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Old 10-30-2008, 10:04 AM   #1
theAdmiral
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Suitability of exFAT


I have a desktop machine that I want to dual boot Linux and Windows Vista on. I also have a 250GB external drive that I pretty much leave connected to that machine for backups and music. I would like to know my options for setting up a file system, be they NTFS/FAT32, NTFS/FAT32/<other Linux FS>, or if I should integrate the new exFAT into this somehow, how should I do it. Could I simple just set up an exFAT FS for this entire drive and use it between my Linux partition and my Windows partition on my box?

Edit: My question is for the combination options for my external drive.

Thanks,
theAdmiral

Last edited by theAdmiral; 10-30-2008 at 10:07 AM. Reason: Original was too vague.
 
Old 10-30-2008, 11:23 AM   #2
amani
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exFAT, fat32 and ntfs are proprietary closed source file systems. Avoid them. Many Linux distros do not support exFAT by default.
 
Old 10-30-2008, 11:36 AM   #3
theAdmiral
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Thank you.

Thank you.
 
Old 10-30-2008, 02:55 PM   #4
i92guboj
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Fat is not too good against power failures, it's not solid, and has some other problems about file sizes (might not be an issue) and performance.

NTFS can work, it works ok under linux with the ntfs-3g driver.

My choice however would be ext3. You can use ext3 partitions under windows with some special drivers/tools:

http://www.fs-driver.org/
http://www.chrysocome.net/explore2fs
http://www.diskinternals.com/linux-reader/
 
Old 10-31-2008, 09:07 AM   #5
theAdmiral
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Thank you

i92guboj,

Are you sure the diskinternals-linux-reader runs under Windows?

Thanks,

theAdmiral

Last edited by theAdmiral; 10-31-2008 at 01:56 PM. Reason: Possible error
 
Old 10-31-2008, 07:27 PM   #6
theAdmiral
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unhelpful

i92guboj,

Your advice was essentially unhelpful. I know I shouldn't rant, but if you can't offer good suggestions, keep your peace. (Common courtesy).

theAdmiral
 
Old 10-31-2008, 07:55 PM   #7
David the H.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theAdmiral View Post
i92guboj,

Your advice was essentially unhelpful. I know I shouldn't rant, but if you can't offer good suggestions, keep your peace. (Common courtesy).

theAdmiral
Wait a minute here. Just what was wrong with his advice? What he said clearly answered your request. FAT isn't a very good choice, NTFS can work, but EXT3 is his recommendation, as long as you have some way to access it from Windows.

In truth, you're going to have some difficulty no matter what you choose, simply because Microsoft doesn't like to play well with others. They keep their own file systems proprietary and likewise refuse to support anyone else's file systems. So everything has to be reverse-engineered and provided by third-parties.

So if you don't want to use third-party ext2/3 drivers in Windows, use NTFS with the Linux ntfs-3g driver. There aren't that many other options available. I hadn't even heard of exFAT before your post, so I'm not even sure there even is any support for it yet for Linux.
 
Old 10-31-2008, 11:18 PM   #8
theAdmiral
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David the H. View Post
Wait a minute here. Just what was wrong with his advice?
The Chrysocome site does not list support for Vista. If I am not mistaken, the last update for the website was right around Vista's release, if not a little later. The diskinternals-linux-reader site states that the prog runs on Linux. I am confused by what tool should be used to set up the drive, and what OS to run it on. All I have right now is Win Vista. I am waiting for Kubuntu 8.10 to come out in a few days. Maybe I will just wait until then to set everything up. At this point, the question that I need to ask is if a dual boot desktop will cleanly utilize a 250GB external drive with Ext3FS. I do not plan on using Win Vista side that much on this machine. My primary OS will be Linux.

Thank you.

Quote:
What he said clearly answered your request. FAT isn't a very good choice, NTFS can work, but EXT3 is his recommendation, as long as you have some way to access it from Windows.

In truth, you're going to have some difficulty no matter what you choose, simply because Microsoft doesn't like to play well with others. They keep their own file systems proprietary and likewise refuse to support anyone else's file systems. So everything has to be reverse-engineered and provided by third-parties.

