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I have a Western Digital 40 gig hard drive. I installed XP pro on it using the NTFS file system. Is there any way to go back FAT32? DOS will not see NTFS to my knowledge. thanks

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Last Post by suRoot
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I have a Western Digital 40 gig hard drive. I installed XP pro on it using the NTFS file system. Is there any way to go back FAT32? DOS will not see NTFS to my knowledge. thanks

Why, exactly, do you want DOS access if you have XP already? In my case, it's because I have a triple-boot system: Windows XP, Win98SE, and Linux. FAT 32 is trivially readable by all three.

It all depends on what you want to do with it, I suppose. provides a series of utilities that can access NTFS from DOS, including a boot floppy. Some utilities are free, some cost money. The site also has good information about the two file systems and their comparisons. In most respects, NTFS has it all over FAT32--no file-size limit, larger hard drives, and higher reliability.

You could set up a FAT32 drive partition of, say, 2 GB and use it to transfer files between OSes, if that's what you're after. Give us a better idea of your intent and we can help further.

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I have a Western Digital 40 gig hard drive. I installed XP pro on it using the NTFS file system. Is there any way to go back FAT32? DOS will not see NTFS to my knowledge. thanks

If you wish to change the drive's file system, you will have to "fdisk" it, and delete the NTFS partition. Of course you will lose all your data, so if you need anything important, get it before you make any changes.
After you delete the NTFS, you can set up a primary DOS partition and format it to FAT32 if you wish. BTW, "real" DOS won't see FAT32. You need a FAT partition to use DOS. You can create multiple partitions on your drive if you wish.
I don't have XP, but I think you have the option when running the setup program to go NTFS or FAT32. I don't believe they provide the option for changing the file system type after it's been done. (from one to the other)

Good luck.

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..Or, you can give Partition Magic a try. I think it can change NTFS to FAT32, im not very sure abt this though. but what i know is, you won't lose any of the Data you have in the HDD.

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