Should we use FAT32 or NTFS format for USB, hard drive, storage devices?


Should we use FAT32 or NTFS format for USB, hard drive, or storage device? This is a question that most users still wonder during use and storage on the computer. This article will help you answer the questions above.


First, you need to know that each operating system has its own different storage formats. For example, MAC OS has HFS +, Linux has ext4, and Windows has FAT32 and NTFS. Due to this feature, users cannot use this data format on other operating systems, such as NTFS on MAC, HFS + on Windows, only Linux can read the other two data formats due to invention of this operating system.

Data format can be understood simply as how the operating system classifies and organizes data. For example, FAT32 only allows storage up to 32GB on one drive, while NTFS is 2TB, nearly 100 times. So should you use FAT32 or NTFS format for USB, hard drive, storage device? Please continue to explore the content below.

Introduction to NTFS and FAT32

FAT32 is the format used on older operating systems, from Windows 95 to Windows XP. Until Windows NT 4.0 SP5 version, Microsoft officially converted the default data format of the system into NTFS.

So for those who love the modern and innovative features, FAT32 is not the optimal choice.

Features of NTFS and FAT32

Next, we will talk about the important features of the two data formats NTFS and FAT32.

FAT32: This data format can be used for drives with capacities ranging from 33MB to 2TB. Meanwhile, the size of each partition must not be larger than 32GB, and the file size is 4GB. It also supports floppy disks – a type of data storage used in the past.

NTFS: NTFS is a significant improvement of Microsoft in formatting and storing data. Accordingly, the maximum storage capacity for a drive or an NTFS partition is 2TB. However, if you switch to dynamic disk format, you can increase the storage size to 16TB. The maximum capacity for a file is also 16TB, provided that the file size must be smaller than the capacity of the drive or partition containing it. Contrary to FAT32, NTFS no longer supports floppy disks (floppy disks).

Should we use FAT32 or NTFS format for USB, hard drive, storage devices?

For USB: You should use FAT32 because this is its default format. Even if you convert the file format to NTFS, it won’t do much. Unless you are copying a file larger than 4GB, or your USB is larger than 32GB, switch to NTFS.

For hard drives and storage devices: Unless you’re using an older version of Windows and shabby hardware, use FAT32. Otherwise switch to NTFS to enjoy the outstanding features that the article has stated. Because there are currently too many files larger than 4GB and computer partitions larger than 32GB. For example, the FIFA_2015_Ultimate.ISO game file that I am hosting has a capacity of nearly 10 GB, and each partition on my computer is larger than 100GB. So NTFS is still the first choice.

An example of copying files larger than 4GB in FAT32 format

  should use fat32 or ntfs

So Taimienphi.vn helped you answer the question should use FAT32 or NTFS format for USB, hard drive, storage device? If you are using FAT32, please convert to NTFS to enjoy the most useful features. Please refer to the article convert FAT32 to NTFS without using software that we have provided.

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