The Windows® NTFS disk filing system was first introduced in 1993, but despite its undoubted sophistication, not everyone is convinced that it is perfectly tuned for all possible eventualities. Prompting Dr. Fanglu Guo and Dr. Tzi-cker Chiueh from Symantec Research. Laboratories, Culver City, USA to develop their DAFT disk operating system. A comprehensive description of DAFT [Disk geometry-Aware File system Traversal] (a novel algorithmic suite designed to improve the read efficiency of bulk file accesses) is published in the eccentrically titled  ‘Modeling, Analysis&Simulation of Computer and Telecommunication Systems, 2009. MASCOTS ’09. IEEE International Symposium on’.

"This paper describes the design, implementation, and evaluation of an optimization to modern file systems that is designed to improve the read efficiency of bulk file accesses. The resulting scheme, called DAFT (Disk geometry-Aware File system Traversal), provides a bulk file access application with individual files while fetching these files into memory in a way that respects the disk geometry and thus is as
efficient as it can be."

But is DAFT better than NTFS?

“It can reduce the elapsed time of enumerating all files in a file system by a factor of 5 to 15 for both fragmented and non-fragmented file systems on fast and slow disks.” say the developers.

Those interested in the fine-grained details of DAFT’s data-driven filing techniques can access the paper in full here: