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Thread: What is FAT32X?

  1. #1
    Ultimate Member muchmark's Avatar
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    What is FAT32X?

    I was trying to partition a IBM 20GB preload machine using PQ PartitionMagic and the drive Fat was identified as a FAT32X, couldn't partition the drive. The partition was created from the IBM restore CD. Any ideas how to partation this drive?

  2. #2
    Xtreme Member NDC's Avatar
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    Tech Tip:
    What is a FAT32x partition?
    by David Steinberg, PowerQuest Technical Support

    FAT32x is a proprietary file system developed by Microsoft to enable FAT32 partitions to exist beyond 1024 cylinders. Windows 95 versions 'B' (OSR2) and later and Windows 98 are the only operating systems currently using FAT32x partitions. The movement to drives that have more than 1024 translated cylinders (i.e. 8Gb and larger) has been the catalyst for this development.

    Working in FAT32x partitions is essentially the same as working in FAT32 partitions. However, when attempting to manipulate a FAT32x partition, problems may occur. Procedures such as copying, imaging, resizing, and moving FAT32x partitions require different methods than those used for FAT32 partitions.

    Many new computers have pre-installed FAT32x partitions. This has created numerous problems for individuals wishing to modify their partitions on their new systems. FAT32x partitions have a different file system flag in the partition table. Sometimes a FAT32x partition is erroneously created entirely within 1024 cylinders. This can be corrected, in some cases, by using a disk editing utility.








    Can anyone explain FAT32X?

  3. #3
    Ultimate Member muchmark's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tip NDC.

    I was told Partition Magic 6 now support FAT32x.

    Mark

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    I'd be interested if anybody can answer my question.

    I understood LBA (logical block addressing) was the solution for large drives over 8GB? What's the point of FAT32x if LBA solves the problem?

    I've got a 10GB Western Digital using LBA and a FAT32 partition.

  5. #5
    Ultimate Member muchmark's Avatar
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    Someone can correct me if I am wrong, logical block addressing setup in the BIOS is use so DOS can see drives over 540 MB.

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    I think muchmark's comment about DOS may have answered my question. It led me to re-read NDX's post and notice the link at the end. Checking the link, I read the article above the one it refers to.

    The page is from 1998, when many computer BIOSs still didn't have Logical Block Addressing built in. Not a problem with the 8GB limit if you were running later Win95 and Win98 operating systems at the time. However, if your computer had programs or functions that were written for DOS or Windows 3.1, not uncommon back then, they couldn't recognize a drive over 8GB.

    I suspect muchmark's IBM restore CD uses DOS and/or Windows3.1 based programs and requires FAT32x because the BIOS in the computer does not support LBA.

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