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Discussion Starter #1
First of all, I just got my GMC Terrain a few days ago after custom ordering it almost 2 MONTHS ago, and so far I am LOVING it :)
(Still getting used to parking in parking lots though... never drove a "flat hooded" vehicle before LOL)

My first car mod, if you can really even call it one, is to get a small USB external HDD, and velcro it to the inside of the center console cubby. Just a while ago, I got back from Best Buy and had bought a Toshiba 320GB HDD that is USB powered, but whenever I plug it into the car, the drive keeps making this clicking sound, and the car never recognizes that I plugged it in.

Earlier today, I tested an 8GB Micro M2 memory card in the car by plugging it into a USB memory card reader, and then plugging that into the car. The car recognized the MP3s that I had on that card, but I am looking for something with more [virtual] storage space. Good news was that I know that the USB is ok.

Can anyone tell me what I need to look for in an external HDD, so that I am not constantly making trips back and forth between Best Buy and my house? Is USB powered a no-no, or can the Terrain not read harddrives at all? Or is it because the HDD I tried is a Fat32, and needs to be in a different format?

Any help would be appreciated!
- NT110
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Oh yeah, in case it wasnt obvious, I dont have the Nav system package in my car, so I also didnt get the internal 40GB HDD.
 

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The problem with car implementations of USB, is they they don't always deliver the full and proper amount of power to devices that are powered entirely from the USB port. Chances are likely that this is the case, providing the hard drives works fine otherwise when plugged into a normal PC USB port.

For now, you'd be best to stick with a lower power drive or flash-based drive, something that wont draw much power from the USB port. Or, get an external drive that used it's own DC power, and simply plug it in via. the power output on the console.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
scottyyyc said:
Or, get an external drive that used it's own DC power, and simply plug it in via. the power output on the console.
What about getting one of those dual-USB-powered Ext HDDs (basically uses 1 USB for data+power, and the other USB for just power), and plugging the data+power USB into the USB slot in the car, and the other USB into a USB-to-Car adapter and then plug that into the power outlet inside the cubby?

I dont know if the dual-USB-powered ones require 2 USBs because they require more power or not though. I cant seem to find power requirements on the boxes. They all just say "USB powered" or something similar. So, I am having a hard time comparing the HDD I just bought to others in terms of power requirements, so that I can get one that requires LESS power. As for the DC powered ones, it may be an option, but they are all so BIIIIIIIIG.
I also cant find the Terrain's USB power output.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you all for your help :)

I just bought a 64GB Flash Pen Drive from Fry's, and it seems to be working perfectly! I dont think I will ever have 10,000 songs though, so I figure that 64GB should be MORE than enough memory for me. PLUS, the drive is flash, so as many of you had said, it will not have any movable parts.
The only reason I bought the 320GB HDD was because I was able to spend less on it than other USB powered HDDs that were selling at the store. It was basically cheaper to buy the 320GB HDD than many of the 250GB HDDs... and 250GB was basically the smallest memory amount that was available. I spent much more on this flash drive though, but since it should last MANY years, I saw it as an OK deal. (I have much smaller flash drives that have lasted me almost 6 or so years now).

I looked at the SSDs, but they just seemed TOO expensive for such a small amount of memory, and you also have to buy an enclosure for them (I think). Also, I am not sure if I can properly connect it to my PC. At least with the flash drive, it will be easy to carry it between my car and PC, and also easy to connect it them both.
 

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I'm sure the manual says that only the first 2500 songs on the flash drive will be indexed, not 10,000.
When I have more time (hopefully later today) I'll check for a confirmation on this, unless someone beats me to it.
 

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That is correct. My Owners Manual states that only the 1st 2,500 songs are recognized on the Device (USB Drive).
 

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I think there could be a couple reasons why the difference in the number of songs supported.

- Probably updated in a later firmware for the radio devices. Earlier versions may have only supported 2,500 songs. A flash update of the radio from your dealer might fix this.
- Or, is there a difference between the NAV and Non-NAV versions? The Non-NAV use internal chip memory, which is much smaller than the HDD versions of the NAV radio. This might be a reason for the different song size handling ability? Do the posters that replied here stating 2,500 songs have the NAV or Non-NAV version?

Back to the original poster though, as others here have recommended I'd also stick to flash sticks for songs, and not a full HDD. The radio in cars are slow enough, and a full USB HDD would seem to only slow it down even more. Not to mention that in very cold or very hot weather, you will probably go outside the USB HDD's specifications for operating temperature, causing premature failure of the device. Your though on price is very valid, but the difference in performance and longevity in this use seems to make the difference worth the price.
 

