I agree with everything you say except format to NTFS should not destroy any data, but it sure doesn't hurt to back it up first either.The only drawback to NTFS on an external drive is if you use it as a media drive that other devices can read such as a USB/Divx/DVD player, it will only be able to read FAT32 formatted drives. Or if you also want to use the drive on a Mac or on pre XP operating systems, FAT32 is easily recognized for reading and writing while NTFS is not.
Formatting to NTFS is destructive to any data on the disk being formatted.
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