file copy at work...
    SpookDroid likes this.
    04-18-2018 02:54 PM
  5. SpookDroid's Avatar
    04-18-2018 04:43 PM

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