Thursday, November 5, 2015

Different file systems explained; FAT32, NTFS, HFS+, exFAT

The different types of file systems available might confuse lot of people. Some are specific to certain operating system like NTFS for windows. Here is the sneak peak of all the major file systems.
FAT32 (File Allocation Table)
    Read/Write FAT32 from both native Windows and native Mac OS X.
    Maximum file size: 4GB.
    Maximum volume size: 2TB

NTFS (Windows NT File System)
    Read/Write NTFS from native Windows.
    Read only NTFS from native Mac OS X
    [*]To Read/Write/Format NTFS from Mac OS X: Install NTFS-3G for Mac OS X (free)
    Some have reported problems using Tuxera (approx 33USD).
    Native NTFS support can be enabled in Snow Leopard, but is not advisable, due to instability.
    AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support NTFS
    Maximum file size: 16 TB
    Maximum volume size: 256TB

HFS+ (Hierarchical File System, a.k.a. Mac OS Extended)
    Read/Write HFS+ from native Mac OS X
    Required for Time Machine or Carbon Copy Cloner backups of Mac internal hard drive.
    To Read/Write HFS+ from Windows, Install MacDrive
    To Read HFS+ (but not Write) from Windows, Install HFSExplorer
    Maximum file size: 8EiB
    Maximum volume size: 8EiB

exFAT (FAT64)
    Supported in Mac OS X only in 10.6.5 or later.
    Not all Windows versions support exFAT.
    AirPort Extreme (802.11n) and Time Capsule do not support exFAT
    Maximum file size: 16 EiB
Maximum volume size: 64 ZiB

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