Author Topic: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel  (Read 7938 times)

Martin Iturbide

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Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« on: October 01, 2019, 10:56:30 pm »
Here it is an interesting article:

Quote
Today, however, Microsoft announced that it is supporting the addition of exFAT to the Linux kernel and publishing the technical specifications for exFAT.

Quote
In addition to wanting it to become part of the Linux kernel, Microsoft also says that it hopes that the exFAT specs will become part of the Open Invention Network’s  Linux definition.

If this is actually true and not a trick, it may solve our issue on why the FAT32 project got forked by Arca Noae. Since the FAT32 project (Netlabs / Valerius) included exFAT support, AN didn't want any reference to it because of the risk on getting sue by Microsoft.  Now it may change, let's see how things evolve on this subject.

References
- https://techcrunch.com/2019/08/28/microsoft-wants-to-bring-exfat-to-the-linux-kernel/
- https://venturebeat.com/2019/08/28/microsoft-wants-its-exfat-file-system-in-the-linux-kernel/
- https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/win32/fileio/exfat-specification

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Paul Smedley

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2019, 11:33:45 am »
Should be part of linux kernel 5.4 - due before the end of the year... https://itsfoss.com/linux-kernel-5-4/

ivan

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2019, 03:07:25 pm »
I can't help wondering if this is the 'extend' phase of Microsoft's takeover strategy that always ends with 'extinguish'.  After all Ms has been very well known for its 'Embrace', 'Extend', 'Extinguish' strategy although the US DoJ called it 'embrace, extend, exterminate'.

Lars

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2019, 03:31:16 pm »
Here it is an interesting article:

Quote
Today, however, Microsoft announced that it is supporting the addition of exFAT to the Linux kernel and publishing the technical specifications for exFAT.

Quote
In addition to wanting it to become part of the Linux kernel, Microsoft also says that it hopes that the exFAT specs will become part of the Open Invention Network’s  Linux definition.

If this is actually true and not a trick, it may solve our issue on why the FAT32 project got forked by Arca Noae. Since the FAT32 project (Netlabs / Valerius) included exFAT support, AN didn't want any reference to it because of the risk on getting sue by Microsoft.  Now it may change, let's see how things evolve on this subject.

References
- https://techcrunch.com/2019/08/28/microsoft-wants-to-bring-exfat-to-the-linux-kernel/
- https://venturebeat.com/2019/08/28/microsoft-wants-its-exfat-file-system-in-the-linux-kernel/
- https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/win32/fileio/exfat-specification

So how is this to be interpreted:
https://venturebeat.com/2019/08/28/microsoft-wants-its-exfat-file-system-in-the-linux-kernel/

</quote>
To be clear, Microsoft isn’t open-sourcing exFAT — but it is making sure anyone building with Linux can use it. “It’s important to us that the Linux community can make use of exFAT included in the Linux kernel with confidence.”
<quote>

Martin Iturbide

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2019, 04:32:27 pm »
Hi

I understand that MS can even open source exFAT source code under GNU GPL V2, but can still reserve the right of the patent to sue everyone that uses it. But it will depend on the conditions on how they give away the specification to the Linux community. If the conditions apply to every open source software, it will be good for us.

According to the article post by Lars it only applies to the Linux Kernel, which means BSD, OS/2 and other OSes not based in the Linux kernel may have a risk of getting sue. (and there is always a risk)

Here it is ZDNet article: https://www.zdnet.com/article/microsoft-readies-exfat-patents-for-linux-and-open-source/

I would really like to check the conditions of the "Open Invention Network (OIN)". Maybe if AN will turn a member of the OIN will reduce the risk of getting sue. But I don't like that the OIN page says "OIN's mission is to enable Linux", I would prefer to "enable open source"  ;D

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Martin Iturbide

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2019, 05:12:04 pm »
From: https://www.openinventionnetwork.com/about-us/fact-sheet/

Quote
MISSION:

We enable freedom of action for Open Invention Network community members and users of Linux/OSS-based technology through our patent non-aggression cross-license in the Linux System, which defines the commitment.

We will continue to grow our worldwide membership and the Linux System over time, thereby strengthening our patent non-aggression coverage through the power of the network effect.

???
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ivan

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2019, 05:57:57 pm »
It would appear that Ms is trying to take over Linux.  It has started by incorporating part of Linux into Win 10 and once everyone is happy about that the trouble will begin - don't forget that Ms claims that both Linux and Android uses some of its patented material and is extorting $$$ from Android phone manufacturers on the strength of that.

