Everyone seen this?

Abzstrak

Platinum Member
Mar 11, 2000
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http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=03/12/04/1318212&mode=thread&tid=109&tid=155&tid=187&tid=99

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I particularly like how at the bottom of MS's page it states:

"In addition, the FAT file system licensing package includes rights to FAT file system innovations for which Microsoft has filed a claim for a patent that the U.S. Patent Office has not yet granted."

Sounds like their planning on going after companies that have already used FAT or whatever they consider to be based on "FAT file system innovations"
 

blcjr

Golden Member
Oct 28, 1999
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Well, the only correct answer to the question posted in the subject header is "No."

But some of us have. I think /. must be hard up for news. $0.25 per device. What's the big deal?

Commenters on /. speculate that this will drive manufacturers to an open source file system. not if it is not supported on Windows, it won't. More interesting, perhaps, is whether there anything to stop the development of an open source tool to format devices in FAT.

You know, floppies come preformatted with FAT. Has MS been charging the producers of floppies for the right to preformat them? If not, I wonder if that could be used to impede the attempt to impose a charge on preformating devices with FAT.
 

Nothinman

Elite Member
Sep 14, 2001
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$0.25 per device. What's the big deal?

Considering most cameras, usb sticks, mp3 players, etc all use (V)FAT it could be a lot of money. If MS had done this months before I bet Apple would reconsidered their plans for a Windows compatible iPod.
 

CTho9305

Elite Member
Jul 26, 2000
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Originally posted by: Nothinman
$0.25 per device. What's the big deal?

Considering most cameras, usb sticks, mp3 players, etc all use (V)FAT it could be a lot of money. If MS had done this months before I bet Apple would reconsidered their plans for a Windows compatible iPod.

They have a max fee of $250k per manufacturer.... though it still adds up.
 

Spyro

Diamond Member
Dec 4, 2001
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I think that this comment is very insightful on the subject:
As I read the license options, this applies only to devices that come pre-formatted as FAT. No mention of software. Limiting the ability of others to write FAT-compatible software would be a bad strategic move on MS's part - anyone who currently has another OS interoperating with Windows via FAT may be just as likely to ditch Windows as they are the "other" OS.

If this is right then I think that this can be considered a non issue for non-microsoft OSs. The only companies that would have to worry about this are the hardware manufacturers that preformat all their stuff as (v)fat. I suppose that this might cause some of them to switch to something like ext2, which would make my life as a Zaurus owner much easier.