Computing » Filesystem interoperability

Note: this list does not mentio

Also, this is by no means an exhaustive list, so please do contact me if you have any update suggestions. Last updated 31 July 2022.

Sources:

ADFS / Advanced Disc Filing System

Acorn’s successor to DFS. Also known as FileCore.

  • RISC OS: primary filesystem.
  • Linux: native support.
  • NetBSD: native support.

AdvFS / Advanced File System

Highly reliable filesystem originally for Digital/Tru64 UNIX.

  • Digital/Tru64 UNIX: primary filesystem.

Can likely be accessed via emulators and common-denominator filesystems; needs research/testing.

APFS / Apple File System

Apple’s proprietary “next-generation” filesystem to superseed HFS+.

  • macOS: primary filesystem since 10.13 High Sierra; native support since 10.12 Sierra.
  • Linux: kernel module support.

Easily accessible on Windows/Linux/*BSD/etc. by common means of file transfer, e.g. a FAT32 flash drive or e-Mail.

Apple DOS 3.𝑥 filesystem

Floppy disk format for DOS on the Apple II.

  • Apple DOS 3.𝑥: primary filesystem.
  • Windows/Linux/*BSD/macOS: accessible via DiskM8.

AFS / Ami-FileSafe

Amiga filesystem; presumably a successor to OFS and FFS.

  • AmigaOS: native support since around 1995.

AFS / AtheOS File System

Journalling filesystem for the obscure AtheOS, Syllable and Wave OS.

  • AtheOS: primary filesystem.
  • Syllable: primary filesystem.
  • Wave OS: primary filesystem.

Can likely be accessed via emulators and common-denominator filesystems; needs research/testing.

APF Imagination Machine disk file system

Little is known aside from on what it was used; needs research.

BetrFS

Experimental Bε-tree file system released in 2015.

  • Linux: VFS support on kernel 3.11.10.

BFS / Boot File System

Simple filesystem that contained files necessary for booting some old UNIX OSes.

  • System V, Version 4.0: secondary filesystem.
  • UnixWare: secondary filesystem.
  • Linux: native support.

BFS/BeFS / Be File System

BeOS and Haiku’s native filesystem.

  • BeOS: primary filesystem.
  • Haiku: primary filesystem.
  • Linux: native support.
  • SkyOS: native support.
  • Syllable: native support.

BFS / Byte File System

IBM’s filesystem for Unix applications on z/VM.

  • z/VM: co-primary filesystem.

Can likely be accessed via emulators and common-denominator filesystems; needs research.

Btrfs / B-tree file system

Increasingly popular scalable filesystem.

  • Linux: native support; de facto co-primary filesystem.
  • ReactOS: native support.

CBMFS

Commodore floppy disk drive OS’ native filesystem.

  • CBM DOS: native filesystem.
  • Windows/Linux/*BSD: accessible via VICE.

CDFS / Compact Disc File System

Predecessor to ISO 9660, developed by Simson Garfinkel and J. Spencer Love.

Only known by name; needs research.

CP/M filesystem

Disk format for the original CP/M.

  • CP/M: primary filesystem.
  • Linux/*BSD: accessible via Cpmtools.

+D

Miles Gordon Technology’s disk and printer interface for the Sinclair ZX Spectrum and SAM Coupé. Seemingly not a true filesystem; needs research.

DFS (Acorn) / Disc Filing System

A somewhat simple filesystem notorious for its differing implementations. Superseded by ADFS.

  • Acorn MOS: primary filesystem.

DFS (IBM)

Only known by name; needs research.

DTFS / Desktop File System

Only really known by name; needs research.

  • SCO OpenServer: native support at some point in the mid-1990s.

EROFS / Enhanced Read-only File System

Lightweight read-only filesystem.

  • Linux: native support since 5.4.

EFS / Extent File System

Pioneering extent-based filesystem, superseded by XFS.

  • IRIX: primary filesystem until v5.3.
  • Linux: native support since 2.4.20.
  • NetBSD: native support.

exFAT / Extensible File Allocation Table

Microsoft’s flash-friendly replacement for FAT32.

  • Windows: native support since Windows XP SP2.
  • Linux: native support since 5.4.
  • macOS: native support since 10.6.5.

ext / Extended file system

Original filesystem for Linux, replacing the MINIX filesystem. Quickly superseded by ext2, though often used on Linux floppies.

  • Linux: native support.

ext2 / Second extended file system

Successor to ext. Still somewhat in use for removable media, though eventually superseded by ext3.

  • Linux: native support.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • OpenBSD: native support.
  • Windows: support via Ext3Fsd.
  • ReactOS: native support in old versions.

ext3 / Third extended file system

Successor to ext2, adding journalling. Somewhat quickly superseded by ext4.

