Some of the features you can use when you choose NTFS are:

Domains, which are part of Active Directory, and which you can use to fine-tune security options while keeping administration simple. Domain controllers require NTFS.

File encryption, which greatly enhances security.

Permissions that can be set on individual files and on folders.

Sparse files. These are very large files created by applications in such a way that only limited disk space is needed. That is, NTFS allocates disk space only to the portions of a file that are written to.

Remote Storage, which provides an extension to your disk space by making removable media (such as tapes) more accessible.

Recovery logging of NTFS meta data, which helps you restore information quickly in the event of power failure or other system problem. This allows access to the volume immediately after restarting the computer without waiting for chkdsk.exe to run.

Disk quotas, which you can use to monitor and control the amount of disk space used by individual users.

Better scalability to large drives. The maximum drive size for NTFS is much greater than that for FAT, and as drive size increases, performance with NTFS doesn't degrade as it does with FAT.

The Setup program makes it easy to convert your partition to the new version of NTFS, even if it used FAT or FAT32 before. This kind of conversion keeps your files intact (unlike formatting a partition).

Setup begins by checking the existing file system. If it is NTFS, conversion is not necessary. If it is FAT or FAT32, Setup gives you the choice of converting to NTFS. If you don't need to keep your files intact and you have a FAT or FAT32 partition, it is recommended that you format the partition with NTFS rather than converting from FAT or FAT32. Formatting a partition erases all data on the partition and allows you to start fresh with a clean drive.

However, it is still advantageous to use NTFS, regardless of whether the partition was formatted with NTFS or converted. A partition can also be converted after Setup by using Convert.exe. For more information about Convert.exe, after completing Setup, click Start, click Run, type cmd, and then press ENTER. In the command window, type help convert, and then press ENTER.

Choosing between NTFS, FAT, and FAT32

Convert a volume to NTFS from the command prompt

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