USB sticks are traditionally formatted with FAT 32, because this file system is implemented by almost every operating system and device. Unfortunately, it sucks, as it cannot use more than 2 TiB, store files larger than 2 GiB or store symbolic links for instance. In a word, it is an obsolete and deficient file system.
Good news: someone addressed that problem. Bad new: that someone is Microsoft. So as you could expect, exFAT, the extended FAT, is a stinking proprietary, secret and patented file system. There are free implementations of that shit, but it is safer to stay away from it.
tar and cpio
tar(5) and cpio(5) are two competing archive formats, that provide almost identical features. Both are streamed formats, originally designed to be used on tapes. Their major practical difference is the style of their standard command line utilities:
cpio(1)takes the list of files to archive on its standard input, allowing a very high control but requiring to use another utility such as
find(1)to archive an entire tree;
tar(1)usually takes the list of file to archive on its command line, and browses directories recursively be default.