  • Linux: native support.
  • Windows: support via Ext3Fsd.

ext3cow / Third extended file system with copy-on-write

Copy-on-write-enabled version of ext3.

  • Linux: native support.

ext4 / Fourth extended file system

Successor to ext3, improving performance and limitations. Can be journalled or journalless.

  • Linux: native support; current de facto primary filesystem.
  • Windows: support via Ext3Fsd.

FAT / File Allocation Table

Original 8-bit structure for Microsoft’s various BASIC disks.

  • NCR Basic 6+: primary filesystem.

Might be accessible by later versions of FAT; needs research/testing.

FAT12 / 12-bit File Allocation Table

Essentially a noncompatible rewrite of 8-bit FAT, designed to be more compatible with CP/M’s standards. Common on most all floppy disks, though otherwise superseded by the backwards-compatible FAT16B for most purposes.

  • PC-DOS: primary filesystem until v3.0.
  • MS-DOS: primary filesystem until v3.0.
  • Windows: native support.
  • FreeBSD: native support.
  • OpenBSD: native support.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • NeXTStep: native support.
  • OS/2: native support.
  • eComStation: native support.
  • ArcaOS: native support.
  • RISC OS: native support.
  • ReactOS: native support.

Possibly accessible by later versions of FAT on Linux/BSD/etc.; needs research/testing.

FAT16 / 16-bit File Allocation Table

Backwards-compatible successor to 12-bit FAT. Note that when most people mention FAT16, they’re likely talking about its quick successor, FAT16B.

  • MS-DOS: primary filesystem between v3.0 and v4.0.
  • PC-DOS: primary filesystem between v3.0 and IBM DOS v4.0.
  • Windows: native support since Windows 3.1.
  • OS/2: native support.
  • eComStation: native support.
  • ArcaOS: native support.
  • ReactOS: native support.

FAT16B / 16-bit File Allocation Table, version B

An expansion to the original FAT16 with 32-bit sector counts, allowing usage of larger disks. When most people mention FAT16, they actually mean FAT16B. Superseded by the backwards-compatible FAT32 for most purposes.

  • MS-DOS: primary filesystem between v4.0 and Win98’s v7.1.
  • IBM DOS: primary filesystem since v4.0.
  • OS/2: primary filesystem until v1.2.
  • DR DOS: primary filesystem between v3.31 and v7.03.
  • Windows 9𝑥: primary filesystem between Windows 3.1 and Windows 98; native support since Windows 95.
  • Windows NT: native support.
  • FreeBSD: native support.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • OpenBSD: native support.
  • NeXTStep: native support.
  • RISC OS: native support.
  • OS/2: native support.
  • eComStation: native support.
  • ArcaOS: native support.
  • ReactOS: native support.

Possibly accessible by later versions of FAT on Linux/BSD/etc.; needs research/testing.

FAT32 / 32-bit File Allocation Table

Backwards-compatible successor to FAT16B with support for much larger disks. Still commonly used on removable media and as a common-denominator filesystem.

  • MS-DOS: primary filesystem since Win98 SE’s v7.1.
  • Windows 9𝑥: native support since Windows 95; primary filesystem since Windows 98 SE.
  • Windows NT: native support since Windows 2000.
  • Linux: native support.
  • FreeBSD: native support.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • OpenBSD: native support.
  • NeXTStep: native support.
  • macOS: native support.
  • RISC OS: native support.
  • OS/2: native support.
  • eComStation: native support.
  • Haiku: native support.
  • ArcaOS: native support.
  • DR-DOS: support via DRFAT32.

FATx

Xbox variant of FAT32.

  • ReactOS: native support.

FFS/AFFS / Amiga Fast File System

Amiga’s HDD-friendly replacement for OFS.

  • AmigaOS: primary filesystem since DOS/1.
  • Linux: native support.

Files-11

OpenVMS filesystem. Also known as ODS, for whatever reason.

  • OpenVMS: primary filesystem.
  • RSX-11: primary filesystem in some versions.

Fossil

Default filesystem for Plan 9 from Bell Labs.

  • Plan 9 from Bell Labs: native support.

HAMMER

High-availability filesystem originally for DragonFly BSD. Superseded by the backwards-compatible HAMMER2.

  • DragonFly BSD: native support; primary filesystem between v2.0 and v5.2.

HAMMER2

Successor to HAMMER with enhanced clustering.

  • DragonFly BSD: primary filesystem since v5.2.

HFS / Hierarchal File System (IBM)

Not to be confused with Apple’s HFS.

