Update: using the phrase '4k sector hard drive manager' is not actually right, to be more specif, '4k cluster hard drive manager' will be better, since 'sector' is hardware-level, it's not changable, it is static after being created/made; 'cluster' is chanagable, it's kinda software-level.
512b sector hard drive has a long history; it was the format standard in last century, but with the growth of pc industry and hard disk production, data capacity requires more in sector level, especially when large file data need to be stored. Decades ago, 512b sector works well in small file data storage, which is now still the best. But not that best when dealing with large data, on the country, a lot of space wasted based on the noncontinuous storage theory. Thus, 4096b sector comes into being, also known as 4k sector, which is 8 times of the very old ones. It's not simply enlarges the capacity but make full use of each sector. you can find detailed explanation from Microsoft
Advanced Format, also known as 4k advanced Format, which rules current sector size of 512 bytes migrate to 4096 bytes (4k), this change improves format efficiency and makes HDD contribute bigger capacity, meanwhile, it improved error correction function. Hard disk with 1T or 3T capacity must use 4k advanced format standard in single disc
You can click on the partition and use the function View Properties, in the Cluster size row, it shows “4k”, on the screenshot, yours may be different
In Partition Expert we can click on an unallocated space and do the followings to create a 4k cluster partition:
4kfrom the Cluster size section (it’s also the default setting)
I’m currently using the 512b partition, how can I format it to 4k
In Partition Expert, we can format it like this:
4kfrom the drop-down menu
Note: Format will delete everything on the disk, please make sure you have a backup of important data, Partition Expert will also pop-up a warning message before proceed
Currently and for in most of the cases, Yes
Windows 10 is using 4k cluster as the default setting when you format and create a volume, but there are other options available, many options are larger than 4k, the best option is the one suits your need.
On the Server side, for example, large data analyzing company would choose larger cluster to store data, which brings higher efficiency and better performance for both Server side and Client side.
In Windows 10 and Server 2012 and above, we have more options on cluster size
There are many hardware providers have released their 4k hard drives in recent years, but few apps know how to run 4k hard drives, much software in this field are not appear synchronously. Macrorit Partition Expert, is the manager of 4k hard drive
Macrorit Partition Expert has SSD 4k alignment options when create new volume; actually, 4k alignment is one of our alignments among 512b, 1k, 2k, 4k, 8k, 16k, 32k, 64k alignment. Run our manager, right click on the target partition to see Sector Size