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Linux Kernel May Gain VMUFAT File-System Support

Linux Kernel

Published on 21 March 2012 11:56 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Kernel
7 Comments

A patch has been proposed for the Linux kernel to introduce the VMUFAT file-system.

Before getting too excited about another Linux file-system, this isn't a particularly exciting development, unless you happen to still be an user of Sega's Dreamcast video game console and trying to hack it with Linux.

On the Sega Dreamcast there is a Visual Memory Unit, a.k.a. a VMU, which is a micro-controller with a small LCD display and 128K of Flash memory. Sega was expected to offer up larger VMUs beyond 128K of memory, but apparently they never did. VMUFAT is what the Linux developer is calling this file-system to deal with these file allocation table-based volumes.

The Dreamcast has been discontinued for more than a decade now, but the Linux kernel may now see support for Sega VMUs. Aside from dealing with the hardware directly, this support may end up benefiting Linux and Android emulators of the Dreamcast. "I am not sure how many people are still hacking away at Linux on their Dreamcasts, but Linux or Android emulators exist for the Dreamcast and the VMU, so supporting the filesystem has a potential use."

The patch, which is unknown at the moment whether it will be merged into mainline, can currently be found on the kernel mailing list.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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