exFAT Extended FAT File System

June 10, 2010

Convert from exFAT to NTFS

Filed under: Forensic File Systems — rshullic @ 11:52 pm

In an earlier post I addresses the issues of converting between FAT file systems, especially between exFAT and FAT16 or FAT32. The bottom line was that there was no “CONVERT” command, and there exists today between FAT16 or FAT32 and NTFS. Actually, it is not even really between, you can use the CONVERT command from FAT 16 to NTFS or from FAT32 to NTFS, you can’t go from NTFS to any FAT file system, and that includes exFAT.

So the question that came up was converting from exFAT to NTFS, how do you do this. And I was thinking of how does CONVERT handles this, and the answer appears to be it doesn’t.

Here is what I did:

I inserted a 1GB USB Flash drive and formatted it exFAT. [I tried this twice, once on a WIndows NT SP3 system with the driver, and Server 2008 SP2 system]

I tried the “convert i: /fs:NTFS” command and got the following message:

CONVERT is not available for EXFAT drives.

Just to make sure, I reformatted the USB Flash drive to FAT32, issued the same CONVERT command, and the drive formatted.

So the conclusion here is that the CONVERT command does not support exFAT as an input file system.

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6 Comments »

  1. how to chenge file system from exfat to ntfs

    Comment by amin — November 1, 2010 @ 9:05 am | Reply

  2. so in short u don’t have any answer…anybody knows how to convert hard drive from exFAT to NTFS..i am so irritated with my 2TB hard drive i bought few days ago!

    Comment by croud_hero — December 11, 2012 @ 11:12 am | Reply

    • Microsoft does not provide a CONVERT utility as it does for FAT32 to NTFS
      However there are non-microsoft utilities showing up that may provide conversion. But it has to otherwise be done manually.

      Comment by rshullic — December 12, 2012 @ 3:38 am | Reply

  3. Right click My Computer and select Manage.
    Open the Device Manager and find your USB drive under the Disk Drives heading.
    Right click the drive and select Properties.
    Choose Policies tab and select the “Optimize for performance” option.
    Click OK.
    Open My Computer
    Select Format on the flash drive.
    Choose NTFS in the File System dropdown box.
    Device Formatting is completed.

    Comment by prats — January 5, 2014 @ 8:19 am | Reply

    • Prats,
      No sure where you are going with this. It would appear that you sequence of commands would CHANGE the files ystem from exFAT to NTFS, but would not CONVERT it to NTFS. When we say CONVERT, we are discussing the conversion in the context of the Windows CONVERT command, i.e. change the drive from exFAT to NTFS without loosing the files already stored on the exFAT partition. If you format the media to NTFS, as you seem to indicate, you will lose the files still resident on the file system after the NTFS format is complete.

      Comment by rshullic — January 5, 2014 @ 10:13 am | Reply

      • Prats,

        I have the same problem, too on how to covert exFat file system to NTFS in windows 7 64 bit. I’ve tried almost any suggested solutions offered by enthusiasts on the internet, but no luck. I am hoping for Microsoft (who designed the ExFat file system) to offer the conversion process.

        Comment by NEHEMIAH — January 25, 2014 @ 4:03 pm


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