Paragon Publishes Latest NTFS File-System Patches For Linux

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Storage on 26 December 2020 at 09:41 AM EST. 12 Comments
One of the pleasant kernel surprises in 2020 was Paragon Software looking to upstream their previously commercial NTFS driver. This driver offers read-write support and more advanced capabilities than the current read-focused NTFS driver presently in the mainline kernel and better off than the other FUSE-based driver. This driver hasn't been mainlined yet but Paragon published new patches on Christmas.

On Christmas came the 16th spin of these patches for offering the NTFS read-write GPL-licensed driver from Paragon Software. Since publishing the initial code in August, Paragon Software has regularly been pushing out new updates to fill in missing functionality and address developer feedback.

With the v16 patches, the LZX/Xpress compression types are adapted from the NTFS-3G plug-in code, mutexes are now used for each compression type rather than a global spinlock, implementing hole punch and collapse range bits, and decompression support for the NTFS system handling.

These newest NTFS Linux patches can be found via the kernel mailing list.

The Linux 5.11 merge window is closing this weekend and the patches were not submitted as a pull request and no developer feedback yet on this v16 spin. Thus it looks like the new NTFS driver will be waiting until at least Linux 5.12 until mainlining. Especially with needing to ensure its reliability exceeds that of the existing and basic NTFS kernel driver if wanting to outright replace that code (or otherwise having to expose a Kconfig switch for selecting between two different NTFS drivers), the upstream developers are not in a hurry to merge it.
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