Microsoft Versus
Dissecting Microsoft | Directory

Microsoft Windows & Linux Supported File Systems

A file system defines how an operating system stores and accesses files and directories typically stored on disk. This can be accomplished in a variety of ways. Often one method is more applicable to a situation than another.

Since the release of Microsoft® Windows™ NT 3.1 on July 27, 1993, Windows has supported two types of file systems, FAT and NTFS, both created by Microsoft. Unix, in all its flavors, has a tradition of supporting as many file systems as possible. This gives the system administrator the flexibility to choose the best available file system for the task at hand.

Support from Microsoft for corrupt file systems is very limited. Their software tools for recovery are mostly old and lacking in fine-grained control. Being proprietary, there are a limited set of Windows-based tools available for Windows file systems from other sources. Unix-based recovery tools are available which provide administrators with as many abilities as possible. There are many times when Unix-based software must be used to recover corrupt Windows drives.

Microsoft Windows NT/2000/XP

Microsoft Windows supports two proprietary file systems and will only boot from local disks.

GNU/Linux 2.4

Linux, and some other modern versions of Unix, support more than 20 file systems and can operate with or without local disks.

Copyright © 2004-2007 Matthew Schwartz