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posted by Fnord666 on Thursday March 26 2020, @12:42PM   Printer-friendly
from the better-late-than-never dept.

The exFAT filesystem is coming to Linux:

When software and operating system giant Microsoft announced its support for inclusion of the exFAT filesystem directly into the Linux kernel back in August, it didn't get a ton of press coverage. But filesystem vendor Paragon Software clearly noticed this month's merge of the Microsoft-approved, largely Samsung-authored version of exFAT into the VFS for-next repository, which will in turn merge into Linux 5.7—and Paragon doesn't seem happy about it.

Yesterday, Paragon issued a press release about European gateway-modem vendor Sagemcom adopting its version of exFAT into an upcoming series of Linux-based routers. Unfortunately, it chose to preface the announcement with a stream of FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt) that wouldn't have looked out of place on Steve Ballmer's letterhead in the 1990s.

Paragon described its arguments against open source software—which appeared directly in my inbox—as an "article (available for publication in any form) explaining why the open source model didn't work in 3 cases."

All three of Paragon's offered cases were curious examples, at best.

Case one: Android

Case two: MacOS

Case three: SMB

We congratulate Paragon on closing their timely exFAT deal with Sagemcom. Although there's good reason to believe that the Samsung-derived and Microsoft-approved exFAT implementation in Linux 5.7 will be secure, stable, and highly performant, it's not here yet—and it isn't even in the next upcoming Linux kernel, 5.6, which we expect to hit general availability in late April or early May.


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  • (Score: 2) by canopic jug on Friday March 27 2020, @05:55AM (2 children)

    by canopic jug (3949) Subscriber Badge on Friday March 27 2020, @05:55AM (#976217) Journal

    Thanks, those are interesting and are a clear warning. Both links are so close to showing something, anything, about the patents, but actually don't. It appears very much that M$ GregKH signed off on the patch from Valdis Klētnieks without verifying the patent licensing. The patch seems to be GPL 2.0 and that is a good thing. It also means that the patent situation is addressed unless done so separately, something which the patch has not done.

    The first link, a blog, does not even mention patents. Both link onward to another page entitled, "exFAT file system specification", but that page links to neither the code nor mentions patents. It does have one line vaguely mentioning some unspecified changes to the licensing. However, it is a dead-end and does not link to any M$ code anywhere.

    In addition to the distros, it sets up Android for a big fall. It'll be using that tainted kernel soon. Assuming that M$ would go after the manufacturers instead of the individual users, that would make expensive trouble for Samsung and the other phone makers, but not Google/Alphabet. They'd just use an attack from M$ over the patents as an excuse to drop Android lock a hot potato and roll out Fuchsia as a full replacement.

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 27 2020, @08:12PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 27 2020, @08:12PM (#976433)

    That commit was signed off by "Sasha Levin" . As an agent of Microsoft with apparent authority to authorize commits to the Linux tree coupled with Microsoft having agreed to the OIN License, granted access under provisions 1.2 of the agreement, among others, to all other licensees of the OIN by allowing such a commit to the Linux kernel under the GPL 2 without objection.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 28 2020, @01:06PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 28 2020, @01:06PM (#976616)

    >They'd just use an attack from M$ over the patents as an excuse to drop Android lock a hot potato and roll out Fuchsia as a full replacement.
    Actually, google stopping to churn out versions would be a good thing for Android...