FAT32 vs NTFS vs exFAT

The tendency of many of our customers is to use NTFS to format their Removable USB Flash Drive for duplication.

However, NTFS is less than a desirable tool for this purpose.

The reason is that NTFS has a dynamic FAT, and maintains a log file and checkpoint information.  This is an advantage if the file system is compromised and has to be restored, but a distinct disadvantage when duplicating Flash Drives, as every insertion into a computer changes the log file/image, and rules out "Compare" as a QA tool.

This is also the reason why we sometimes receive two masters of the same image, but they will not compare. The customer will copy one master to the second on a duplication machine, but as soon as he inserts the masters into a computer to check whether the duplication was successful, or to do a check sum, the masters become different entities.

Thus we sincerely recommend that exFAT be used for mastering software for duplication.  This will enable us to compare destination copies to the master, to ensure a complete and correct duplication.

January, 2021