Hard drive format question

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CondorCluster
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Hard drive format question

Post by CondorCluster » Fri Mar 02, 2018 6:16 am

Hi,

I have bought a 2Tb USB drive that I want to use to store all my videos, music and other media on.

Currently formatted in FAT32, as I would like to be able to plug into TV, Playstation etc, and play media straight off the disk.

I would also like to store some of my personal documents on the drive as well, but would need to password protect (encrypt) those files.

The question I have, is it possible to create a partition of the USB external drive in another file format that can be encrypted (NTFS. ext3?), but still have the drive readable when plugging it into a TV/Playstation type device? (i.e. would having an encrypted bit on the drive confuse the TV/PS?)

Thanks,
CC.
Linux Mint 17.3 XFCE 64bit
Lenovo Thinkpad T420

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catweazel
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Location: Australian Antarctic Territory

Re: Hard drive format question

Post by catweazel » Fri Mar 02, 2018 6:27 am

CondorCluster wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 6:16 am
Hi,

I have bought a 2Tb USB drive that I want to use to store all my videos, music and other media on.

Currently formatted in FAT32, as I would like to be able to plug into TV, Playstation etc, and play media straight off the disk.

I would also like to store some of my personal documents on the drive as well, but would need to password protect (encrypt) those files.

The question I have, is it possible to create a partition of the USB external drive in another file format that can be encrypted (NTFS. ext3?), but still have the drive readable when plugging it into a TV/Playstation type device? (i.e. would having an encrypted bit on the drive confuse the TV/PS?)
What you want to do raises a few dilemmas. If you format the drive as FAT32, you're limited to a maximum 4GB video size. If you partition the drive, there's no guarantee that your "TV/Playstation type device" will see any partitions at all. If you want a linux partition then you're better off with ext4 rather than ext3. If you format a partition as either NTFS or FAT32, you won't be able to set linux permissions. Furthermore, my standard advice to people who ask about encryption is that if they have to ask then they should avoid it until they've thoroughly researched the subject and are fully aware of the ramifications if something goes wrong. In your case, I would recommend you take a look at VeraCrypt, which can create an encrypted file container that can be opened in Windwoes and linux as if it were a disk in its own right, rather than any other form of encryption. VeraCrypt is by far the safest route to secure your files.

There are posts that you can find using the forum search describing the best way to use and setup VeraCrypt. As for the above issues, I recommend that you experiment with partitioning and file systems, put a few files on the partitions and see how your devices react.
A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it. - Max Planck

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CondorCluster
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Re: Hard drive format question

Post by CondorCluster » Fri Mar 02, 2018 7:59 am

Hi catweazel,

I have in past used an external drive that was encrypted using linux (ext4 I guess).

Just not sure about mixing different types on the same drive. As you said it could cause problems when connected to a smartTV or console.

I'll look into that VeraCrypt, as that could be the solution to use. Perhaps also archiving the files into a password protected rar/zip may achieve the same thing, though maybe not as secure.

Cheers,
CC.
Linux Mint 17.3 XFCE 64bit
Lenovo Thinkpad T420

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