  • IBM MVS/ESA: primary filesystem.
  • HP/UX: native support.
  • IRIX: native support.
  • z/OS: native support; primary filesystem until v2.5.

HFS / Hierarchal File System (Apple)

Successor to MFS to support hard disks.

  • Classic Mac OS: native support since Mac OS 8.1; primary filesystem between System 2.1 and Mac OS 8.1.
  • macOS: native support until 10.15 Catalina.
  • NeXTStep: native support.

HFS+ / Hierarchal File System Plus

Successor to HFS, with better support for larger files. Superseded by APFS.

  • Classic Mac OS: primary filesystem since Mac OS 8.1.
  • macOS: primary filesystem until 10.12 Sierra.
  • Linux: native support.
  • Windows: driver support between Windows XP and 7 when using Boot Camp in OS X 10.6.

HPFS / High Performance File System

OS/2’s much-improved replacement of the FAT filesystem.

  • OS/2: primary filesystem since v1.2.
  • Windows NT: native support until 3.51.
  • Linux: native support.
  • DragonFly BSD: native support.
  • eComStation: native support.
  • ArcaOS: native support.

High Throughput File System

Journalling filesystem of SCO OpenServer.

  • SCO OpenServer: primary filesystem.

ISO 9660

The ubiquitous CD-ROM filesystem.

This filesystem is so universally understood that I can’t (currently) be bothered to list off every compatible OS. in-progress

  • Windows: native support.
  • FreeBSD: native support.
  • NeXTStep: native support.
  • ReactOS: native support.

JFFS / Journalling Flash File System

A popular flash-friendly filesystem.

  • Linux: native support since 2.4.10.

JFS / Journaling File System

IBM’s journalling filesystem, first used for AIX.

  • IBM AIX: primary filesystem since v3.1.
  • OS/2: primary filesystem since OS/2 Warp Server for eBusiness.
  • Linux: native support since 2.4.24.

LanyFS / Lanyard Filesystem

Experimental filesystem for removable devices.

  • Linux: non-mainline kernel module support.

LFS / Log-structured File System

Proof-of-concept added to 4.4BSD.

  • 4.4BSD: native support.
  • NetBSD: native support since 4.0.

LTFS / Linear Tape File System

Filesystem designed to make tape access behave more like a disk.

  • Windows/Linux/macOS: driver support via Quantum LTFS.

MDR

Registration and setting storage for Yamaha Electone organs. Needs research.

MFS / Macintosh File System

Original filesystem for the Macintosh for a short period before HFS.

  • Classic Mac OS: primary filesystem until System 3.1.; native support until Mac OS 8.0.
  • macOS: support via MFSLives.

MINIX file system

Originally a simplified, educational variant of UFS.

  • MINIX: primary filesystem.
  • Linux: native support; de facto primary filesystem till around 1995.
  • MiNT: native support.
  • HelenOS: native support.

NILFS / New Implementation of a Log-structured File System

Another sort of proof-of-concept logging filesystem.

  • Linux: native support since 2.6.30.
  • NetBSD: native support.

NOVA / Non-volatile Memory Accelerated

Log-structured filesystem for persistent memory.

  • Linux: since 4.13.

NTFS / New Technology File System

Microsoft’s most successful take on a journalling filesystem.

  • Windows NT: primary filesystem.
  • Linux: native support since 2.1.74.
  • macOS: native support since OS X 10.3.
  • FreeBSD: native support since 3.2.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • OpenBSD: native support since 4.9.
  • Haiku: native support.
  • ReactOS: native support (read-only).
  • Windows 9𝑥: driver support since Windows 95 via SysInternals’ NTFS98.
  • OS/2/eComStation/ArcaOS: plugin support via NetDrive
  • MS-DOS: driver support via Avira’s NTFS4DOS.
  • DR-DOS: driver support since v7.0 via NTFSREAD.

NVFS / Non-volatile File System

Flash memory filesystem made by Palm.

Unsure how to access it outside of PalmPilot devices.

NWFS / NetWare File System

A heavily modified version of FAT by Novell. Superseded by NSS.

  • NetWare: primary filesystem between v2 and v5.

NSS / Novell Storage Services

Novell’s successor to NWFS.

  • NetWare: primary filesystem since v5.

OFS / Amiga Old File System

Amiga’s predecessor to AFFS. Somewhat useless on anything but floppies.

  • TRIPOS: primary filesystem.
  • AmigaDOS: primary filesystem.
  • AmigaOS: native support; primary filesystem until v3.5.
  • NetBSD: native support.

OS-9 file system

Forested filesystem.

  • OS-9: primary filesystem.

PFS / Professional File System

  • AmigaOS: native support since around 1995.
  • MorphOS: native support.
  • AROS: native support.

