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Does Windows 8 read ReFS? Is there a patch available or plans to add support?

My question is motivated by my desire to switch to ReFS due to the better benchmarks but I am hesitant as it may render recovery and migration difficult, as for example Linux can't read it.

My usage case is taking the HD, putting it in an enclosure, and reading it from a laptop for data recovery.

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Also see this. –  Karan Oct 31 '12 at 1:50

5 Answers 5

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Only Windows 8 Server products support ReFS.

I did find the link below.

"With this MOD you can extend Windows 8 client support to format your drives or partitions in new file system ReFS", adding read write capabilities to mounted ReFS drives.

Note: currently testing on my W8 test pc.

Note: testing done, see results below.

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If you connect a ReFS formatted disc to Windows 8 (RTM enterprise evaluation version in my case) you will get this message, but it will mount the disk and give it a drive letter, just no access to the drive contents.

. enter image description here

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enter image description here

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If you look in disk management it will show as a RAW basic disc (Disk1)

enter image description here

The MOD above does add ReFS read and write support to W8 (non server) (64bit W8 only)

Installation is easy, you simply copy 2 files to the correct locations and add the registry file, reboot.

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support now shown in format utility

support shown in format utility

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After format properties on the 300gig drive

After format properties on the 300gig drive

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I copied and can read files on the ReFS partition now.

I copied and can read files on the ReFS partition now.

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There was a blog post about the next generation file system for Windows done a while back. In short, yes you can use ReFS on Windows 8. However, you will not be able to upgrade a drive from NTFS to ReFS without losing the data.

Storage and file system

Windows 8 includes a new file system called ReFS (Resilient File System). It’s compatible with most NTFS file features, and, as the name suggests, it adds features to improve data integrity. Features left out include BitLocker, compression, and 8.3-format short filenames. What ReFS brings to the table is improved data verification and auto-correction: ReFS continually scans the file system, including rarely used older files, to ensure they haven’t become corrupted, repairing bad disk clusters and moving data as necessary. Note, however, that ReFS works only on secondary drives, not boot drives. Your boot drive will still be NTFS.

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It's ONLY supported on the server OS, not on standard Windows 8. (I first read this on that very blog post you link) –  Shinrai Oct 30 '12 at 20:55
    
So, I can take the HD stick it into a Windows 8 comptuer and I will be able to read it? –  Mikhail Oct 30 '12 at 20:55
    
kobaltz: From your link, "ReFS will be introduced only as part of Windows Server 8" –  Moab Oct 30 '12 at 20:56
    
@Moab this stuff is a bit confusing :-) –  Mikhail Oct 30 '12 at 20:58
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@Misha it is supposed to be, its from Microsoft. –  Moab Oct 30 '12 at 21:16

This article doesn't say anything about an internal storage drive, but it does answer all other uses.

Sadly, there are a few caveats. Unlike the move from FAT to NTFS on the desktop, there will be no way to convert an existing volume to ReFS without creating a new volume and copying the data manually. There's no support for booting from ReFS, with NTFS being retained as the file system of choice for boot drives; and you can't use ReFS on removable drives.

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Support for ReFS was added in Windows 8.1.

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With Windows 8.1 it is possible to enable system-wide support for ReFS (including disk manager and format tool) with the following registry key. This will allow you to format exsisting partitions to ReFS.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00 [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\MiniNT] “AllowRefsFormatOverNonmirrorVolume”=dword:00000001

Source : My blog

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