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Microsoft releases exFAT, storm clouds gather over alternative OS's

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Trombe

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Mar 13, 2005
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Austin, Texas
http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/ne...tm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=rss

the software giant is charging a flat $300,000 license fee, while companies that want to use the format in devices such as phones, PCs, and networks will have to pay a volume-based license fee.

What does this mean for GNU/Linux?

On the server side (where these OS's already excel) not much.

On the desktop side, which is still struggling to push above 2% of the market, this is actually pretty bad news. Common consumer devices that use flash memory cards are very likely to move to this new file format, which MS is charging quite a bit of money (for FOSS organizations) to use.
 

curtis1552

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Aug 26, 2007
Location
Dayton, Ohio
Well, there appears to be some hope:
An experimental, open source Linux kernel module that supports the reading of exFAT files is currently under development [5]. A closed source, read/write Linux driver, licensed and derived from the Microsoft exFAT driver, is available for purchase from Tuxera[6].
While this is from Wikipedia they are referenced.
Worst case, you'll have to delete the stuff using the camera.
Hopefully they'll stick to fat32 for a while longer.
 

Niku-Sama

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Jan 13, 2005
well considering fat has just been a problem in terms of formatting...i wouldnt worry too much.
 

Edward78

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Apr 20, 2005
Big deal, all I really use FAT for is so my linux os & winblows can save files to my download petition. I could just get a ext2 windows driver so I can make it a ext2 petition. Plus, for phones & other devices they could just say "skrew you MS" & go to another FS. So is NTFS going away? If not they need to update it so it doesn't fragment when it is read.
 
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johnz

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May 30, 2004
I'm not sure of all the ramifications, but it could be a little problematic. AFAIK reading an xFAT partition doesn't require licensing, so if somebody developed a reader it would take care of that issue. Not being able to create one, and utilize it's benefits would give Linux users a sub optimal experience compared to Windows users unless they bought a license to use xFAT.

It's not the end of the world, but it makes the Linux choice not as good as Windows in this instance.
 
OP
Trombe

Trombe

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petteyg359

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Jul 31, 2004

Even if it is adopted as the "standard", many devices still don't support SDHC, so I don't think those device manufacturers that didn't care when SDHC was released are going to be hugely excited about a new standard that they have to pay many hundreds of thousands of dollars to use. "Standards" are great, but it will be DOA for practical purposes, I think, unless M$ drops the ridiculous license fee.
 

shadin

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Jan 15, 2006
I don't think it's going to affect much. Standards that cost hundreds of thousands only become standards when there isn't anything out there to compete with them. Inevitably many companies will cheap out, meaning that compatibility will have to be maintained and multiple formats supported.
 

curtis1552

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Even if it is adopted as the "standard", many devices still don't support SDHC, so I don't think those device manufacturers that didn't care when SDHC was released are going to be hugely excited about a new standard that they have to pay many hundreds of thousands of dollars to use. "Standards" are great, but it will be DOA for practical purposes, I think, unless M$ drops the ridiculous license fee.
I thought SD and SDHC was more to do with hardware, relating to the speed at which data was written to the device and the maximum capacity for that type of card. Whereas fat32 and exfat are purely software changes relating to the filesystem, you could just as easily put ext2/3/4, xfs, reiserfs, reiser4, or any ofhte other filesystems on a SD card. But if the reader/camera/etc isn't SDHC compatible it won't work on a SDHC card no matter what.
 

petteyg359

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Jul 31, 2004
I thought SD and SDHC was more to do with hardware, relating to the speed at which data was written to the device and the maximum capacity for that type of card. Whereas fat32 and exfat are purely software changes relating to the filesystem, you could just as easily put ext2/3/4, xfs, reiserfs, reiser4, or any ofhte other filesystems on a SD card. But if the reader/camera/etc isn't SDHC compatible it won't work on a SDHC card no matter what.

SDXC is a hardware standard. The filesystem specified in the standard is exFAT. See SDXC - SD Card Association.