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Formatting your drive in FAT32

November 2015

The Windows XP operating system on the computer may have issues related to formatting drives in FAT 32.This happens because computers with the Windows XP platform refuse to format a partition greater in size than 40 GB in FAT 32.This formatting drive issue can be solved, and it requires formatting the installation CD through the use of console recovery, but for that the administrator's password is essential. If it is not available, then the boot has to be done with the help of software that allows formatting in FAT 32.

Formatting your drive in FAT32


Windows XP normally refuses to format a partition larger than 40 GB with FAT32. However this operation performs properly with NTFS


The solution for this issue is to boot your installation CD and use the Console Recovery by pressing the R key. Once the safe mode shows C:\> type the following command:

format x: /fs:fat32
  • Replace the letter x by the partition that you are actually formatting, e.g . partition D:
  • Note:
    • Formatting from FAT32 is refused whenever the we type cmd into Run
    • The administrator password is required for formatting under console recovery
    • If you have forgotten your administrator password, the only solution is to format using software which enables you to format in FAT32 , e.g, FAT32FORMAT.
      • FAT32FORMAT is available for free download here
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Published by netty5. - Latest update by Paul Berentzen
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