CP/M file system

From Just Solve the File Format Problem
Jump to: navigation, search
File Format
Name CP/M file system

The CP/M operating system had an associated file system format.

A CP/M file system would typically reside on a floppy disk, or more rarely a hard disk. As such, such filesystems are also likely to reside in disk images these days.

Some salient features of the CP/M filesystem (see also Wikipedia):

  • 8.3 filenames, like (original) DOS
  • No directory hierarchy (unlike DOS filesystems) -- all files are in a single flat namespace
  • However, files are divided into a set of numbered "user areas" (conventionally 0-15)

Most CP/M file systems are not self-describing: the reader is expected to know the parameters defining the location/size of the directory, etc, which were machine-specific. It will thus be helpful to know which hardware a CP/M file system originated on.


  • Michael Haardt's cpmtools (source code for Unix and Win32 executables)
    • This has long been packaged for Debian and Ubuntu Linux, so installing it there is as simple as apt-get install cpmtools


Personal tools