[SOLVED] Better choice: exfat or f2fs

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[SOLVED] Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby makh » 2018-09-09 16:32

Hi

What will be a better choice to use for a usb pen drive?

I was seeing that even gparted doesnt fully support exfat! :?

Sometimes the Fat32 format gets corrupted and the only fix is reformat. Thats troubling me! :(

Thankyou

Edit 1: Are both of these backward compatible to FAT32?
Last edited by makh on 2018-09-11 12:05, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby p.H » 2018-09-09 20:48

makh wrote:What will be a better choice to use for a usb pen drive?

It depends on how you intend to use the pen drive.
If you want to install a GNU/Linux system, F2FS is a better choice because it is POSIX-compliant and is natively supported by the mainline Linux kernel. exFAT is only supported via FUSE or a non-mainline kernel driver.

makh wrote:Are both of these backward compatible to FAT32?

No.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby eor2004 » 2018-09-09 22:33

I have recently formatted a flash drive from fat32 to exfat and the read/write speeds went up considerably, I had to do the formatting on a windows 10 secondary pc that I have because I wasn't able on my main debian machine with gparted, exfat formatted flash drive worked fine on the windows 10 machine and in my debian pc, so I would recommend to go with exfat, that is if you want compatibility with windows machine, if not go with ext2, hope this helps!

P.S. While exfat gives you a couple of features that fat32 doesn't have, like been able to transfer files larger than 4gb (you cannot do this on fat32), the downside is that certain devices aren't compatible with it!
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby debiman » 2018-09-10 04:15

What will be a better choice to use for a usb pen drive?

better? you should employ only The Best!!!

Sometimes the Fat32 format gets corrupted and the only fix is reformat. Thats troubling me!

yes, that would trouble me too.
it has never happened to me, but if it ever did i would consider getting a new usb stick.
i would never use fat32 on a hard drive.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby Head_on_a_Stick » 2018-09-10 05:14

I've been using f2fs in USB sticks for a while now, the only reason to use FAT is if the stick has to be read from Windows.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby L_V » 2018-09-10 06:17

eor2004 wrote: exfat/ I had to do the formatting on a windows 10 secondary pc that I have because I wasn't able on my main debian machine with gparted,

Code: Select all
$ apt-cache search exfat
exfat-utils - utilities to create, check, label and dump exFAT filesystem
exfat-fuse - read and write exFAT driver for FUSE

+ your comparison is not fair because you compare a FAT32 potentially already fragmented with a fresh new exFAT formatting.
note: the subject is not FAT32/exFAT, but exFAT/F2FS.

The first question is ....: a USB Key ... to do what with it ? F2FS will drastically limit portability for document sharing.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby p.H » 2018-09-10 07:24

L_V wrote:your comparison is not fair because you compare a FAT32 potentially already fragmented with a fresh new exFAT formatting

Does fragmentation matter so much on a USB flash drive ?
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby L_V » 2018-09-10 07:36

Probably not or little (to be confirmed), but hard to believe eor2004 claims he found exfat "much faster" than FAT32, and wonder about his measurement methodology.
The default cluster size might have an effect: FAT32: 4k / exFAT: 32k.
=> may be some noticeable difference for very big files (limited to 4G for FAT32).
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby eor2004 » 2018-09-10 22:30

The usb flash drive is a Kingston 32gb usb3 I have bought recently, with the default fat32 filesystem that came from factory, read/write speeds fluctuated between 500K to 6mb per second when transfering different data files and sizes, next I tried formatting with ext2, jfs, fat16, ntfs and got the same result as before, then I read on internet that exfat is a file system optimized for flash drives and tried that, the read/write speeds fluctuated from 7.5mb to 32mb per second, so as you can see it was a considerable increase in speeds with exfat.

Just want to make clear that exfat worked better for this specific flash drive, I have a couple of sandisk 32gb usb3 flash drives that works very fast with ext2 and fat32 file systems, I'm still trying to find out why exfat worked better for the Kingston flash drive than the other file systems I have tried on it, I hope this helps to clarify any doubts you might have, cheers!

P.S. Here's the link to the article I have read about exfat: https://www.digitalcitizen.life/what-is-exfat-why-useful and here:https://www.howtogeek.com/235596/whats-the-difference-between-fat32-exfat-and-ntfs/
Last edited by eor2004 on 2018-09-10 22:39, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby RU55EL » 2018-09-10 22:38

Head_on_a_Stick wrote:I've been using f2fs in USB sticks for a while now, the only reason to use FAT is if the stick has to be read from Windows.


Or a Blu-ray/DVD player.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby makh » 2018-09-11 12:04

Thank you All, for your kind input!

Previously, I had an issue, a while ago with disk getting corrupt, very frequently. Then I had to ntfs - format it. It worked good for a few months. Then it was undetectable, one day.

It seems that exfat is a better choice, at the least for now, as f2fs has cross platform support limitations. It would have been nice, if f2fs was backward compatible with FAT32, then cross platform support wouldnt have been an issue.

Thankyou
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby debiman » 2018-09-12 05:16

makh wrote:It would have been nice, if f2fs was backward compatible with FAT32, then cross platform support wouldnt have been an issue.

i don't think this would work if the operating system that's supposed to read/write files does not support f2fs...
the only reason Linux supports FAT32 is becasue some folks decided to implement it for Linux, not because it's "cross platfrom".
The only reason Windows would support f2fs is if they implement support into the OS.
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Re: Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby makh » 2018-09-12 10:32

debiman wrote:
makh wrote:It would have been nice, if f2fs was backward compatible with FAT32, then cross platform support wouldnt have been an issue.

i don't think this would work if the operating system that's supposed to read/write files does not support f2fs...
the only reason Linux supports FAT32 is becasue some folks decided to implement it for Linux, not because it's "cross platfrom".
The only reason Windows would support f2fs is if they implement support into the OS.

Hi

I think that backward compatibility in a simple filesystem would be possible, as exfat is a superset of FAT32, with only LBA support for large disk and larger file sizes. A FAT32 system should/can read it! But I am not a programmer, just thinking it in theory. :wink:

Thankyou
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Re: [SOLVED] Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby p.H » 2018-09-13 07:06

makh wrote: as exfat is a superset of FAT32

AFAICS, exFAT is not a superset of FAT32 like VFAT is a superset of FAT or ext3 is a superset of ext2. FAT and exFAT are different filesystems with no on-disk layout compatibility.
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Re: [SOLVED] Better choice: exfat or f2fs

Postby makh » 2018-09-13 14:15

p.H wrote:
makh wrote: as exfat is a superset of FAT32

AFAICS, exFAT is not a superset of FAT32 like VFAT is a superset of FAT or ext3 is a superset of ext2. FAT and exFAT are different filesystems with no on-disk layout compatibility.


Very sorry: I meant opensource f2fs in my last point, not the closed source exfat.

Again:
f2fs should have been backwards compatible to FAT32!

Thankyou
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