Top 4 Best Free FAT32 Formatting Tools for Windows 11

Need a FAT32 format tool? This post will introduce you 4 best free FAT32 formatting tools, and help you solve the problem formatting a USB drive to FAT32 on Windows 11, or Windows 10.


By Irene / Updated on October 13, 2023

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What is FAT32?

FAT32 (File Allocation Table 32) is a file system as an extension of the earlier FAT file system, which is commonly used in computer systems and external storage devices. FAT32 is designed to organize and manage files on storage media such as hard drives, USB flash drives, and SD cards.

The main characteristic of FAT32 is that it uses a 32-bit file allocation table, allowing it to address larger disk space and accommodate individual files up to 4GB in size. This makes it suitable for storing multimedia files, such as videos or large software installations.

usb fat32

FAT32 is widely supported across different operating systems, and it provides a simple and compatible file system that allows for easy exchange of data between different devices and platforms.

However, FAT32 does have certain limitations. For instance, it cannot handle individual files larger than 4GB, and it has a maximum partition size of 2 TB for most implementations. 

Why should users format to FAT32?

Given the many useful features of FAT32, people are still looking for FAT32 format tools to convert the file system. Here we list the four common reasons that people choose FAT32.

Why you should format to FAT32:
Wide compatibility: FAT32 is widely supported across different operating systems Windows, including macOS, Linux, and gaming consoles. If you plan to use the storage device on multiple computers or devices with different operating systems, formatting to FAT32 ensures compatibility and seamless file sharing.
Device support: Many devices, such as PlayStation or other gaming consoles, media players, and smart TVs, require the FAT32 file system to ensure that it will be recognized and compatible with these devices.
Storage device requirements: Some older devices or specific equipment may have limitations or requirements that only support the FAT32 file system.
Restoration or repair: Formatting a storage device to FAT32 can be a useful step when restoring the device to its original state or repairing any file system-related issues or errors.
Notice: Formatting a storage device erases all existing data, so it's crucial to save important data before proceeding with the formatting process.

Top 4 best free FAT32 format tools

Normally, to format an SD card or USB drive to FAT32, you can use the following 4 tools. You can click the Table of Contents on the left side and go directly to the specific part.

1. Windows File Explorer

2. Windows Diskpart

3. Windows Disk Management

4. AOMEI Partition Assistant ( Recommended if your flash drive is larger than 32GB)

Method 1. Use Windows File Explorer

Using Windows File Explorer to format SD Card/USB drive to FAT32 should be the most common way.

Step 1. Open “This PC” and find “Devices and Drives”, and then right-click the target drive and click “Format”.

Step 2. You can see "File system" in the Format window, click the drop-down under it and select "FAT32”, and finally, click “Start” to format the drive.

Use File Explorer to format

Method 2. Using Windows Diskpart to format the drive to FAT32

If you are familiar with command line, Windows Diskpart should also be a good free FAT32 formatting tool.

Step 1. On your keyboard, press the "Win+R" simultaneously to open "Run" box, then type "Diskpart" and click "OK" (click Yes if prompted by the User Access Control).

Step 2. DISKPART will open in a command prompt window. And then type the following commands in sequence:

• list disk: see all disks connected to your computer, and you need to identify which drive needs to be formatted by size.
• select disk 1: select the disk which contains the target drive.
• list partition: list all partitions on the disk.
• select partition X: X refers the partition number that you need to format.
• format fs=fat32 or format fs=fat32 quick

diskpart format fat32

Note: If the disk is set to be write-protected, you need to run extra different commands to format it to FAT32 via DiskPart.

Method 3. Run Disk Management to perform FAT32 format

Using Windows Disk Management to format to FAT32 is also a simple way.

Step 1. Press “Win+R” to open the run command box, and then type “diskmgmt.msc”.  After typing, you need to press the Enter Key.

Step 2. When you press the Enter Key, you will see a Disk Management. Right-click the drive you need to format, and choose “Format”. In case of data loss, please confirm that all your data has been made a backup. Finally, you can wait until the steps are done.

format disk with dm

Notice: Formatting will wipe drive data, so we kindly remind you to make a backup and protect your important data.

Method 4. AOMEI Partition Assistant - the Best Free FAT32 Formatting tool

Here, we have introduced 3 free FAT32 format tools for you. However, when you use the 3 tools to format drive to FAT32, you may encounter some errors, for instance, "The volume is too big for FAT32”, “The disk is write protected”, etc. Thus, you cannot format the drive to FAT32 successfully.

At this time, you need a more powerful FAT32 format tool -AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard,  which can not only allow you to format a drive larger than 32GB easily, but it can also format write-protected disk and RAW USB

What’s more, it supports formatting to exFAT/Ext4/Ext3/Ext2/NTFS file systems, and formatting the partition which is not the first primary partition on a removable disk. Besides, it can directly convert NTFS to FAT32 without any data loss.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Step 1. Install and launch AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. Right-click the hard drive larger than 32GB and select "Format Partition".

format 2tb partition

Step 2. Choose "FAT32" in the File System drop-down menu. You can also change cluster size, and partition label.

format 2tb partition to fat32

Step 3. Back to the main interface, click "Apply" to commit the pending operation. Then wait for the process to be completed, the large hard drive will be formatted to FAT32.


Notice: If your hard drive currently uses NTFS as its file system, you can switch it to FAT32 without erasing any data by upgrading to the Professional Edition. It’s "NTFS to FAT32 Converter" feature allows you to directly convert between these file systems, keeping all files safe and sound.

Final words

If you are looking for FAT32 format tools, this passage shares the top 4 best free FAT32 formatting tools for you. With AOMEI Partition Assistant, you can easily format a drive to FAT32 no matter whether it exceeds the 32GB limitation.

Besides drive format function, you can also use it to allocate free space for increasing space, migrate OS to SSD to improve performance, and convert system disk between MBR/GPT to meet Windows 11 upgrading requirements. Windows Server users can choose the Server Edition to enjoy the benefits.

Irene · Staff Editor
Irene is an Editor of AOMEI Technology. She devotes herself in giving insightful thoughts on common computer problems with simple and clear guidance. Irene loves to help people solve problems and explore more solutions on relevant issues. She loves reading, singing and travelling.