Format Program

What Does Format Program Mean?

A format program is a type of software that prepares a disk for reading and writing data on a system. A format program is responsible for wiping out all logged information from the disk, performing checks to make sure the disk sections are not faulty, assigning flags to bad sectors, and creating internal tables that are later used for the location of addressable data.


Techopedia Explains Format Program

A disk must be formatted before it can be used. A format program performs all the necessary tasks before a disk can be used for the purpose of storing, reading and writing data. It is important to know the difference between high-level and low-level formatting. A format program is responsible for only high-level formatting of the disk, because in most cases disks are already low-level formatted. High-level formatting changes the address table and checks for errors in memory addressing and location without the underlying details such as physical tracks and storing sector identification in them.


Related Terms

Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.