Can I use the empty space on my bootable USB drives for storage?

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  1. Posts : 24,632
    10 Home x64 (21H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #11

    Yes. Fat32 is the lowest common denominator, understood not just by PCs but Macs and most other devices too. There's nothing to stop you reformatting it though, ExFAT would be the next most 'universally accepted' format. A Legacy BIOS PC requires a boot usb to be Fat32 though, so take care when choosing a format.

    How-To Geek | What’s the Difference Between FAT32, exFAT, and NTFS?
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  2. Posts : 165
    Win10 Pro
       #12

    Bree said:
    Yes. Fat32 is the lowest common denominator, understood not just by PCs but Macs and most other devices too. There's nothing to stop you reformatting it though, ExFAT would be the next most 'universally accepted' format. A Legacy BIOS PC requires a boot usb to be Fat32 though, so take care when choosing a format.
    Thanks Bree,
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  3. Posts : 123
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #13

    Thanks, all
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  4. Posts : 7,456
    Windows 10 Home 20H2
       #14

    Some PCs can boot from exFAT, while some cannot.
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  5. Posts : 920
    Windows 10 Pro
       #15

    Another point to keep in mind is that NTFS and I believe exFat support certain file attributes that Fat32 does not, so you may cause issues with some file formats when copying them to a Fat32 device, other than just file size restrictions. I am sure MS Docs will list the differences somewhere.
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  6. Posts : 872
    11 Home
       #16

    This is what I use:
    https://www.ventoy.net

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  7. Posts : 24,632
    10 Home x64 (21H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #17

    Pejole2165 said:
    Another point to keep in mind is that NTFS and I believe exFat support certain file attributes that Fat32 does not.....

    It's just NTFS that has extra attributes, like ownership, permissions and alternate file streams. Neither ExFAT nor Fat32 support any of those, I believe they are identical as far as the attributes they support.
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