So if you don't want to use third-party ext2/3 drivers in Windows, use NTFS with the Linux ntfs-3g driver. There aren't that many other options available. I hadn't even heard of exFAT before your post, so I'm not even sure there even is any support for it yet for Linux.

Last edited by theAdmiral; 10-31-2008 at 11:27 PM. Reason: Some changes.
 
Old 10-31-2008, 11:38 PM   #9
i92guboj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theAdmiral View Post
i92guboj,

Your advice was essentially unhelpful. I know I shouldn't rant, but if you can't offer good suggestions, keep your peace. (Common courtesy).

theAdmiral
Mmm. I am sorry you see it that way. But, would you mind explaining how my post didn't answer your question?

You explicitly stated this in your first post:

Quote:
I would like to know my options for setting up a file system, be they NTFS/FAT32, NTFS/FAT32/<other Linux FS>
In case you didn't know, ext2 and ext3 fit into your "other Linux FS" clause. So, again, in which way is my post unhelpful? You asked for a solution, I provided one: format as ext3, and use it under Windows with one of the tools I provided you. What's the problem?

If you didn't understand my point, please, ask politely. I can only think that you didn't even bother to try.

Last edited by i92guboj; 10-31-2008 at 11:38 PM. Reason: fixed quote tags
 
Old 10-31-2008, 11:44 PM   #10
i92guboj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theAdmiral View Post
The Chrysocome site does not list support for Vista. If I am not mistaken, the last update for the website was right around Vista's release, if not a little later.
To tell the truth, I haven't tried. But that vista is not listed doesn't necessarily mean that it doesn't work.

Quote:
The diskinternals-linux-reader site states that the prog runs on Linux.
Erm..... This is the first paragraph on the web site I linked:


Quote:
How to get safe and quick access to alternative file systems? DiskInternals Linux Reader is a new easy way to do this. This program plays the role of a bridge between your Windows and Ext2/Ext3 Linux file systems. This easy-to-use tool runs under Windows and allows you to browse Ext2/Ext3 Linux file systems and extract files from there.
.....

And just next to it, on the column in the right, we can read:

Quote:
An Intel-compatible platform running Windows 9x/ME/NT4.0/2000/XP/2003/Vista.
Really. I hope that you are not always that grateful when people give you useful advices.

You don't say anything about the first link, and it also says:

Quote:
It provides Windows NT4.0/2000/XP/2003/Vista/2008 with full access to Linux Ext2 volumes (read access and write access). This may be useful if you have installed both Windows and Linux as a dual boot environment on your computer.
First paragraph again. That's why I think -rightfully- that you haven't bothered at all to read a single line.

No hard feelings. I just hope that this makes my input a bit more helpful.

Cheers.

Last edited by i92guboj; 10-31-2008 at 11:46 PM.
 
Old 11-01-2008, 10:43 AM   #11
theAdmiral
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i92guboj View Post
Mmm. I am sorry you see it that way. But, would you mind explaining how my post didn't answer your question?

You explicitly stated this in your first post:



In case you didn't know, ext2 and ext3 fit into your "other Linux FS" clause. So, again, in which way is my post unhelpful? You asked for a solution, I provided one: format as ext3, and use it under Windows with one of the tools I provided you. What's the problem?

If you didn't understand my point, please, ask politely. I can only think that you didn't even bother to try.
Sorry about not being that clear, because I did bother to try. I spent the better part of two hours trying to find out how your solution applied to me. Again, I am only running Vista right now. I just want to get a head start on the preparation for Linux, as well as restore my external hard drives fulfilled purpose for being my music repository. I suppose I should try this again. I am only running Vista right now. I want to:
  • Partition my HD to fit both Vista as is (NTFS), and to fit Linux on an Ext3 volume
  • My external drive is not partitioned. Per your advice as using Ext3, I want to partition my external drive to use Ext3, provided that I will be able to reach into and use it from the Windows Vista side and the Kubuntu Linux side.

Will that work? Unless it is an easy sweep of the mouse, don't worry about sending me any links. I think I will just wait until install time for this.

