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Microsoft Windows Vista On Demand by Steve Johnson - Perspection, Inc.

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Formatting a Disk

Formatting a disk—including hard disks, USB flash drives and flash memory cards—prepares it so that you can store information on it. Formatting removes all information from the disk, so you should never format a disk that has files you want to keep. When you format a disk, you need to specify the certain settings; Windows has default settings recommended. Capacity is how much data the disk or partition can hold, such as the physical size, storage size, and sector size. A file system is the overall structure in which files are named, stored, and organized. NTFS and FAT32 are types of file systems. Disk allocation unit size, or cluster size, is a group of sectors on a disk. The operating system assigns a unique number to each ...

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