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An Open-Source exFAT Implementation Reaches v1.0

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  • #11
    To avoid having to license it, you could always ship your product without the exFAT driver installed, and prompt the user to automatically download and install the GLPed driver whenever an exFAT formated device is connected. Requiring end user intervention to download the driver, I believe you can circumvent all patent issues.

    Anyway, the good thing about this free driver is that if someone ships the product with the GPL exFAT code, he cannot negotiate with Microsoft any licensing that involves "per device licenses", even if he wanted to, as the GPL prohibits it. This means that the license could not cover the only the defendant but everyone in the free software community whose products are derived from that GPL.
    Last edited by newwen; 01-21-2013, 07:52 AM.

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    • #12
      Originally posted by TheBlackCat View Post
      exfat and vfat are pretty much completely unrelated besides the name and the fact they were both developed by microsoft. The memory cards up to 32gb are required to use vfat, but above that (64gb+) they, and devices that read them, are only required to support exfat (they can have vfat, but there is no guarantee that devices will support it).
      Then I will consider myself educated on the subject now, and thank you for it. However, I was pointing out to uid313 that the use of exfat at least is very widespread today.

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      • #13
        Originally posted by Redi44 View Post
        Still it looks like the best format if you want to move data between OS X, Win and Linux....
        If you had ever heard of UDF, you wouldn't say that.

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        • #14
          Originally posted by Awesomeness View Post
          If you had ever heard of UDF, you wouldn't say that.
          Even NTFS is better than exfat.
          Support on all windows systems for the past 12 (?) years or more without patches that may or not be installed, read-only part of the linux kernel (and others), every decent distro ships ntfs-3g for full rw support, OSX can read it too, write support is in there somewhere but disabled by default, and it can also use ntfs-3g.

          So really, why bother with exfat, if you can avoid it. Microsoft had a real chance to promote interoperability, and they decided against it. Again.

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          • #15
            Originally posted by Awesomeness View Post
            If you had ever heard of UDF, you wouldn't say that.
            Indeed, I was just about to say the same. UDF has a "hard disk" mode, and it has features nearing what NTFS has. Plus it's supported by pretty much every operating system and its version (although only old UDF formats on WinXP and older - but they can still read the data).

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            • #16
              Originally posted by Redi44 View Post
              Still it looks like the best format if you want to move data between OS X, Win and Linux....
              No, that's UDF <=2.01

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              • #17
                Originally posted by GreatEmerald View Post
                UDF has a "hard disk" mode, and it has features nearing what NTFS has.
                What it doesn't have is being allowed to install inside a partition. UDF spec requires that the filesystem occupies the entire storage medium. But in practice, the operating systems ignore this restriction.

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                • #18
                  Originally posted by TheBlackCat View Post
                  exfat and vfat are pretty much completely unrelated besides the name and the fact they were both developed by microsoft. The memory cards up to 32gb are required to use vfat, but above that (64gb+) they, and devices that read them, are only required to support exfat (they can have vfat, but there is no guarantee that devices will support it).
                  Any non-specialized device you can find that uses exFAT also fully supports the older FAT16/FAT32 filesystem by design and memory cards above 32GB are NOT required to use exFAT. You can format a 64GB SDXC card with FAT32 - not using Windows built-in format utility - and use it in any DSLR or digital camera without any problems as FAT32 works fine with all high-capacity flash memory media in existence today. All DSLRs use FAT32 for Compact Flash cards, even the 64 and 128GB ones. exFAT is not mandatory for any devices or flash memory cards, it is simply used as the default filesystem for many digital devices because it supports large file sizes above 4GB, which really isn't useful outside of A/V recording.

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                  • #19
                    Originally posted by chithanh View Post
                    What it doesn't have is being allowed to install inside a partition. UDF spec requires that the filesystem occupies the entire storage medium. But in practice, the operating systems ignore this restriction.
                    Not that you need partitions on a typical USB drive, anyway.

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                    • #20
                      Originally posted by newwen View Post
                      To avoid having to license it, you could always ship your product without the exFAT driver installed, and prompt the user to automatically download and install the GLPed driver whenever an exFAT formated device is connected. Requiring end user intervention to download the driver, I believe you can circumvent all patent issues.

                      Anyway, the good thing about this free driver is that if someone ships the product with the GPL exFAT code, he cannot negotiate with Microsoft any licensing that involves "per device licenses", even if he wanted to, as the GPL prohibits it. This means that the license could not cover the only the defendant but everyone in the free software community whose products are derived from that GPL.
                      Hum, gee, I wonder why nobody's ever thought of that before??? Truly so easy to circumvent all patent issues, all you need to do is build a simple system capable of downloading and installing something from the interwebz rather than shipping it pre-installed, then you can trade around all kinds of stuff, like wondoze, osx, free movies, free music, and free pr0n.

                      Duh... sorry, my friend, that's not how it works.
                      Distribution is distribution is distribution. It makes no difference if you pre-install it, supply physical media, or have people download it from the interwebz. Its still in violation of copyright/patent/etc.

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