Samsung Properly Open-Sources exFAT File-System
Written by Michael Larabel in Free Software on 16 August 2013 at 10:43 AM EDT. 42 Comments
Back in June, Phoronix was the first to report of a native exFAT file-system implementation for Linux that appeared on GitHub. It later turned out that Samsung accidentally leaked their exFAT source code. The solution has now been corrected with Samsung formally open-sourcing their exFAT source code.

The exFAT driver talked about in June was modified from an accidental Samsung source code leak that the independent developer found on GitHub. It was a confusing situation and he removed references to the original Samsung source code and it led to a confusing situation in the weeks that followed with tons of comments in the forums.

While Samsung accidentally put out the source code in the first place, they have now formally released the code under the GPL after it was discovered they violated the GPL in the first place. Samsung was shipping this closed-source exFAT driver on a tablet yet they were relying upon GPL-only symbols.

The Software Freedom Conservancy is now reported today, "Conservancy's GPL Compliance Project for Linux Developers is pleased to announce its role in assisting Samsung in a recent public compliance issue. The compliance issue was brought to Conservancy's attention when source code of an exFAT filesystem driver for Linux was unintentionally released via GitHub, and Conservancy later determined that similar code appeared in binary form only (thus violating GPLv2ยง3) in a Samsung Linux-based tablet. Samsung has made a source release available on their Open Source Release Center website."

The official Samsung exFAT source code can be downloaded from their open-source web-site.
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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 Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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