I don't see Microsoft changing its ways any time soon especially when people are turning away from Win 10 in favour of Linux.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2019, 06:48:52 pm »
Hi

On the other side, it seems interesting joining the OIN. (You don't need to have any patents)
https://www.openinventionnetwork.com/joining-oin/

Specially for all the patents that the organization has.

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Martin Iturbide
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Lars

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2019, 09:05:31 am »
This also centers around Linux but nothing else.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2020, 09:15:22 pm »

Here is a news post about it:

The exFAT filesystem is coming to Linux—Paragon software’s not happy about it
https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2020/03/the-exfat-filesystem-is-coming-to-linux-paragon-softwares-not-happy-about-it

There are no real examples of companies suing companies, only fear.

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Sean Casey

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2020, 01:32:38 am »
I'm with Ivan.  MS has a long history of unethical and hostile business practices. 

I can't forget Microsoft providing $40+ million to SCO at the time SCO was trying to extort money from companies that used Linux.   Had IBM not embraced Linux, I'm sure Microsoft would have directly attacked the legitimacy of Linux rather than using SCO as a proxy. 
« Last Edit: March 31, 2020, 01:36:29 am by Sean Casey »

Rita Richason

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2020, 05:53:13 pm »
So, SD card format will be available for linux (after it has been available for Mac for decades).
How is this a bad thing? Paragon is an old company  that is used to getting paid for their projects. Paying developers is an old custom. Of course they are a little concerned. Historically, they have been a DOS company.

I think there is a lot of alarm over nothing and the article has no real information. A lot of hate for Microsoft.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 06:12:28 pm by Rita Richason »

Rita Richason

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2020, 08:14:11 pm »
don't forget that Ms claims that both Linux and Android uses some of its patented material and is extorting $$$ from Android phone manufacturers on the strength of that.

Any proof of this? Oracle owns Java, not Microsoft. Windows Phone/Surface apps are programmed in C# and not Java. I don't think MS would want to waste their time with Android or Oracle.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 08:24:56 pm by Rita Richason »

ivan

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2020, 08:37:08 pm »
Simple just put microsoft patents in android into the duckduckgo search box and you end up with such things as
https://www.forbes.com/sites/ewanspence/2015/11/01/microsoft-android-patent-income/
and
https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/06/chinese-govt-reveals-microsofts-secret-list-of-android-killer-patents/
and so on.

If you had been following the SCO v Linux case a few years ago and watched when MS stepped in you would/should be well aware of this.

Martin Iturbide

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Re: Microsoft wants its exFAT file system in the Linux kernel
« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2020, 08:47:24 pm »
Hi Rich

Maybe I can agreed that Microsoft has changed from his 90's "Art of War" salesman training, but it is important to don't go blindly trusting them.

don't forget that Ms claims that both Linux and Android uses some of its patented material and is extorting $$$ from Android phone manufacturers on the strength of that.

Any proof of this? Oracle owns Java, not Microsoft. Windows Phone/Surface apps are programmed in C# and not Java. I don't think MS would want to waste their time with Android or Oracle.

Microsoft did a suing rampage against Android vendors on 2011. (sample). Microsoft claimed that some Linux components on Android violated their software patents.
Quote
(U.S. Patent No 5,778,372 (the “’372 patent”), U.S. Patent No. 6,339,780 (the “’780 patent”), U.S. Patent No. 5,889,522 (the “’522 patent”), U.S. Patent No. 6,891,551 (the “’551 patent”), and U.S. Patent  No. 6,957,233 (the “’233 patent”)
. That was the moment Microsoft took off the patent nukes to try slow down Linux and Android.

It was a cheap move, because instead of going for the Android maker (Google), Microsoft went over to the companies bundling Android with their hardware. Google was too big for them and have enough money to go to trial and invalidate MS patents. Of course that MS did not wanted to go to trial, only squeeze the most money they can negotiating with a settle up.

ExFAT
Microsoft owns the patents of that. There is a risk of getting sue using exFAT on your device if your company starts making money even if they say it is available for free. Remember that sometimes it does not mean that Microsoft wants to take you to court for you to confess your sins, they will sue you to get a settlement and money, that will possible be cheaper to you (and yrou company) than going to court

There is the "openinventionnetwork group that will supposedly protect you against patent claims. But we have to remember that if some member of that group will feel it will make more money suing you, they will do it. Even that I recommend DFSee and Arca Noae joining that group, it will not be a warranty that you will not get sued for software patents.

This is my personal opinion, but people that runs companies are free to take the risks they want to.

Regards
« Last Edit: May 28, 2020, 08:51:13 pm by Martin Iturbide »
Martin Iturbide
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