ProDOS file system

Filesystem native to the ProDOS on the Apple II.

  • ProDOS: primary filesystem.

QFS

Multi-disk SAM-integrated archival filesystem from Oracle.

  • OpenSolaris: native support.
  • Linux: client support.

QNX4FS / QNX version 4 file system

  • QNX: primary filesystem between v4 and v6.

ReFS / Resilient File System

Microsoft’s enterprise-grade successor to NTFS. Can’t boot off it, though.

  • Windows: native support between Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 2017 Fall Creators Update, except for Windows 10 Enterprise and Pro for Workstations.

ReiserFS

Yet another general-purpose filesystem for Linux.

  • Linux: native support since 2.4.1.
  • ReactOS: native support.

Reliance

An embedded filesystem.

  • Linux: driver support?
  • QNX: driver support?

Reliance Nitro

A higher-performance rendition of Reliance.

  • Linux: driver support?
  • QNX: driver support?
  • Windows: driver support since Windows 2000 via RWD.

SFS / Amiga Smart File System

Amiga’s better-performing alternative to AFFS.

  • AmigaOS: native support since v1.279.
  • AROS: native support since v1.84.
  • MorphOS: native support since 1.224.
  • Linux: native support since 1.0beta12.

SkyFS / SkyOS File System

A fork of BFS for SkyOS.

  • SkyOS: primary filesystem.

Soup

Shallow database of sorts for the Newton platform.

  • Newton: primary filesystem.

Tux3

Experimental fork of ext3 with versioning.

  • Linux: non-mainline kernel module support.

TRSDOS filesystem

Used on the Tandy TRS-80 family.

Only known by name; needs research.

UBIFS / Unsorted Block Image File System

Nokia’s NAND-friendly alternative to JFFS2.

  • Linux: native support since 2.6.27.

UDF / Universal Disk Format

A write-once media format that supplanted ISO 9660.

This filesystem is so universally understood that I can’t (currently) be bothered to list off every compatible OS. in-progress

  • FreeBSD: native support.
  • OpenBSD: native support.

UFS / Unix File System

Disregarding mutually compatible vendor-specific additions, practically the original Version 7 Unix filesystem. Also known as FFS / Fast File System in some systems.

  • UNIX: primary filesystem since Version 7.
  • NeXTStep: primary filesystem.
  • A/UX: primary filesystem.
  • Solaris: primary filesystem.
  • SunOS: primary filesystem.
  • HP-UX: primary filesystem.
  • ULTRIX: primary filesystem.
  • Tru64 UNIX: native support.
  • FreeBSD: native support; primary filesystem until v5.0.
  • OpenBSD: native support; primary filesystem until v6.7.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • DragonFly BSD: native support.
  • Linux: native support.
  • macOS: native support until 10.7.

UFS2 / Unix File System, version 2

  • FreeBSD: primary filesystem since v5.0.
  • OpenBSD: primary filesystem since v6.7.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • DragonFly BSD: native support.
  • Linux: native support.

VxFS / Veritas File System

Extent-based filesystem developed for AT&T USL. Also known as JFS.

  • HP-UX: primary filesystem.
  • AIX: native support.
  • Solaris: native support.
  • Reliant UNIX: native support.
  • UnixWare: native support.
  • SCO OpenServer: native support.
  • Linux: native support.

WAFL / Write-Anywhere File Layout

Proprietary filesystem for Network Appliance’s FAS-series servers.

  • Data Ontap: primary filesystem.

WOFS / Write-once File System

A predecessor to ISO 9660 based on CDFS and sold by N/Hance.

Only known by name; needs research.

XFS

SGI said it wasn’t an acronym, but I’m pretty sure “FS” at least stands for “filesystem”.

  • IRIX: primary filesystem since v5.3.
  • Linux: native support.

Xiafs

A replacement for the MINIX filesystem for Linux, competing with ext for a short time.

  • Linux: native support between 0.99.15 and 2.1.21.

YAFFS / Yet Another Flash File System

A log-structured filesystem widely used in embedded and portable systems.

  • Linux: native support.
  • Windows CE: native support.
  • ThreadX: native support.
  • pSOS: native support.
  • RTEMS: native support.
  • eCos: native support.

zFS / z/OS File System

IBM’s crack at a high-performance mainframe filesystem. Not to be confused with ZFS.

  • z/OS: primary filesystem.
  • OS/390: primary filesystem.
  • MVS/EVA: native support sinve V5R2.2.

ZFS / Zettabyte File System

A sort-of filesystem-LVM hybrid by Sun.

  • Solaris: primary filesystem since around 2001.
  • FreeBSD: native support.
  • NetBSD: native support.
  • Linux: kernel module support.