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Old 06-06-2011, 01:29 AM   #1
sirhawkeye
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can the Ford Sync system read/use USB Hard drive

Can the USB port with the Sync system recognize and access a USB hard drive?

I know the port is designed for like USB flash drives and connecting phones to it via USB cables, but can it also work with a portable USB hard drive?

I have a 2010 Focus with Sync factory installed. Reason I'm asking is because I have about 30GB of music, and want to be able to take the drive with me on trips (and I don't currently own an MP3 player with 30GB of space unfortunately--mine is only an 4GB).


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Old 06-06-2011, 06:11 AM   #2
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possibly if the drive is usb powerd, but somehow i would think not...
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:03 AM   #3
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Only one way to find out.
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:03 AM   #4
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ive recently acquired a 2012 ford focus and done just this!

it works perfectly.

bought a 250GB segate portable usb drive; formatted it as FAT32 (very important, as SYNC wont recognize NTFS >:| ) put about 180GB of music on it and voila! the only drawback to a large library is SYNC told me that voice selection for music is disabled.
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:27 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by ericab View Post
ive recently acquired a 2012 ford focus and done just this!

it works perfectly.

bought a 250GB segate portable usb drive; formatted it as FAT32 (very important, as SYNC wont recognize NTFS >:| ) put about 180GB of music on it and voila! the only drawback to a large library is SYNC told me that voice selection for music is disabled.
That's a bit stupid that Sync can't read NTFS drives... seeing that NTFS is explicitly (and I think the only operating system) that uses by Windows operating systems only. It was designed by Microsoft, so as to why their own software can't read it puzzles me (maybe to prevent people from porting around gigantic drives of stuff--possibly overload the Sync system because after a point, maybe Sync can't read stuff from the drive--you know because for MP3s, it assigns an IDE that is uses to sort out the data on the drive, etc.)

But at least I can use a decent sized drive. And yes, my drive is USB powered rive, as are most laptop portable external drives. It's that or spend a lot on a 32GB flash drive, which costs about as much as a 160GB external hard drive, which was caused me to ask.
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:30 PM   #6
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This also makes me wonder why Ford just doesn't charge maybe an extra $100 for the Sync option, and then just have built-in flash memory that you can only copy music to (From CDs for USB flash drives), but not allow you to copy it off the car's internal flash memory (for copyright reasons--to prevent people from sharing music illegally).

I think this would also make the Sync system a good seller, not that it isn't already in Ford vehicles, but it would make it that much more desirable... At least for me, I have maybe only a fraction of my music collection that I listen too.. And it would be nice if I didn't have to port around a USB drive or hard drive, and just be able to upload my favorite music directly to the car, and to know that it'll be there whenever I drive the car (no more forgetting my flash drive on long trips, and having to listen to satalite or local radio...)
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Old 06-07-2011, 12:05 AM   #7
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I just bought a couple of 8gig thumbdrives and loaded them with the music i wanted. sync hates my 120gig ipod classic full of tunes.
anyone notice when you do a play all it randomly selects songs but seems to have a few thats its favorites, and will play them 3 or so times within half an hour? annoying as hell when you have 8 gigs of music...
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Old 06-07-2011, 10:10 AM   #8
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FAT32? Ugh, can't stand it. I can't count the number of times I've tried to copy a 4+ Gb file to a drive only to be told it's "too big". All my HDDs are formatted to NTFS. So thumb drives it is.

And yes, I have yet to see something that shuffles music well.
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Old 06-07-2011, 10:23 AM   #9
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I'm guessing the reasoning behind not having flash memory in a car has something to do with licensing and the fact that almost everyone has a MP3 player. FAT32 is fine for car audio - I would suggest getting a mobile laptop drive and formating it into FAT32 and copying your music on that.

This guy would work perfectly -
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148407
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Old 06-07-2011, 11:59 AM   #10
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I'm guessing the reasoning behind not having flash memory in a car has something to do with licensing and the fact that almost everyone has a MP3 player. FAT32 is fine for car audio - I would suggest getting a mobile laptop drive and formating it into FAT32 and copying your music on that.

This guy would work perfectly -
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148407
that's the exact one i got... works quite well. if the drive isnt being accessed, for say 5 minutes (you switch from AUX to AM/FM for example) the drive will power itself down. the 5 minute timer can be set from some bundled software from within windows. great reviews too
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