Time to do away with Microsoft

dmcowen674

No Lifer
Oct 13, 1999
54,894
46
91
www.alienbabeltech.com
Do you own a Digital Camera? How bout that $30 DVD player that shoppers trampled each other for? Say Good bye to them especially for $30.

Japan's Prime Minister recently told it's Programmers to come up with a National alternative to Microsoft, they certainly have the right idea. They must have gotten an early jump on this since many of the Camera Companies are based in Japan.

12-3-2003 Microsoft starts charging $250,000 for FAT File System

FAT File System Technology and Patent License
December 3, 2003

RELATED RESOURCES
Learn More About the FAT File System

Most operating systems store computer files by dividing the file into smaller pieces and storing those pieces in separate clusters of a hard disk, floppy disk, or flash memory card. The FAT file system allows an operating system to keep track of the location and sequence of each piece of a file, and also allows the operating system to identify which clusters are unassigned and available for new files. When a computer user wants to read a file, the FAT file system also reassembles each piece of the file into one unit for viewing.

The first FAT file system was developed by Microsoft in 1976. That system was based on the BASIC programming language and allowed programs and data to be stored on a floppy disk. Since that time, the FAT file system has been improved upon multiple times to take advantage of advances in computer technology, and to further refine and enrich the FAT file system itself.

Today, the FAT File system has become the ubiquitous format used for interchange of media between computers, and, since the advent of inexpensive, removable flash memory, also between digital devices. The FAT file system is now supported by a wide variety of operating systems running on all sizes of computers, from servers to personal digital assistants. In addition, many digital devices such as still and video cameras, audio recorders, video game systems, scanners, and printers make use of FAT file system technology.

Microsoft is offering to license its FAT file system specification and associated intellectual property. With this license, other companies have the opportunity to standardize the FAT file system implementation in their products, and to improve file system compatibility across a range of computing and consumer electronics devices.

If you are interested in obtaining a license, please contact our Intellectual Property and Licensing Group at fatspec@microsoft.com for more information.

Pricing and Licensing
Microsoft offers a commercially reasonable, nonexclusive license so that other companies can use the FAT file system in their own products. Currently, Microsoft offers two specific types of licenses:

A license for removable solid state media manufacturers to preformat the media, such as compact flash memory cards, to the Microsoft FAT file system format, and to preload data onto such preformatted media using the Microsoft FAT file system format. Pricing for this license is US$0.25 per unit with a cap on total royalties of $250,000 per manufacturer.
A license for manufacturers of certain consumer electronics devices. Pricing for this license is US$0.25 per unit for each of the following types of devices that use removable solid state media to store data: portable digital still cameras; portable digital video cameras; portable digital still/video cameras; portable digital audio players; portable digital video players; portable digital audio/video players; multifunction printers; electronic photo frames; electronic musical instruments; and standard televisions. Pricing for this license is US$0.25 per unit with a cap on total royalties of $250,000 per licensee. Pricing for other device types can be negotiated with Microsoft.
Microsoft's FAT file system license offers limited rights to issued and pending Microsoft patents on FAT file system technology, as well as rights to implement the Microsoft FAT file system specification. In order to ensure interoperability between the licensed media and devices and Microsoft® Windows®-based personal computers and to improve consumer experience, the license requires that licensees' FAT file system implementations in the licensed media and devices be fully compliant with certain required portions of the Microsoft FAT file system specification. To help licensees implement the FAT file system, Microsoft will also provide certain reference source code and test specifications as part of the licensing package in both licenses.

In some cases, companies may wish to negotiate broader or narrower rights than the standard Microsoft license for FAT file systems. In this case, pricing may vary. Microsoft remains flexible to adjust terms to reflect crosslicensing, unit volume, version limitation, geographic scope, and other considerations.

FAT File System?Related Patents
The FAT file system licensing program includes rights to a number of U.S. Patents, including:

U.S. Patent #5,579,517
U.S. Patent #5,745,902
U.S. Patent #5,758,352
U.S. Patent #6,286,013
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. This licensing program also provides licensees rights to Microsoft FAT file system issued and pending patents outside the United States, and to the Microsoft FAT file system specification and certain test specifications.

