Dave Plummer, a former Microsoft developer, has shared the story behind the Format drive dialog box in Windows, which has remained unchanged for nearly three decades. According to Plummer, the dialog box was created as a temporary solution during the porting of code from Windows 95 to Windows NT, due to differences between the two operating systems. Plummer jotted down all the formatting options on a piece of paper and created a basic UI, intending it to be a placeholder until a more refined version could be developed. However, the intended UI improvement never materialized, and Plummer’s temporary solution has persisted through numerous Windows versions, including the latest Windows 11.

Plummer also admitted that the 32GB limit on FAT volume size in Windows was an arbitrary decision he made at the time, which has since become a permanent constraint.

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