Why should I use HPFS? What does it offer me? Does it work with DOS?
HPFS is an installable file system (IFS) provided with OS/2 Warp which may optionally be used instead of (or alongside) the standard DOS-style FAT (File Allocation Table) file system. HPFS offers long file names (up to 254 characters including the path, greatly exceeding the "8 dot 3" limit in DOS's FAT file system), contiguous storage of extended attributes (without the EA DATA. SF file used by FAT), resistance to file fragmentation, improved media error handling, smaller cluster size, support for larger file storage devices (up to 512 GB), and speedier disk operation, particularly on large hard disks, on systems with more than 6 MB of RAM. HPFS is not case sensitive, although it does preserve case in file names.
However, HPFS is not currently supported on removeable media, although some programs (e.g. BACKUP) preserve long file names on such FAT disks. Also, native DOS cannot access a HPFS partition without a special utility. However, DOS/Windows sessions running under OS/2 can use all files that conform to the "8 dot 3" naming conventions, even if they are stored on HPFS volumes. (FAT is not required for compatibility with DOS and Windows applications running under OS/2 Warp.)
Note that PowerQuest has released Partition Magic, a utility which can convert the DOS FAT file system to OS/2 HPFS on-the-fly, leaving all your files intact. Partition Magic also allows you (free space permitting) to repartition your hard disk without destroying any files. This utility can save an enormous amount of time in managing your hard disks. Contact your favorite OS/2 Warp software dealer to order Partition Magic.
(3.4) Disk Utilities (3.15) Dealers Specializing in OS/2 Warp (4.3) Hard Disk Partitioning (4.4) Starting OS/2 Warp from Diskette