Ext4 stands for fourth extended file system.
It was introduced in 2008.
Starting from Linux Kernel 2.6.19 ext4 was available.
Supports huge individual file size and overall file system size.
Maximum individual file size can be from 16 GB to 16 TB
Overall maximum ext4 file system size is 1 EB (exabyte). 1 EB = 1024 PB (petabyte). 1 PB = 1024 TB (terabyte).
Directory can contain a maximum of 64,000 subdirectories (as opposed to 32,000 in ext3)
You can also mount an existing ext3 fs as ext4 fs (without having to upgrade it).
Several other new features are introduced in ext4: multiblock allocation, delayed allocation, journal checksum. fast fsck, etc. All you need to know is that these new features have improved the performance and reliability of the filesystem when compared to ext3.
In ext4, you also have the option of turning the journaling feature “off”.