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Microsoft® Windows® Internals: Microsoft Windows Server™ 2003, Windows XP, and Windows 2000, 4th Edition by David A. Solomon, Mark E. Russinovich

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NTFS On-Disk Structure

This section describes the on-disk structure of an NTFS volume, including how disk space is divided and organized into clusters, how files are organized into directories, how the actual file data and attribute information is stored on disk, and finally, how NTFS data compression works.

Volumes

The structure of NTFS begins with a volume. A volume corresponds to a logical partition on a disk, and it is created when you format a disk or part of a disk for NTFS. You can also create a RAID volume that spans multiple disks by using the Windows Disk Management MMC snap-in.

A disk can have one volume or several. NTFS handles each volume independently of the others. Three sample disk configurations for a 150-MB hard disk are illustrated ...

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