Apple’s iOS 10.3 delivers brand-new Apple File System

“The APFS system was announced last year WWDC. It replaces the now 30-year-old hierarchical filing system (HFS, later updated to HFS+) that, until [yesterday’s release of iOS 10.3], was on your iPhone and iPad, and still remains on your Mac,” David Sparks writes for MacSparky.

“APFS is a much needed modernization, more secure and designed around SSD storage, which didn’t even exist when HFS first showed up,” Sparks writes. “In addition to being more secure, the new system should be faster and more efficient, allowing you to save some space.”

“Following my usual “fire, ready, aim” philosophy about these things, I already updated all of my iOS devices and while the update took a while (converting a file system is never a fast process), everything went just fine and devices are all working just like before,” Sparks writes. “Indeed, I’m writing this post on my updated iPad Pro.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: APFS coming to the Mac in lucky macOS 10.13 this fall (and, hopefully, in public beta as soon as WWDC 2017 in June)? Let’s hope so!

iOS 10.3’s longer than usual installation likely due to switch to new Apple File System – March 28, 2017
Apple releases iOS 10.3, watchOS 3.2, and tvOS 10.2 – March 27, 2017
You must back up your iPhone and iPad before upgrading to Apple’s iOS 10.3, due soon – March 10, 2017
Apple’s iOS 10.3: A very, very important upgrade – January 25, 2017
APFS: What Apple’s new Apple File System means to you – June 24, 2016
APFS: New Apple File System promises more speed, flexibility, reliability – June 17, 2016
The feds’ll hate this: Apple’s new APFS file system ‘engineered with encryption as a primary feature’ – June 14, 2016
Buh-bye HFS+, hello APFS (Apple File System) for macOS! – June 14, 2016
Apple can do better than Sun’s ZFS – October 26, 2009
Apple discontinues ZFS project, turns attention to own next-gen file system – October 24, 2009
Apple’s Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server’s ZFS goes MIA – June 9, 2009


  1. For those on this forum that have been furiously blasting Apple and Tim Cook, this new file system is a *big deal* that took a lot of work and testing. It is not glamorous, but it is a very important update for every Mac and iOS user, including the pro users.

    1. Apple’s HFS+ has been considered one of the worst file systems, well beyond its fresh date. It was an embarrassment when compared to ZFS (Sun), BtrFS (Oracle), HAMMER, or ReFS. Even Microsoft’s old NTFS is considered superior. As the lines have blurred between RAM, flash, and SSD performance, and file syncing between many devices on the fly is the order of the day, you need a file system that has error checking and very efficient file size. HFS+ has neither.

      My question is what took Apple so long? ZFS was stable and ready to implement 5 years ago. Cook just couldn’t cough up the cash, he was more interested in Beats.

      1. The new file system doesn’t have error checking either, much to the consternation of ZFS fans. Allegedly because Apple trusts their storage. However this is nonsense. The reason Apple doesn’t know that their storage drops data is because they don’t run ZFS. So major opportunity lost there.

  2. I updated through iTunes on my Mac. From clicking ‘download’ to finished install and reboot took about 17 minutes on my 64GB iPhone 6. No longer than other updates have taken.

  3. Let’s not praise Tim for being such a great leader here. Apple has less than 30 major hardware sku’s (not considering variable config’s) and yet it’s been YEARS since most of Apple’s hardware has been updated, especially the pro market. Such a FAIL. I wish he wasn’t the CEO and someone who can multi-task as a leader was in that role. Just imagine the revenue Apple has lost with the lack of updates to all their hardware. If I was the CEO I would take 1% of our profit from a year and invest into 50,000 new employees and give them a base of $50,000 a year. (10,000 in the U.S. for manufacturing, 10,000 in China for manufacturing, 10,000 for manufacturing in India, 10,000 for manufacturing in Mexico and another 10,000 in the U.S. to focus on product refreshments and marketing)

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