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What is best unix filesystem for external hdd. I don't want to share data with Windows.

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closed as primarily opinion-based by mpy, Tog, Dave M, Mokubai, ncdownpat Oct 16 '13 at 21:04

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

4 Answers 4

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I would say that ext2 or ext3 would be good choices for purely Linux usage, since all Linux kernels of any reasonably recent vintage will support it.

However, you said "unix". Many other Unix and Unix-like systems do NOT support ext2 and its descendants. It's hard to give a perfect answer without knowing the exact details of what you need to do. Almost any *nix will support FAT32. If you want something enormously more damage-resistant and with far more support for file attributes, NTFS is a good choice, but again not all *nix systems support this, especially older ones.

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XFS is worth a try.

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If you're not interested in sharing with a Windows machine go for whatever filesystem you normally use for Linux. For me that would mean ext3.

ext3 (and other members of the ex* family) does not play well with Windows or OS X for that matter, so you should make sure you don't need share with a Windows at any time.

If you need interoperability between Linux, Windows and OS X, then FAT32 is the easiest way to go, even though it is an aging filesystem.

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Ext3 is supported everywhere! Even on windows if needed for sharing ;-) ( http://www.chrysocome.net/explore2fs )

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