Originally posted by Enigmatic
Windows 9.X uses the FAT [ File Allocation Table ] format to store files and there locations on the HDD.
~Only allows up to 11 characters [ including the extension ] per file name
~Can only handle disk partitions of up to 2Gb [ a 10Gb HDD would have to be partitioned into five sets of 2Gb ]
Windows 2K and later use the NTFS [ New Technology File System ] to do the job of the old FAT format.
~Allows file names of yp to 255 characters
~Allows for disk partitions of up to 2024Gb [ or something stupid like that ]
FAT/FAT32 & NTFS are not compatible, if you are using a Windows installation disk to upgrade from a 9.X O/S to a newer NT O/S, you will be prompted to convert your current FAT HDD to NTFS so that you can view older files.
If you are simply formatting the drive, you normally get the option to choose FAT or NTFS. For obvious reasons most people choose NTFS.
Windows 9.x use Fat32 not Fat. Fat32 removed those restrictions.
You can install XP on Fat32 or NTFS and you can have any combination of Fat32 and NTFS partitions.
Fat32 is still popular as a shared partition on Windows/Linux multiboot PC's.