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Convert file system

  • Speaking of file system, user may spontaneously think of FAT and NTFS, two popular mainstream file system adopted by computer. As the newest file system, NTFS has more superior performance than FAT with larger supported partition volume, file compression and most eminently EFS. Therefore, many users would like to convert their FAT file system to NTFS so as to better manage partition. Now, user needs a third-party partition manager to realize this operation and I would like to recommend user MiniTool Partition Wizard - a powerful yet efficient partition manager.

    The initial version of FAT is now referred to as FAT12. Designed as a file system for floppy disks, it limited cluster addresses to 12-bit values, which not only limited the cluster count to 4078, but made FAT manipulation tricky with the PC's 8-bit and 16-bit registers. The disk's size is stored as a 16-bit count of sectors, which limited the size to 32 MB. FAT12 was used by several manufacturers with different physical formats, but a typical floppy disk at the time was 5.25-inch, single-sided, 40 tracks, with 8 sectors per track, resulting in a capacity of 160 KB for both the system areas and files. The FAT12 limitations exceeded this capacity by a factor of ten or more.
    In 1984, IBM released the PC AT, which featured a 20 MB hard disk. Microsoft introduced MS-DOS 3.0 in parallel. Cluster addresses were increased to 16-bit, allowing for up to 65,517 clusters per volume, and consequently much greater file system sizes, at least in theory. However, the maximum possible number of sectors and the maximum size of 32 MB did not change. Therefore, although technically already "FAT16", this format was not what today is commonly understood as FAT16. In order to overcome size limit of FAT16, while at the same time allowing DOS real mode code to handle the format, and without reducing available conventional memory unnecessarily, Microsoft implemented a next generation, known as FAT32. Cluster values are represented by 32-bit numbers, of which 28 bits are used to hold the cluster number, for a maximum of approximately 268 million clusters. This allows for drive sizes of up to 8 TiB with 32 KB clusters, but the boot sector uses a 32-bit field for the sector count, limiting volume size to 2 TB on a hard disk with 512 byte sectors.

    Convert file system with MiniTool Partition Wizard
    User could download MiniTool Partition Wizard at MiniTool Partition Wizard Download Center.
    User would come to following interface after running MiniTool Partition Wizard.

    Select and right click desired partition, then click "Convert FAT to NTFS".

    Click start to convert and click "Close" when information of successfully converting file system emerges.

    Now, the file system of this partition is successfully converted to NTFS.