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Microsoft Publishes exFAT Specification, Encourages Linux Support

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  • #21
    Originally posted by moriel5 View Post
    I have a question, since I had read throughout the years that ExFAT is unreliable (also on Windows), how reliable is it when compared to FAT32?
    I.e., would I have to worry any more about the partition becoming unusable when on ExFAT vs. FAT32?
    Has FAT32 been unstable for you? Generally, you shouldn't be using FAT32 for pretty much any modern drives. It isn't optimized for SSDs and if you want broad compatibility, you shouldn't use anything larger than a 2TB drive.

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    • #22
      Originally posted by ssokolow View Post

      This. It would be so nice to pair it with DOSBox as a way to get companies like GOG.com to license and re-release Win16 classics like Lode Runner: The Legend Returns.
      That exists already... it is winevdm, a wine-like program for Win16 apps.
      https://github.com/otya128/winevdm/releases
      https://ci.appveyor.com/project/otya...uild/artifacts
      It has to be run in a windows x64, though.

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      • #23
        Fuck off Microsoft, we don't need your crap

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        • #24
          Originally posted by schmidtbag View Post
          Has FAT32 been unstable for you? Generally, you shouldn't be using FAT32 for pretty much any modern drives. It isn't optimized for SSDs and if you want broad compatibility, you shouldn't use anything larger than a 2TB drive.
          No issues for me on FAT32, however I only use it on flash drives, thus making the largest drive that I use it on being 64GB flash drives.
          I use EXT4 for the OS on Linux (exception: when on UEFI, which is only on 2 devices which are UEFI-only (one also has an Android bootloader) there is a FAT32 boot partition, though as I had not yet properly learned how UEFI works, I still have not begun tinkering with this, nor have I moved the other computers to UEFI), regardless of boot media, and NTFS for the rest (no MacOS yet, and even when there will be, it will be relegated to experimentation so as to assist me when troubleshooting other peoples' Macs (and hackintoshes).

          My largest drives are only 1TB (budget constraints), and even then, the current status would apply to them.
          I am intrigued by the fact that ExFAT is faster than FAT32, and so I would like to know whether I could trust it (once it is in the Linux kernel) on future flash drives (64GB+, perhaps also on 8-32GB, though I will still need FAT32 for firmware updating on old computers).
          Last edited by moriel5; 08-29-2019, 08:25 AM.

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          • #25
            Originally posted by You- View Post
            ExFAT has been out over 10 years and any patents will already be near expiry.
            No. Many will expire somewhere after 2025.

            Originally posted by You- View Post
            The blog also states that they are looking to have the patents covered by the OIN (though not done so yet).
            1. You have to join the OIN to get access to the patents, and are forced to cross-license all your patents related to the "Linux System definition" to all others for free after you join. Wait, why can't Linus just merge an in-kernel exFAT driver into mainline Linux then and Microsoft has to automatically give all other OIN members free exFAT patent licenses? Why does Microsoft even have to "look into" having these patents covered by the OIN? Because they farmed out all their valuable patents to patent trolls like Intellectual Ventures. Microsoft didn't bring a single usable patent to the table when they joined the OIN in 2018. It was a worthless PR exercise, just like every time when they "Love Linux".

            2. OIN only covers Linux-based operating systems, nothing else. Lots of devices which have to use exFAT (e.g. because they have to support SDXC cards) don't run Linux. *BSDs, ReactOS, etc. are also not covered.

            3. Turns out many of the companies which get ripped off the most by Microsoft - device manufacturers like Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi etc. - have not joined the OIN. Even some GNU/Linux distribution projects like Debian or Arch are not OIN members.

            4. Most of the companies which have joined the OIN and also need exFAT in their Linux devices probably already have paid Microsoft for these patents at some point in time.

            So even if Microsoft really ended up giving the other OIN members free access to all patents relating to exFAT it probably wouldn't hurt their revenue stream much. They even get more free marketing and more good karma just for looking into things, while this puts even more pressure on device manufacturers to support exFAT on even more devices.

            That's why Microsoft is doing it. This was never about Linux or even love for Linux. Satya Nadella is just WAY better at making money than Ballmer will ever be.

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            • #26
              *violently ejaculates*

              Uh...I wasn't expecting this.

              Getting a reference-grade exFAT implementation into the kernel will be a tremendous step forward for getting Linux into shape for "regular" users to employ in place of Windows, on older OEM PCs that can't be upgraded to Windows 10, and it will also be a big benefit to the people who want to use Linux for content creation purposes, as exFAT is the FS used by all current audio, video, and image recording devices.

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              • #27
                I have to see which will be the license they will use to open this filesystem, so far sounds like another blob into the mainline kernel. I really don't trust M$ and I always thought that most of the M$ backdoors lie on theirs filesystems.

                Loving Linux doesn't mean loving Linux users too...
                Last edited by Danielsan; 08-28-2019, 04:29 PM.

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                • #28
                  Originally posted by q2dg View Post
                  Fuck off Microsoft, we don't need your crap
                  Average Joe with his 64GB exFAT-formatted microSD disagrees.
                  Video production studios disagree too.

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                  • #29
                    Originally posted by tildearrow View Post

                    This, and especially ext4 (or even XFS as I work with it in my external hard drives). I would like to access my Linux partition from Windows because every time I try to access my Windows partition from Linux to copy some stuff, I seem unable to override the read protection. This means, to copy a file from Linux to Windows, I have to do the following:
                    - Boot into Linux
                    - Copy the file to my server
                    - Boot into Windows
                    - Copy the file from my server

                    If ext4 were to be supported under Windows, I would just have to do this:
                    - Boot into Windows
                    - Copy the file from my Linux partition within Windows

                    Yeah, I know there is ext2fsd but it doesn't seem right, and I have been failing to get it to work lately.
                    Lifehack: Virtualbox with a minimal Linux distro on Windows with an additional disk which points to the RAW drive. This way you can access your Linux partitions and share them via SMB to Windows.
                    Last edited by holunder; 08-28-2019, 05:13 PM.

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                    • #30
                      Originally posted by holunder View Post

                      Lifehack: Virtualbox with a minimal Linux distro on Windows with an additional disk which points to the RAW drive. This way you can access your Linux partitions and share them via SMB to Windows.
                      What if Linux is in the same drive as the Windows one? (which is the case for my laptop) Is this still viable?

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