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It was a link to an online PDF of the manual that I found in another thread on this forum.

http://www.elitecybersolutions.com/terrain/2010_gmc_terrain_owners.pdf

Same page, 6-29, same basic wording, but a different number.
I hope the 10,000 is correct and the link I have been using is outdated.
So far, I've only put about 400 songs on a flash drive for use in my vehicle just to try it out but the total number of songs I would like to be able to carry is about 3500ish.
 

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Wow, my rough calculations are that it would take about 1 solid week to listen to 2500 songs !
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Well, I just tried 3,039 songs, and the car's computer keeps saying that there is no supported USB device plugged in. This kinda sucks because I have a 64GB drive, but even when I put all my music on it, it cant be used. :(
Oh well. I guess Im gonna just return the drive and use my Walkman cell phone plugged in through the 3.5mm jack. I was doing this originally, but I didnt like having to control the music through the phone. BUUUUUT, I guess that is better than having to decide what songs I am willing to do without.

Thanks for all the help, everyone! :)
I appreciate it!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Drive was completely reformatted as FAT32, and I used my Sony Media GO program to load the drive up with music (it basically just copied everything over for me and kept track of what I put on the drive, instead of me having to do it manually. It would not affect the music in any way). The drive was read ok, and would play the first song ok, but after about 5 seconds, I would just give the “No supported data found. You can safely disconnect the device” error while indexing, and the radio would switch back over to FM.

I tested the drive before I returned it (also tested before using it) by keeping exactly 2500 songs, and the car read it fine. It literally goes bananas if I put 2501 or more songs on the USB drive. It has something to do with the indexing. If the computer reads past 2500 songs, it just doesnt seem to know what to do with them.

Anyways, I can still listen to my music in my car, but I just have to constantly plug in my phone and cannot control it through my steering wheel. Plus, I got my $160 back.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
bignickb85 said:
Has there been any updates on this or is 2500 still the case?
The only update I have is that I recently got a Sony Ericsson Vivaz cellphone and when plugged into the car, the car indexed it and allowed me to control the songs through the steering wheel buttons.
HOWEVER, I only got it to connect once, and since then, it would index and then switch to FM automatically. I then discovered that something on the memory card in the phone got corrupted, so I THINK that is what was causing that problem. I havent had a chance to try it after fixing the memory card (did it last night actually).

I also cannot say how many songs the Terrain picked up either, since it doesnt really give me a number of total songs. All I CAN say is that I had 2700+ songs and the car was picking up artists from A to Z, so I ASSUME it found all the music.
I had heard (and I think its in the manual too) that with some devices, such as the IPod/IPhone, more than 2500 songs can be detected. Other devices though, such as memory cards (just) and external harddrives, tend to have that limit of 2500 songs (without NAV System).

Either way, the 2500 song limit wont just magically go away. GMC would need to release some sort of update to the car's entertainment system's computer software. And if they did, I am not sure hw to even get that :p
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Alright, I have had time to play around with my Sony Ericsson Vivaz in my Terrain.
It is INDEED reading ALL 2700+ of my songs, and has been working awesomely (WOW! My spellchecker says that's an actual word!) for a few days now.

The only [teensy weensy] annoying part is that after plugging it into the car, the car must index. It's shorter than the first initial index though, lasting around the length of 1 song (3 to four minutes) instead of 8 minutes like it did the first time I plugged it in.
Nice thing too is that the car plays from the exact last song AND position that was played, and then moves onto another song; unlike the initial index where it would always start on the exact same song on your device until indexing finished.

So, based on my 'experimenting' with different device types, here is what I am thinking:
*If the music playing device is either a PFS (PlaysForSure) device or has some sort of operating system that the car must connect to in order to access the music:
It SHOULD play more than the 2500 song limit.
(My Vivaz is not officially a PFS device, but it DOS have an OS; so do IPhones, IPods, Zunes, etc)

*If the device does NOT have an operating system, then a 2500 song limit is enforced. These devices are USB Flash Drives, external HDDs, Flash Cards, etc.

If anyone reads this and disagrees, please contribute your input. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Strange Update:
I now have 2850 songs on my memory card. My Terrain was reading them all fine until a few days ago when it would go through its USB indexing phase and switch to FM after a while.
I cannot figure what the heck is going on! I reformatted the memory card and it is still doing it. Maybe it's my new USB cable?
 
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