Discussions

More than a smart TV—a better TV. Learn more about using your Roku TV, locate help resources, and share your experience.
cancel
Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
FloridaMike
Level 7

TCL Roku TV using a Seagate 4TB drive to play movies (.mp4)

God bless the TCL techs, but they had no clue on this issue.  Same with the Roku techs.  

I am in the process of digitizing my entire DVD collection (575 DVDs).  I want to play my movies on my Roku TV via Roku Media Player via an external hard drive vis a USB.

     TCL Roku TV Model: 49S405 (Roku TV 7104X)                                                                                             Software version: 9.4.0 build 4200-30                                                                                                           Seagate 4TB Backup Plus Drive USB 3.0 (box says backward compatible to USB 2.0)

After digitizing a few movies I tried attaching to the TV using the included USB 3.0 cable.  Roku Media Player won't recognize the drive.

Someone told me it could be the formatting type.  The 4TB hard drive will format to NTFS or ExFat.  Roku Media Player will not recognize the drive with either format. 

     1. Could it be the TV doesn't recognize the drive because it is a USB 3.0 (even though it says backward compatible to USB 2.0)?  Would using a powered USB 2.0 bridge help?                                                           2.  Could it be that the TV doesn't recognize NTFS or ExFat formatting?

A 500gb portable drive plugged into a TV USB port formatted to Fat32 works just fine with 2 of the same movies (.mp4) I tried on the 4TB drive.  I just don't want to use multiple drives for my library. 

Thanks for any help!

Mike

0 Kudos
6 REPLIES 6\
atc98092
Community Streaming Expert

Re: TCL Roku TV using a Seagate 4TB drive to play movies (.mp4)

Roku devices support a USB connected drive with the FAT16, FAT32, NTFS, EXT2, EXT3, and HFS+ file systems. I haven't heard of any problems with drives of that size. But I've never tried one personally. Is your drive externally powered? If not, that might be an issue. 

Are you certain it's not recognized the drive, or is it just not seeing the media? There should be no issue with the drive being USB 3.0. But if your media has an unsupported video or audio codec the file might not appear. While that's unlikely with the MP4 container, it's still a possibility. And since the same media played from a different drive, that's likely not the issue.

Dan

Roku Community Streaming Expert

Help others find this answer and click "Accept as Solution."
If you appreciate my answer, maybe give me a Kudo.

I am not a Roku employee, just another user.
0 Kudos
Tim_Hare
Level 9

Re: TCL Roku TV using a Seagate 4TB drive to play movies (.mp4)

I saw in another post (can't find it right now) that the issue is the amount of time it takes to deal with a large drive.  Someone else had an 8TB drive and determined they just needed to wait long enough for it to "recognize" the drive - I have no idea what it is doing during that time, but possibly building an index into the content?

0 Kudos
rumplestilts
Level 8

Re: TCL Roku TV using a Seagate 4TB drive to play movies (.mp4)

Having just had a sort-of similar experience, I thought I'd post my resolution.

The exFAT format does not work with the Roku (nor the TCL Roku TV). It will support NTFS, FAT16/32, and ext (3/4 if I remember correctly). When I plugged in my exFAT drive, it was not recognized and I saw the screen notification about the supported formats. I copied the files from the USB drive to my internal (PC) hard drive, formatted the USB drive to FAT32, copied the files back to that drive, plugged it back into the Roku USB port, and the Media Player app recognized the drive and all the included files.

If you don't want to use NTFS for your 4TB, you could partition the drive and use FAT32 for the volumes. But do note that only the first partition will appear in your Roku as the Media Player's "navigation" is primitive and only will recognize that first volume.

The only other issue you may encounter is if a file is over 4GB, it will not be able to be copied over to the FAT drive (hence, why exFAT is useful - but not with the Roku).

As for the 4TB drive plugged directly into a Roku's USB port, you will probably require a powered USB hub (and I'm assuming your 4TB is one of the unpowered 2.5" type). A powered USB drive (one that has a wall wart for power) should work nicely.

Hope this info will be of some help.

TopShrop
Level 7

Re: TCL Roku TV using a Seagate 4TB drive to play movies (.mp4)

I have the exact same problem with 4 TCL Roku TVs.  They do not see the Seagate 2TB HDD, formatted to NTFS. 

0 Kudos
venugopal509
Level 7

Re: TCL Roku TV using a Seagate 4TB drive to play movies (.mp4)

Hi, Is it working when you change the format from exFAT to NTFS?

 

I did change the format to NTFS, but my TCL tv not recognizing the drive.

0 Kudos
atc98092
Community Streaming Expert

Re: TCL Roku TV using a Seagate 4TB drive to play movies (.mp4)

 I have a 4 GB thumb drive with some test videos. My Roku devices (that have a USB port) can read the drive and play the videos. The drive is formatted as FAT32. 

External hard drives that have a spinning platter inside (not a USB stick or SSD) sometimes require more power than is available from the USB port. If your drive isn't recognized by the Roku, I suggest using a powered USB hub to ensure the drive has enough power. 

Dan

Roku Community Streaming Expert

Help others find this answer and click "Accept as Solution."
If you appreciate my answer, maybe give me a Kudo.

I am not a Roku employee, just another user.
0 Kudos