There are two main file systems used with Windows NT: FAT and NTFS. The Fat system was introduced with MS-DOS in 1981. This file system is used in almost all computer operating systems. The Fat file system keeps track of files in a partition using a file allocation table, hence the FAT acronym, stored on the first few clusters of the partition. Each partition on the disk has an entry in the FAT that indicates whether the cluster is in use. In the FAT file system, a directory is a list of file entries consisting of a filename limited to 8 characters, a period, and a three-letter extension. File entries also contain a date and time stamp. FAT file system supports files and partitions as large as 4GB. FAT is the only PC-compatible file system that is used on floppy disks.
The New Technology File System (NTFS) is the preferred file system for use with Windows NT, was created for Windows NT, and represents the culmination of file system development of Microsoft.
NTFS is only supported by Windows NT. If you need to share files with another operating system on the same computer, you will need to choose a file system that is compatible with both operating systems. There are several characteristics that make NTFS the file system of choice for Windows NT: Fault tolerance, security, file and partition size, file compression, POSIX support, Performance, Macintosh file support.
NTFS can store files up to 16 exabyte in length. The recommended minimum partition size is 50MB. NTFS supports security on files and directories, but does not support data encryption. NTFS has fault tolerance which logs all changes to the file system. After NTFS writes to the hard disk, it rereads the newly written data to verify its integrity. If the...