Creation of NTFS partitions leading to data loss
New Technology File System or NTFS file system is the most widely used file system on PCs. This file system was introduced after FAT, and all the PCs running on FAT file system as the default file system, were now changed to NTFS by Microsoft. This shift by Microsoft was basically because of the advanced features that were available on NTFS file system compared to FAT file system. This included better security, and the support for larger file size i.e. file size of upto 4TB, when compared to the FAT file system which supported a file size of 2GB.
NTFS is in many ways different from FAT file system. In FAT file system, the first few sectors maintain complete information about all the data present on the hard drive, while in NTFS file system the information about the data is distributed randomly on various sectors of the hard drive. NTFS partitions are of two types namely NTFS 4 and NTFS 5. NTFS 5 was introduced by Microsoft in Windows 2000, while NTFS 4 was introduced with SP4 and its higher versions. NTFS 5 file system supports an encrypted file system, disk quotas and sparse file support which is absent in NTFS 4.
These features prompted many FAT file system users, to shift from FAT to NTFS. Users can make use of the Convert.exe or the Setup program, to convert FAT file system to NTFS file system.
In Convert.exe method, the user needs to go to Start, and then click on Run. Once the Run window opens, the user need to type cmd in the space provided, to open the command prompt window. The user can get help about how to convert a FAT partitions to NTFS, by typing help convert in the command prompt and then pressing the Enter key. The user can convert a specific partition by typing convert drive_letter : /fs:ntfs in the command prompt. The important point that the user has to keep in mind is that once FAT partitions are converted to NTFS, they cannot be converted back into FAT.
However, if the conversion from FAT to NTFS is not done in the proper format i.e. by using a third party utilty, it could result in loss of partitions from the hard drive. In case you face a data loss situation of this type, it is best to make use of a partition recovery software, to get back the lost/deleted data. Undelete partition software lets you recover data from lost/deleted NTFS partitions from SATA, SCSI, and IDE hard drives.