FORMAT.com

Format a disk for use with Windows.

Syntax
      FORMAT drive: [/FS:file-system] [/V:label] [/Q] [size] [/C]
Key /FS:file-system The file system (FAT or NTFS).
The NTFS file system does not function on floppy disks.
/V:label The volume label.
/Q Quick format.
/C Compression - files added to the new disk will be compressed.
[size] may be defined either with /F:size or /A:size

/F:size size is the size of the floppy disk (720, 1.2, 1.44, 2.88, or 20.8).

/A:size Allocation unit size.
Default settings (via /F) are strongly recommended for general use.
NTFS supports 512, 1024, 2048, 4096, 8192, 16K, 32K, 64K. FAT supports 8192, 16K, 32K, 64K, 128K, 256K. NTFS compression is not supported for allocation units above 4096.

Example

@echo off
Echo Warning this will reformat the entire D: disk!
PAUSE
format D: /FS:NTFS /x

"The disks had a recording density of 1,100 bits per inch, and could move data out of the drive at 77 kilobytes per second" ~ Early hard drive specs.

Related:


Q314878 - Choosing Cluster Size when formatting a hard drive
KB955704 - WinXP support for the exFAT file system format
Q252448 - How to create an NT Bootdisk
Floppy Disks - History from Wikipedia
Equivalent bash command (Linux): mkfs, in FreeBSD & OSX: newfs, fsck_exfat


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