Converting file systems



Can some 1 help me recently iwas playing around with tips and tricks from a xp magazine.
Now somehow I converted my Hardive from a fat32 to a ntfs file system.
My burner origonally was on the ntfs system and now is on Fat32.

I would like to know if any 1 can tell me how to convert tehse back to their origonal format.

Hardrive from ntfs to fat32
burner from fat32 to ntfs :confused:


optical drives do not have an inherent files system so there’s no way your burner is either FAT32 nor NTFS…

with regard to HDDs, the only advantage of keeping an HDD FAT32 is backwards compatibility with an older OS like Win95/98…


c drive is ntfs hardrive
d drive is fat32 well i thought this would be the burner


nope…not the burner…


I’m sure that NTFS to FAT32 is a no no. Once it’s NTFS then there’s no way back other than reformatting the drive & re-installing, but as has been pointed out there’s no real advantage in having a fat32 file system.


I’m sure i’m right in saying even when reformating, XP itself will not give you the option of going back to FAT32,you might have to re partition the HHD as well. NTFS is also much more stable that FAT32, as for backward compatability theres always the Programe compatability wizard.


Perhaps partition magic can do that.


Partition Magic can do that, but it’s not something that I would recommend.

Windows will let you format any drive up to 32 GB using FAT32, and the file system itself is actually capable of going a lot bigger than that. Microsoft intentionally limited their formatting utilities to that size because FAT32 requires a pretty large cluster size for large partitions, meaning a lot of space can be wasted in file system overhead.

The only advantage that FAT32 has over NTFS is speed. FAT32 is noticeably quicker that NTFS but it does not have the security features and access control that NTFS affords.

Even if you don’t use all its bells & whistles, there’s a whole laundry list of improvements over FAT & FAT32 that make NTFS worth using: NTFS permissions, journaling, redundant master file tables, sparse files, smaller cluster size, file-level encryption and compression, software striping and spanning, mount points, etc.


Some Info for you copy & pasted regarding Fat32 and NTFS

Can I convert between NTFS and FAT? How do I remove NTFS?

Win2k/XP comes with the “convert” command-line utility to go from FAT32 to NTFS; this conversion tends to give the volume greater fragmentation of system areas and non-optimal cluster sizes (original size maintained).

Windows doesn’t provide for conversion from NTFS to FAT; PartitionMagic from PowerQuest will do it.

Removing NTFS partitions by formatting is explained in this Microsoft KB article Q314052

What are the advantages of FAT over NTFS?

Performs faster on volumes ~10GB and less.

Works well with small disk cache and system cache (less than 96MB systems).

What are the disadvantages of FAT?

Gets slower as the number of files on a partition increases.

Slows as volume size increases, because drive must constantly reference the file allocation table at the beginning of the volume.

Tends to highly fragment files.

What are the advantages of NTFS over FAT?

Is the native file system for WinNT/2k/XP.

Allows indexing which improves file searching (mostly, faster); causes slight performance hit (can turn off).

Has better security – such as file-wise encryption (not supported by WinXP home) and per-user access rules (you can stop your wife from seeing the porn folder!)

Supports user quotas (prevent the tykes from downloading too many mp3s)

Has file-wise compression.

Is journaled, decreasing data loss (ScanDisk at start up unnecessary).

Uses Unicode (allows foreign and extended character) file names and natively supports long file names.

Supports larger files than FAT (greater than 4GB).

Allows larger volume sizes (greater than 1TB) There is talk about a theoretical limit of 16 Exabytes, and up to 2 Terabytes.

Supported format on dynamic disks (no dynamic disks on WinXP Home).

Works well with large cache (greater than 96MB systems).

Performs better on volumes ~20GB and more.

Is more space-efficient on large volumes (greater than 8GB).

Resistant to fragmentation.

What are the disadvantages of NTFS?

Suffers with small cache (less than 96MB systems).

Suffers with slow disks and controllers.

Is less space-efficient on small volumes (less than 4GB).

Should I use FAT or NTFS? Which is faster?

Some people report FAT is faster than NTFS; others report that NTFS is faster than FAT. Compare your system specs and needs with the advantages and disadvantages of each file system.

Comfort level is important – if you are apprehensive about using NTFS, then do not put your important files on it! You can always convert from FAT to NTFS later. Try NTFS on a spare partition first, if possible.


I used to use FAT32 but tried NTFS and it worked briliantlly, if you tend to install and uninstall a lot of programmes it is much more stable.


Originally Posted by biikman
Perhaps partition magic can do that.

Partition Magic can do that, but it’s not something that I would recommend.

Oh so true, it´s not fun when you get an error in the middle of the process and then your partition is f****d. :frowning:



I can add to what biikman had to say. Partition Magic is more than capable of converting from FAT32 to NTSF and back again to FAT32 without losing any of your data. I know this for a fact. I have used Partition Magic in the past to do exactly that and without any problems.

As far as drive letters, your D drive is either a second partition on your main C drive or a second drive altogether.

One last thing. Why in the world would you want to go back to a file system (FAT32) that waste’s such a large part of your hard drives. With FAT32 you are limited to the size of drive that can be seen by Windows XP and again it wastes so much of your drive space.