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Suitable file format for external drives

By bladepact ·
I purchased a 2.5 40GB external drive connected through USB, I want to know what is the best file format for external drives that will be suitable also for different windows versions?

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by BFilmFan In reply to Suitable file format for ...

FAT32 if you have Windows 98 and above clients.

NTFS if your clients are Windows 2000 and above.

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by Gyrfalcon2138 In reply to Suitable file format for ...

If you're going to install Windows 98, you'll need to use FAT32. If it's going to be Windows 2000+, I'd just go ahead and use NTFS. If you're going more legacy than Win 98, you'll need to use FAT 16 - that will cover DOS and every version of windows.

NTFS is, as far as I know, the most efficient file system for a large hard drive - it's quite fast and uses its space very effectively. FAT32 is okay, but starts to have problems at that size. I also believe that FAT 32 is limited to a 32 GB hard drive size in Win98 so you'd have to partition.

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by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Suitable file format for ...

One of my customers uses something similar over (X and latter versions of Windows and they have a 40 GIG that I've formated to FAT32 and it seems to be working quite OK.

Other than needing to load USB drivers to the 98 computers I haven't heard of any problems although FAT32 isn't the most efficient way to use a HDD in your case it is most likely the only possibility.

If you need Windows 3X DOS compatibility you'll need to go with a FAT16 Format but I don't thing that it will be capable of using the entire HDD space and I'm not sure that XP or 2003 is capable of reading that format either.

Col

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by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to

Oops that should have read 9X.

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by bladepact In reply to Suitable file format for ...

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