Hi Fred, This is the first time I have written, I thank you for the excellent publication of the Langa List. I have been a subscriber for a few years and a Plus Subscriber for the last two years, talk about bang for your buck. Well my Question seems like a simple one but I am told it is complicated…
I purchased a [PC and will install] Windows XP Home Edition. Well here is the question. Which file system is best to install, NTFS or FAT32? From what I’ve read there is no one simple answer. Thank You David E Jusseaume
NTFS is a little slower, but offers more features— it’s much harder to scramble a file, for example, and also offers additional features like built-in file compression, encryption, and the ability to handle even gargantuan hard drives.
In some cases, a hybrid setup is good: For example, I put XP itself in an NTFS partition, but leave the rest of the hard drive FAT32 for easy DOS access. I also place the XP swap file/paging file in a FAT32 partition to gain a little extra speed. And I keep a DOS-based NTFS file reader available just in case something bad happens to the NTFS partition (it normally can’t be seen or accessed from DOS.)
Generally, NTFS wins in all categories except raw speed; everything else being equal, I’d go with NTFS, at least for the OS’s own partition.