(ReFS) Microsoft’s New File System For Windows 8 Server


Microsoft’s new Operating System Windows 8 is expected  to be launched in fourth Quarter of 2012. Microsoft  has claimed that it is the fastest and best Operating system ever built. This OS is coming with  new features like Lock Screen, Home Screen, App Store, Windows Explorer and many more. For this brand new OS they have decided to come with a new Generation File System ReFS (Resilient File System).

What is the Use File Systems

The basic purpose of File System using in OS’s to organize, store, retrieve, update your data and manage available space in Hard Drives. Hard Drives are made up of several circular platters rotating around an axis. The tracks on these Hard Drives are divided into segments called Sectors. Each sector is of 512 bytes in size. File system manages the data in the form of clusters which is the smallest disk unit managed by operating system.

Before Microsoft had launched Window XP, FAT16 and FAT32 (File Allocation Table with 16 or 32 bit) was used in Computer Systems. After this Microsoft came up with  NTFS (New Technology File System) in 2003 which is the most recommended and widely used file system till date. This file system provides  high security and better performance than the FAT file system. Microsoft is recommending NTFS 5 file system which has more advance features than the FAT.

Microsoft is releasing a new file system ReFS for its new Operating System Windows 8 Server. It has all the features of widely used file system NTFS as well many other.

What is ReFS File System

RefS is the newly engineered next generation file system which is also known as Photogon. RefS uses following structured algorithm to index the data on the Hard Drive.

It allows each directory and file to grow its size with little impact on performance and speed which was the big limitation in NTFS File System. Right now ReFS file system will be implemented only on the Windows 8 Server and it will be available for Windows 8 at later stage. The basic purpose after the designing this file system, is to keep data safe and prevent OS from potential corruptibility.

The Development Manager for Windows Storage and File System Department, Surendra Verma said:

Underneath this reused portion (the code responsible for implementing the Windows file system semantics), the NTFS version of the code-base uses a newly architected engine that implements on-disk structures such as the Master File Table (MFT) to represent files and directories. ReFS combines this reused code with a brand-new engine, where a significant portion of the innovation behind ReFS lies.

Maximum size that ReFS will support is 4 PB (Petabyte, 1 PB = 1 Million gigabyte = 1 thousand terabyte) per storage pool and file length is upto 32,000 (unicode) characters. In a single storage volume there will be 2^64 (about 18 quintillion) directories and in each directory there will be 2^64 files.

Key Features of ReFS File System

  • It Maintain High degree compatibility with NTFS and as well as minimizes the ones with limited value at the same time.
  • It verifies the corrupted data and also auto correct this data when possible.
  • It provides metadata integrity with checksums.
  • An optional Integrity Streams are providing to users to integrate their data.
  • It also provides large volume, file and directory sizes.
  • It is with better performance and removes data redundancy for fault tolerance.
  • Disc scrubbing for protection against latent disk errors.
  • Keep entire volume intact, online and accessible.
  • It is highly scalable which explains why it is server only file system.
  • It supports full set of Storage Spaces which will allow users to create storage pools from multiple physical and virtual storage devices.

ReFS has been tested under rigorous conditions like overloading ,sudden power failure.

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