New Commodore 64 is Finally Here--For Real! PC MAG Snip

Chuck Guzis cclist at
Fri Jan 1 14:57:10 CST 2016

On 01/01/2016 12:36 PM, Fred Cisin wrote:

> While, at the time, 2G seemed "infinite", even then, I was amused at
> the 2G limitation being due to the use of a SIGNED 32 bit number.
> The size can be anywhere from -2147483648 to 2147483647. By switching
> to an UNSIGNED 32, NT and the like made the limit 4G.
> I had a few hard drives that were getting crowded, so I stomped on
> DIRectory entries on some floppies and made some files with negative
>  file sizes.  I confirmed empirically that copying a file with a
> negative size to the drive did NOT increase free space.

I was under the impression that, in FAT16, 2GB was still the limit to 
*file* size, but a 4GB *volume* size was okay.   It, as far as I know, 
isn't so much a limitation on 32-bit numbers, but rather the combination 
of the FAT and cluster sizes that dooms it.

What's funny is that in the old pre MS-DOS 3.3 days, one of the ways to 
trick DOS into supporting larger volumes was to increase the (apparent) 
sector size with code to block up 512 byte sectors into larger (1024, 
2048, etc.) apparent ones--and a few DOS patches.


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