Manjaro File Systems

File Systems

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This page provides information on some of the file systems commonly used in Manjaro. It also shows where and how they are used. Further information on these and other file systems can be found in the ARCH Wiki

A file system manages the space on a storage medium (hard disk, SSD ...). It makes this memory available to the operating system so that files can be saved and read again. Each of the following file systems has advantages and disadvantages. They are mostly developed for a special purpose and are therefore used in a certain environment.


File systems that are mostly used under linux.

Note that many file system drivers are already included in the Linux kernel. You may not need anything else to mount, read, or write these filesystems. But there are packages with additional tools. You may need them to format, check, repair, modify, or optimize such file systems. So if you regularly use a file system, it is a good idea to install the appropriate tools

Ext2 → Ext3 → Ext4

Ext4 is the default file system in Manjaro at the moment. It is the evolution of the most used Linux filesystems (Ext3, Ext2) and promises improved design, better performance, reliability, and features over its predecessors.

If you are using Ext2 or Ext3, you can convert the partition to Ext4. Ext4 uses journaling, checksums and write barriers and is therefore more robust against damage.

Currently Ext4 is fully supported in Win10 and OsX. Support for ext4 has been built in since WSL is included in Win10 (2016).

see, Ext4@ARCH-wiki, Ext4@wikipedia


In manjaro e2fsprogs is already installed


For advanced optimizations see the Archwiki Ext4 article.


A modern file system with a lot of advanced features. Its main advantage it to be a Copy-On-Write-filesystem

see, Btrfs@ARC-wiki, Btrfs@wikipedia


user $ pamac install btrfs-progs COPY TO CLIPBOARD

reiserfs → reiser4

Reiserf was the first journaling filesystem to be included in the standard kernel. It was actively used by some distros some time ago, but is not currently widely used. Reiser4 is the successor to reiserfs (3). However, Reiser4 seems not to be integrated in the kernel yet.

see Reiser4@ARCH-wiki, ReiserFS@wikipedia, Reiser4@wikipedia,


user $ pamac install reiserfsprogs reiser4progs COPY TO CLIPBOARD


File systems mostly used in windows


This today is used by most windows installs

see NTFS@ARCH-wiki, NTFS@wikipedia


user $ pamac install ntfs-3g COPY TO CLIPBOARD


File systems under DOS and early windows on a lot of floppydisks and USB-sticks

FAT16 → FAT32 (+VFAT)

This is a traditional file system under DOS and early Windows versions. Even today it can be found on many floppy disks, USB sticks and hard drives. It is supported by all types of operating systems and is therefore often used to exchange files, to pass them on, or to keep them accessible to both operating systems in the case of dualboot.

Even with FAT32, this comes not without its disadvantages.

  • no support for user rights or xattr
  • severely restricted file names (8.3 or LFN for VFAT, no distinction between lowercase and uppercase)
  • no files over 2GB (FAT16) 4GB (FAT32)
  • no journaling
  • not robust

FAT Filesystems do not use journaling. Data on such filesystems is vulnerable to irreparable corruption due to improper ejection or power outage.

see FAT@ARCH-wiki, FAT@wikipedia


user $ pamac install dosfstools COPY TO CLIPBOARD


Microsoft developed the exFAT (Extended File Alocation Table) in 2006 and optimized it for flash memories such as USB sticks and SD cards. It can store large files and large numbers of files, and it can manage very large partitions. It is supported by Linux, Windows, macOS and many other devices and is one of the most compatible file systems. ExFAT is included in Linux 5.4.

  • Flash friendly
  • No support for user rights or xattr
  • Files over 4 GB
  • Checksums for metadata
  • No journal
  • Not robust

exFAT FS does not use journaling. Data on such a filesystem is vulnerable to irreparable corruption due to improper ejection or power outage.

see ExFAT@wikipedia


user $ pamac install exfatprogs COPY TO CLIPBOARD


Filesystems mostly used in macOs


see HFSPlus@wikipedia

Install from AUR

user $ pamac install hfsprogs COPY TO CLIPBOARD



see XFS@ARCH-wiki


see ZFS@ARCH-wiki


Possible usage of Filesystems
Filesystem manjaro Win10 OsX Win9x, DOS
ext2 ▷ ExtFS
ext3/4 ▷ ExtFS ?
btrfs ● btrfs-progs ▷ ExtFS, WinBtrfs - -
reiser3 ● reiser4progs ▷ RFSTool ? -
reiser4 ● reiserfs ? ? -
NTFS ○ ntfs-3g ?
FAT ● dosfstools
exFAT ● exfatprogs ? ?
HFS ○ hfsprogs (AUR) ?
XFS ? ▷ ExtFS ?
ZFS ? ? ?
■ = fully supported
● = fully supported, additional tools to install
○ = partially supported
▷ = possible via external tools
? = feel free to extend ;-)
Some important properties
Properties ext2 ext3 ext4 btrfs reiserfs XFS
journaling - ● ordered ● ordered ▶ 2.6
barriers - ?
checksum - - ◎ metadata ● full ?
kompression - - - ●,
zstd ▶ 4.14/5.1
encryption - - ▶ 4.13 -
snapshots - - - -
TRIM possible - - ▶ 2.6.33 ▶ 4.3
xattr, ACL ? ACL ACL ACL
small repair ● fsck ● fsck ● fsck ● auto reiserfsck
journal repair ● fsck ● fsck ● fsck ● auto 3.2
repair after power loss - ? ● tune2fs, fsck ● auto, scrub
since 1993 2001 2008 2009 2001

See also

Wikipedia:Comparison of file systems
Archwiki:File Systems

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