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How to Fix PS3 Can't Read NTFS USB Drive

Updated by Daisy on Mar 26, 2021
Written by Tracy King

"I have a 4GB Transformers - about 20 games on my PS3 Slim. I wish to back up all the files to an external hard drive or a USB device in case of system failure. Thinking that there is no need to invest in another hard drive, I bought a 16GB USB flash drive and formatted it into NTSF. But soon, I find that my PS3 doesn't recognize the USB drive with NTSF format. Is there any reliable solution that can fix the problem?"

Why Won't My PS3 Read My USB?

The PlayStation 3 (abbreviated in marketing as PS3) is a home video game console with gaming capabilities, a web browser, applications for services like YouTube and Netflix. But the PS3 hard drive cannot store files and can only be used to save games and download files from the Sony Store. To get smooth playback of all of your media, you must attach an external hard disk or USB drive to expand storage space.

We've recently noticed that many users have asked for help because they found that their PS3 cannot read their USB flash drive. Why would this problem happen? Here's the answer: The USB drive is NTFS. And PS3 can only read USB drive in FAT32. To solve this problem, you need to convert the USB drive from NTFS to FAT32. In this guide, we have listed 3 simple methods. Keep reading and check more details.

3 Methods to Fix PS3 Doesn't Read USB

To convert the USB drive from NTFS to FAT32, you have many choices. Some method requires you to have advanced computer knowledge. The other involves data deletion. Here we prepared three simple and easy methods, you can choose any one of them according to your needs.

Method 1. Convert NTFS to FAT32 without Data Loss

The easiest and most convenient method comes first. We recommend choosing a third-party tool to help you fix the PS3 can't read USB problem. EaseUS Partition Master is a professional application that specialized in partition management. With this software, you can change from NTFS to FAT32 without hassle. Let's check what can EaseUS Partition Master can do:

  • Supports other file systems, including exFAT, FAT16, Ext2/3/4, etc.
  • Supports to convert FAT/FAT32 to NTFS without formatting, no data loss.
  • Supports formatting 64GB/128GB UBS to FAT32 without limit.
  • Supports advanced features, including resizing partition, converting a disk to MBR/GPT, transferring OS, etc.

Now please download and launch this software on your computer and follow the guide below to fix your problem.

To format a USB drive to FAT32, follow these steps:

Step 1. Select the USB drive to format.

Connect the USB drive or pen drive to your computer. Download and launch EaseUS partition software. Right-click the USB drive you intend to format and choose "Format".

format USB - 1

Step 2. Set the drive letter and file system.

Assign a new partition label, file system (NTFS/FAT32/EXT2/EXT3), and cluster size to the selected partition, then click "OK".

format USB - 2

Step 3. Check the warning box.

Click "OK" if you see the Warning window. If you have important data on it, back up the data in advance.

format USB - 3

Step 4. Apply the changes.

Click the "Execute operation" button first, and then click "Apply" to format the USB drive.

format USB - 4

After formatting USB drive from NTFS to FAT32, you can successfully fix the problem of PS3 can't read NTFS USB drive. 

Method 2. Change NTFS to FAT32 using Windows File Explorer

This method is also very friendly to Windows beginners. The Windows built-in File Explorer can help you change NTFS to FAT32. But this method would format your USB drive first, so remember to make a backup before you try it. Here are the detailed steps:

Step 1. Connect your hard drive or external storage device to Windows PC.

Step 2. Double-click This PC/My computer to open File Explorer.

Step 3. Locate and right-click on the USB drive, select "Format".

Step 4. Set the FAT32 as the target file system, tick "Quick Format" and click "Start" to start the formatting.

Format USB to FAT32

When you finish the formatting, click "OK" to confirm. Now, your device is with FAT32.

Method 3. Format NTFS to FAT32 Using Disk Management

Another method you could try is Disk Management. With this method, the FAT32 option will be unavailable in the drop-down box if the drive size you need to format is larger than 32GB (Windows limitation). Also, back up data before your operations. 

Step 1. Right-click "This PC" or "My Computer" and click "Manage",  click "Disk Management".

Open Disk Management

Step 2. Choose your USB Drive, right-click the drive and choose "Format". Click "Yes".

Step 3. Name the drive and select the file system as "FAT32". Click "OK".

Format as FAT32

Now you can see your USB file system is FAT32.

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Updated by Daisy

Daisy is the Senior editor of the writing team for EaseUS. She has been working in EaseUS for over ten years, starting from a technical writer to a team leader of the content group. As a professional author for over 10 years, she writes a lot to help people overcome their tech troubles.

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Written by Tracy King

Tracy joined in EaseUS in 2013 and has been working with EaseUS content team for over 7 years. Being enthusiastic in computing and technology, she writes tech how-to articles and share technical solutions about Windows & Mac data recovery, file/system backup and recovery, partition management and iOS/Android data recovery.

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