NTFS vs exFAT vs FAT32 – What’s the Difference and whichisbetter for you?
A file system uses commands to manage how data is stored and retrieved on a storage machine. And NTFS vsexFATvs FAT32, are 3 distinct file systems usually used in Windows. Each of the file systems has its pros and cons. If you recognize them well, you can prefer the correct file system for different needs.
If you don’t know the differences between NTFS, FAT32, and exFAT file systems, don’t worry; this article will tell you what you should know about the three kinds of file systems and provide you a brief illustration of NTFS vs FAT32 vs exFAT.
NTFS vs FAT32
NTFS File System
NTFS is tiny for New Technology File System, designed by Microsoft and introduced in 1993 with Windows NT 3.1. Windows 2000 and Windows NT are the primary operating systems utilizing the NTFS file system. NTFS is the most generally used file system in Windows, particularly for its system drive and most internal hard drives.
As the latest and excellent file system, NTFS has many features not available to FAT32 and exFAT. For complete information, you can visit official contents to learn its pros and cons, compatibility, and usage.
- It supports enormous files, and it nearly has no realistic partition size limit by changing cluster size
- Allows users to set file permissions and security as a file system with higher security
- Automatically alters the consistency of the file system by using its log file and checkpoint data
- Allows users to compress folders, files, or the whole drive when they are working out of disk space
- Uses a change journal to help restore information quickly if power failure or other system problems occur
- Allows users to set disk portions, limiting the number of space users can absorb.
- No realistic file-size or partition size limits
Cons: Not compatible with ancient operating systems
- Compatible with all versions of Windows
- Read-only with Mac OSX by default, and maybe read-only by default with some Linux distributions
- Only a few Linux versions can grant write support for NTFS
Usage: An NTFS file system is excellent for your Windows system drive and different internal drives or external hard disks with large capacities that will just be worked with Windows.
Free Convert FAT32 to NTFS without Data Loss
MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition is a cheap partition manager conferred by tens of millions of customers. As a specialist in partition management, this separation magic can help you reconfigure hard drive, format partition, switch MBR to GPT without data loss, monitor file system, move Windows to HD/SSD, copy disk, execute disk surface test, wipe disk, and so on.
Using this all-in-one partition handler to turn FAT32 to NTFS is very competent. Users can switch FAT to NTFS without inducing any data loss.
Note: If you want to convert NTFS to FAT32 without data loss, you need to get MiniTool Partition Wizard Pro Edition, which has more advanced disk and partition management features.
Now, follow the steps below to convert FAT32 to the NTFS file system for free.
- Get MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition by visiting their site. Install it on your PC and start it to get the main interface.
- Choose the FAT32 partition you want to convert and convert FAT to NTFS from the left action panel.
- Hit the Start button to run the FAT to NTFS conversion.
- After the transformation is finished, you can hit Close to exit the window.
By grasping the steps above, you can switch FAT32 to NTFS without any data loss.
exFAT File System
exFAT is the outline of the Extended File Allocation Table. Microsoft launched a file system in 2006, similar to the FAT32 files system but did not have the limits of a FAT32 file system.
Designed to replace FAT32, exFAT is optimized for flash memory such as USB flash drives and SD cards, though some significantly older ones may only support FAT32.
- More broadly compatible than NTFS, but not really match FAT32’s compatibility
- Permits users to save files much larger than the 4 GB provided by FAT32
- No realistic file-size or partition-size limits
- Not as compatible as FAT32
- Lacks journaling functionality and other excellent features developed into the NTFS file system
- Works with all variants of Windows and latest versions of Mac OS X
- Fit to Linux, but additional software will be required.
Usage: You can use the exFAT file system to build large partitions and store files larger than 4GB and when you need more compatibility than what NTFS offers. And for exchanging or sharing large files, particularly between OSes, exFAT is a great choice.
NTFS vs exFAT
NTFS is excellent for internal disks, while exFAT is usually ideal for flash drives. Both of them have no practical file size or partition size boundaries. If storage gadgets are not fit with the NTFS file system and you don’t require to be limited by FAT32, you can choose the exFAT file system.
FAT32 vs exFAT
Both of them are fit for removable devices due to their compatibility. FAT32 is fitting with more antiquated operating systems. Though, FAT32 has boundaries on single file size and partition size, while exFAT does not. Compared with FAT32, exFAT is an optimized FAT32 file system that can be broadly used for movable devices of large capacity.
After analyzing NTFS vs FAT32 vs exFAT, you can prefer a suitable file system for your drive according to your requirements.
Free Erase Your Drive to FAT32, NTFS, or exFAT
If you want to switch a partition’s file system to exFAT, you need to format the partition differently from FAT and NTFS conversion. Here you can use MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition to erase your storage device to NTFS, FAT32, or exFAT file system in one run. Let’s look at the detailed steps together.
- Get MiniTool Partition Wizard Free Edition by visiting the internet. Install and start it to get its main interface.
- Right-click the drive you require to format and choose Format Partition.
- At this screen, you are permitted to define partition label, file system, and cluster size. You can erase the drive’s file system to NTFS, FAT32, Ext2, exFAT, Ext3, serving all your needs. After resetting these parameters, you can click OK.
- Click Apply on the upper-right edge to support the pending operation.