Thanks,
theAdmiral
 
Old 07-30-2009, 10:46 AM   #12
brinstar
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sorry to revive this old thread but my question is related

i would like to know whether there are any filesystems made specifically for flash storage in the same way exfat is for flash? i.e. wear-leveling etc.

if there aren't any that are specially for flash, what are the most relevant choices?

i am seriously thinking of using exfat to maximize the life of my flash drives. a read-only driver has appeared which should make things easier. i know this would probably cause problems when i need to move (i.e. write) stuff from windows to linux and vice versa, but i would probably keep a spare FAT32 drive just for linux in this case.
 
Old 10-13-2009, 12:18 PM   #13
James_pic
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brinstar View Post
sorry to revive this old thread but my question is related

i would like to know whether there are any filesystems made specifically for flash storage in the same way exfat is for flash? i.e. wear-leveling etc.

if there aren't any that are specially for flash, what are the most relevant choices?

i am seriously thinking of using exfat to maximize the life of my flash drives. a read-only driver has appeared which should make things easier. i know this would probably cause problems when i need to move (i.e. write) stuff from windows to linux and vice versa, but i would probably keep a spare FAT32 drive just for linux in this case.
It's a little complicated, but bear with me.

AFAIK, exFAT doesn't implement any intentional wear leveling. It doesn't use journaling (which can unintentionally wear down flash drives), but so far as I know, it wears down flash drives in much the same way as FAT32 (it's sometimes even called FAT64, to reference the similarities).

Now, there are file systems that are specifically designed to run on flash drives (JFFS and JFFS2, UBIFS and YAFFS are examples). However, they're very different to the likes of exFAT, ext2, and NTFS; they're not designed to talk to block devices (like hard drives or USB sticks), they're designed to talk to bare Flash memory chips.

And this is an important point. USB Flash drives are not bare Flash memory chips. All good modern USB Flash drives have electronics between the computer and the chips. This electronics shows the computer an ordinary hard drive, whilst arranging (and re-arranging) the data on the flash memory chips so as to minimise wear, and maximise their usable life.

The upshot of this, is that unless you have access the the bare Flash memory chips (I suspect that unless you, or someone who works for you, soldered them onto the motherboard yourself, you probably don't), you can't use these flash file systems.

And nor would you need to; USB memory stick designers assume users will use FAT32 (or equivalent) on their memory sticks, and design around this. Using an exotic file system on modern flash memory won't significantly improve their working life, compared to FAT32 (or equivalent - ext2 will perform similarly).

My apologies for any technical inaccuracies. I'm not an expert on everything I've covered here.

James
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 10-13-2009, 01:15 PM   #14
smeezekitty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by James_pic View Post
It's a little complicated, but bear with me.

AFAIK, exFAT doesn't implement any intentional wear leveling. It doesn't use journaling (which can unintentionally wear down flash drives), but so far as I know, it wears down flash drives in much the same way as FAT32 (it's sometimes even called FAT64, to reference the similarities).

Now, there are file systems that are specifically designed to run on flash drives (JFFS and JFFS2, UBIFS and YAFFS are examples). However, they're very different to the likes of exFAT, ext2, and NTFS; they're not designed to talk to block devices (like hard drives or USB sticks), they're designed to talk to bare Flash memory chips.

And this is an important point. USB Flash drives are not bare Flash memory chips. All good modern USB Flash drives have electronics between the computer and the chips. This electronics shows the computer an ordinary hard drive, whilst arranging (and re-arranging) the data on the flash memory chips so as to minimise wear, and maximise their usable life.

The upshot of this, is that unless you have access the the bare Flash memory chips (I suspect that unless you, or someone who works for you, soldered them onto the motherboard yourself, you probably don't), you can't use these flash file systems.

And nor would you need to; USB memory stick designers assume users will use FAT32 (or equivalent) on their memory sticks, and design around this. Using an exotic file system on modern flash memory won't significantly improve their working life, compared to FAT32 (or equivalent - ext2 will perform similarly).

My apologies for any technical inaccuracies. I'm not an expert on everything I've covered here.

James
wear leveling is done in the flash drive by the eletronics, the filesystem is not involved.
 
Old 03-06-2012, 04:58 AM   #15
bvg_1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smeezekitty View Post
wear leveling is done in the flash drive by the eletronics, the filesystem is not involved.
No, Wear levelling is done by the flash translation layer.
If you are using Raw nand flash devices, wear levelling is to be done by the SW.
However, if you use EMMC kind, then wear levelling is done by the HW itself.
 
  


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