Which of the following partition table types does Windows (8.1) support (beside msdos and gpt):

  • aix
  • amiga
  • bsd
  • dvh
  • gpt
  • mac
  • msdos
  • pc98
  • sun

Officially, it only supports an MBR (msdos in Linux terms) and or a GPT.

In practice, it's not likely to ever encounter any of the other formats, in particular:

  • aix The format used by IBM's AIX operating system. The OS itself is still used, but it's a POWER-only platform, and it's really only a terminal-server type system, so you're likely to never encounter disks with this partition table unless you work IT for a company that uses AIX.
  • amiga The Amiga Rigid Disk Block (RDB for short), used by Amiga DOS and Amiga OS. This one is kind of neat for multiple reasons (it's a linked list, so there's no upper limit on parititon numbers, and it can embed filesystem drivers alongside the partition definitions), but not used by much else. I think AROS might use it, but I'm not sure. Overall, not likely to encounter this unless you're an Amiga hobbyist.
  • bsd BSD disk labels. These you may actually encounter from a Windows system, as they are still used by all modern 4.4BSD descendents when not using GPT, but Windows doesn't support nested partition tables, so you wouldn't be able to read them anyway (because they are usually placed inside an MBR partition). Overall though, unless you actually use any kind of BSD, you probably won't see them.
  • dvh The SGI Disk Volume Header. Primarily used by SGI IRIX, which is now a dead product. You're not likely to run into any of these unless you work for a company that uses old SGI systems.
  • mac Apple Partition Map (APM), used on older APple systems by the Classic OS. Still supported by OS X/macOS, but not widely used except by hobbyists or people who use really old Mac's.
  • pc98 A PC-98 partition table. PC-98 is an old alternative to the IBM PC architecture that also used x86 processors. The platform is essentially defunct now, with bare-bones support in FreeBSd and NetBSD, but otherwise essentially nothing modern you can run on it. The chances of you encountering these without actively trying are essentially zero (even Linux doesn't run on PC-98 systems anymore).
  • sun The Sun disklabel format. Used by older SunOS and Solaris systems, modern Solaris uses GPT or MBR with ZFS on top for volume management. Unless you have old SPARC-based Sun systems you deal with, you won't see this.
  • Out of curiosity, I created a pc98 partition table on my USB flash drive and Windows has no problem with it. – Weylyn Savan Apr 15 '18 at 17:10
  • @WeylynSavan Huh, that actually kind of surprises me a bit. My guess is that at some point there was official Windows support for the platform (it was still a 32-bit x86 platform, the big differences were mostly firmware related), in which case Microsoft would of course still support the partition tables used by it. – Austin Hemmelgarn Apr 16 '18 at 13:00
  • I learned now more about filesystems and wanted to answer now this question and it's already got a good quility answer. Nevermind +1 for an answer that should be mine :P – Stackcraft_noob May 5 '18 at 12:14

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