tinyapps.org / blog


Formatting partitions over 32GB as FAT32 in Windows XP #

Searching for a quick way to format a partition over 32GB as FAT32 in Windows XP, I tried this solution recommended in a number of places:
C:\>format drive_letter /fs:fat32
Here's what I got:
The type of the file system is RAW.
The new file system is FAT32.

WARNING, ALL DATA ON NON-REMOVABLE DISK
DRIVE D: WILL BE LOST!
Proceed with Format (Y/N)? y
Verifying 40960M
Eons pass, stars are born and burn out, entire universes spring into existence, spiral outward, and return to the formless void... and then, finally:
The volume is too big for FAT32.
Older and wiser, I decided to give the tiny, open source fat32format a go:
C:\>fat32format d:
Warning ALL data on drive 'd' will be lost irretrievably, are you sure (y/n) :y
Approximately one second later, the format was complete. Incredulous, I chkdsk'd the drive - it was formatted perfectly. fat32format's documentation seems to bear this out ("It should take about 4 seconds per Terabyte to format the disk." - wow!). May this lesson save humanity from many wasted hours.

/windows | Aug 17, 2009


Subscribe or visit the archives