Tip

Convert from FAT to NTFS

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When using Windows 2000 or XP, you do not have to wipe out a FAT partition to convert it to NTFS. They both include a program called convert in the windowssystem32 directory.

C:WINDOWSsystem32>convert /?
Converts FAT volumes to NTFS.

CONVERT volume /FS:NTFS [/V] [/CvtArea:filename] [/NoSecurity] [/X]

  volume      Specifies the drive letter (followed by a colon),
              mount point, or volume name.
  /FS:NTFS    Specifies that the volume is to be converted to NTFS.
  /V          Specifies that Convert should be run in verbose mode.
  /CvtArea:filename
              Specifies a contiguous file in the root directory to be
              the place holder for NTFS system files.
  /NoSecurity Specifies the converted files and directories security
              settings to be accessible by everyone.
  /X          Forces the volume to dismount first if necessary.
              All opened handles to the volume would then be invalid.

By doing a "c:windowssystem32convert c: //fs:ntfs", the system will convert c: to a NTFS on the next reboot. The option to do this also shows up when you upgrade Windows 2000 or XP.

This was first published in February 2003

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