This document describes the FAT file system specification and intellectual property licensing program as of December, 2003. Microsoft reserves the right to make modifications to the terms and conditions of this licensing program at any time. The licenses presented here do not provide rights beyond those explicitly stated above, including rights to other Microsoft patents, technical know-how or other forms of intellectual property.
 

miguel

Senior member
Nov 2, 2001
621
0
0
A 250k cap seems kinda cheap for a license, if you are manufacturing a product.
 

dirtboy

Diamond Member
Oct 9, 1999
6,745
1
81
Who says the alternative will be more expensive? Looks like the McOwen propaganada machine is running on all cylinders today.
 

Fencer128

Platinum Member
Jun 18, 2001
2,700
1
91
0.25c per unit - max $250,000. They own the patents so I really don't see the problem. I think your link title is a little misleading in that it sounds like everyone has to pay $250,000.

Cheers,

Andy
 

rjain

Golden Member
May 1, 2003
1,475
0
0
It's $0.25 of a $30 product.

I wonder what the implications of this is on Linux and the BSDs, which have had FAT support for years.

It looks like the licensing only covers long file names, for one thing. This patent probably applies to both the RockRidge and Joliet extensions to the ISO 9660 filesystem format, too...
 

miguel

Senior member
Nov 2, 2001
621
0
0
Originally posted by: rjain
It's $0.25 of a $30 product.

I wonder what the implications of this is on Linux and the BSDs, which have had FAT support for years.

It looks like the licensing only covers long file names, for one thing. This patent probably applies to both the RockRidge and Joliet extensions to the ISO 9660 filesystem format, too...
From the link: "The licenses presented here do not provide rights beyond those explicitly stated above, including rights to other Microsoft patents, technical know-how or other forms of intellectual property. "

Isn't RockRidge and Joliet extensions part of the ISO standard? How can Microsoft patent those?

Also, I think it's different to have a FS or a program able to read FAT and actually creating a FS based on FAT.
 

rjain

Golden Member
May 1, 2003
1,475
0
0
Originally posted by: miguel

From the link: "The licenses presented here do not provide rights beyond those explicitly stated above, including rights to other Microsoft patents, technical know-how or other forms of intellectual property. "

Isn't RockRidge and Joliet extensions part of the ISO standard? How can Microsoft patent those?
They didn't. They patented the technologies used in them, just like every other patent.
Also, I think it's different to have a FS or a program able to read FAT and actually creating a FS based on FAT.
What does it mean to have an FS able to read FAT? What do you mean by "based on"?

The patents cover long file names being stored in shorter file name fields, not FAT, RockRidge, or Joliet.
 

miguel

Senior member
Nov 2, 2001
621
0
0
Originally posted by: rjain
What does it mean to have an FS able to read FAT? What do you mean by "based on"?

The patents cover long file names being stored in shorter file name fields, not FAT, RockRidge, or Joliet.
FS able to read FAT. Like linux can mount FAT FS.
I should not have used "based on" but rather a FAT FS.

 

rjain

Golden Member
May 1, 2003
1,475
0
0
linux is an OS, not an FS. :)
In any case, it can write to FAT FSes as well, and mkfs.vfat can create a FAT FS with LFN support. Also, mkisofs can create RockRidge and Joliet ISO 9660 FSes.
It looks to me after a cursory reading that the patent covers reading the FS, as well.
 

ReiAyanami

Diamond Member
Sep 24, 2002
4,466
0
0
well as long as their not pulling a rambus...


china is making their own nationalist OS as well, they say to provide cheaper alternative to MS OS, which is true but u can bet it'll be loaded with "spyware"
it'll make microsoft palladium with super DRM look like child's play

type "democracy" in an e-mail, RedDragon Soft will puncture a hole thru its Great Firewall of China and contact your local Red Book Guard to notify them and protect your mind from terrorist ideas
 

ReiAyanami

Diamond Member
Sep 24, 2002
4,466
0
0
oh wait that's Ashcroft's and RIAA's Orrin Hatch's idea.

welcome to china, atleast we have better selection.

hey all the stuff on the shelves is already made in china too.
 

CanOWorms

Lifer
Jul 3, 2001
12,404
1
0
Maybe they want to put a value on this IP... it's the same way how you'll sue to show that your IP has value. That way they'll get more in return when they cross-license with other companies.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY