EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

08.29.19

Microsoft Wants Linux to Use exFAT for the Same Reasons it Wants Everybody to Use OOXML

Posted in GNU/Linux, Kernel, Microsoft, Patents at 4:25 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Every line of code that is written to our standards is a small victory; every line of code that is written to any other standard, is a small defeat.”

James Plamondon, Microsoft Technical Evangelist. From Exhibit 3096; Comes v Microsoft litigation [PDF]

Summary: Contrary to what Microsoft-dominated media is trying to tell us, Linux does not need exFAT and by adopting exFAT Linux would become more closely connected to and tightly controlled by Microsoft

THE googlebombing appears to be back. This morning people search for Linux news and instead get Microsoft news; right now, for example, 10 out of 10 results for “Linux” (in Google News), i.e. 100%, are actually about Microsoft rather than Linux.

“Technically speaking, Samsung already has the substitute. Maybe this is what Microsoft is scared of? Microsoft always strives to be ‘the’ standard.”What is it all about? We wrote about it approximately a month ago. It’s hardly even news, except for the legal department. “What I read online so far makes it look like being about injecting Microsoft products and software patents into the kernel,” one reader told us this morning, having already surveyed the news. “That increases the likelihood of other patent vectors like Mono being used against FOSS. If Microsoft were serious about supporting FOSS, it would do just that: add support for EXT4 and OpenZFS and promote both over exFAT and NTFS.”

LWN’s kernel expert (whom we respect) said: “Linux support for the exFAT filesystem has had a long and troubled history; Microsoft has long asserted patents in this area that have prevented that code from being merged into the kernel. Microsoft has just changed its tune, announcing that upstreaming exFAT is now OK…”

“It’s quite revealing when one considers who hyped up the whole thing, in effect causing a “googlebomb”.”So what? Linux already has replacements for it that are equally good. Technically speaking, Samsung already has the substitute. Maybe this is what Microsoft is scared of? Microsoft always strives to be ‘the’ standard.

Now let’s look at what the media said. It’s quite revealing when one considers who hyped up the whole thing, in effect causing a “googlebomb”.

Well, the report we initially saw came from SJVN (maybe he got a pointer or inside ‘scoop’, maybe predating this Microsoft post from Microsoft’s mole in the Linux Foundation’s Board). Microsoft is just trying to leverage OIN and its fake software patents (they would not survive a court’s scrutiny or even the Patent Trial and Appeal Board’s (PTAB) scrutiny after 35 U.S.C. § 101) to make itself the ‘standard’ in Linux file systems. Seeing that Windows is losing its old dominance, Microsoft looks for new things to ‘infect’ with its so-called ‘IP’ (that it totally controls). To quote SJVN, who has been Microsoft-friendly in recent years:

For years, Microsoft used its patents as a way to profit from open-source products. The poster-child for Microsoft’s intellectual property aggression were the File Allocation Table (FAT) patents. But the Microsoft of then is not the Microsoft of now. First, Microsoft open-sourced its entire patent portfolio and now Microsoft is explicitly making its last remaining FAT intellectual property, the exFAT patents, available to Linux and open source via the Open Invention Network (OIN).

Microsoft announced that it now loves Linux and “we say that a lot, and we mean it! Today we’re pleased to announce that Microsoft is supporting the addition of Microsoft’s exFAT (Extended File Allocation Table) technology to the Linux kernel.”

Will the ongoing lawsuits be dropped?

And what about Foxconn? Microsoft sued Foxconn this year, using its notorious patents; and payments were demanded for Linux-based products.

“Will the ongoing lawsuits be dropped?”Will all the blackmail money be refunded (for these exFAT patents)?

No.

So does Microsoft really change its spots? Maybe it realises that these patents are too weak because of 35 U.S.C. § 101?

SJVN’s article is more of a puff piece; it does not mention any of the above questions. We worry that some people who used to advocate GNU/Linux are nowadays advocating “club Linux Foundation” instead, i.e. proprietary software giants that are Linux Foundation sponsors and often reject Linux, they just exploit the name/brand. That’s where the money is. The sellouts and defectors profit from betrayal.

Soon afterwards Phoronix caught up with the action because it’s typically very fast and it had also caught the prelude to this (in the kernel’s mailing lists). Michael Larabel’s position:

With Microsoft now publicly documenting the exFAT specification and giving its blessing for Linux, it’s possible that out-of-tree exFAT driver could soon be merged into the mainline Linux kernel.

Larabel’s post has a neutral tone; Larabel often covers the replacements for exFAT and the issues associated with exFAT.

“…Larabel often covers the replacements for exFAT and the issues associated with exFAT.”But Microsoft boosters aggressively promote exFAT right now (today and yesterday). Microsoft’s message to Linux? Stop making your own file systems for portable devices. Just use Microsoft’s. Ask politely for our permission, as we have patents and we call all the shots.

We were hardly surprised to see Microsoft's longtime booster Tim Anderson bombarding the media [1, 2] (with changes) and Microsoft propaganda sites (dedicated ones) doing the same, e.g. [1, 2, 3, 4]. Linux Foundation staff promoted this, as expected, even several times [1, 2]. There has never been anything (in recent years) that Microsoft did and the Linux Foundation did not like. Not a single word about what happened in Munich or the bribes. Microsoft pays for Zemlin’s PR services. Why put this client ‘at risk’?

“What next? Will Microsoft also offer its own scheduler and network stack? So that it can better control the whole development and direction of Linux?”There was also non-Microsoft media ‘on the case’, albeit mostly Microsoft apologists (with history) like this one or that one. We don’t want to mention names; readers can click and see who we speak of. Their track record is well documented. Joey Sneddon said: “Microsoft has announced that it’s bringing exFAT support to the Linux kernel, with code contributed licensed under GPLv2. This is huge, unexpected, yet very welcome #opensource news.”

Open Source? Maybe. Free software? No, not quite. GPLv3, for instance, has something to say about patents.

What next? Will Microsoft also offer its own scheduler and network stack? So that it can better control the whole development and direction of Linux? What if Microsoft tried? Would resistance still be possible?

The most ridiculous article we’ve stumbled upon was Microsoft’s “Philanthropic” Services Continue exFAT File System To Make Its Way On Linux Kernel (no kidding! Philanthropic!).

“As if Microsoft now ‘bosses’ Linux developers through the media (which publicly shames them if they stand in the way).”Microsoft blackmails Linux with patents, Appuals calls that “Microsoft’s “Philanthropic” Services”! Wow! That’s almost as bad as calling Bill Gates’ tax-evading scam a “charity”.

Remaining coverage [1, 2] was more moderate but failed to ask any of the Big Questions. The latter of these is about Paragon Software, which just like Tuxera helped Microsoft tax Linux (through exFAT licences).

Blackmail? Extortion? Forget about it! It’s the ‘new’ Microsoft! Now that it’s becoming irrelevant and it’s trying to impose patent traps on Linux we’re supposed to welcome it with open arms? Microsoft Emil, a predecessor of Microsoft Peter at Ars Technica, has just thrown in the “Microsoft loves Linux” lie in image form. Our media survey, which took nearly a day, showed one important facts; those who promote it are almost always Microsoft boosters with record. They don’t care about Linux and most of them actively and openly hate Linux. They spent years attacking and badmouthing GNU/Linux. One of our readers called all of these articles, collectively, “Microsoft spam” and we agree. It’s putting pressure on Linux developers to just do what Microsoft tells them. As if Microsoft now ‘bosses’ Linux developers through the media (which publicly shames them if they stand in the way).

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Links 5/12/2019: qBittorrent 4.2.0, Expensive Librem 5 and OpenBSD Bugs

    Links for the day



  2. Microsoft Staff Repeatedly Refuses to Tell How Many People Use WSL, Defends Patent Extortion and Blackmail of Linux Instead

    The people who develop WSL (mostly Microsoft employees) get easily irritated when asked how many people actually use this thing; but more interestingly, however, they reveal their disdain for GNU/Linux and support for Microsoft blackmail (for 'Linux patent tax')



  3. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, December 04, 2019

    IRC logs for Wednesday, December 04, 2019



  4. Links 4/12/2019: Tails 4.1, UCS 4.4-3 and Proxmox VE 6.1

    Links for the day



  5. Google Tightens Its Noose

    Now it’s official! Google is just a bunch of shareholders looking to appease the Pentagon at all costs



  6. Europeans Still Need to Save the European Patent Office From Those Who Attack Its Patent Quality

    Patent quality is of utmost interest; without it, as we're seeing at the EPO and have already seen at the USPTO for a number of years, legal disputes will arise where neither side wins (only the lawyers win) and small, impoverished inventors or businesses will be forced to settle outside the courts over baseless allegations, often made by parasitic patent trolls (possessing low-quality patents they don't want scrutinised by courts)



  7. We Never Accepted and Will Never Accept Corporate Money

    Corporate money is a unique problem because of its magnitude and the fact that it's impersonal; shareholders can only ever accept its supposed justifications if they're receiving something in return (of proportional worth to the payment/transaction)



  8. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, December 03, 2019

    IRC logs for Tuesday, December 03, 2019



  9. Links 3/12/2019: elementary OS 5.1 Hera, Plasma 5.17.4, Firefox 71

    Links for the day



  10. Laundering the Reputation of Criminals: That's an Actual Job

    An important reminder that the manufactured, paid-for (media is being bribed) image of Bill Gates is the product of the PR industry he enlisted to distract from his endless crimes



  11. 'Priceless' Tickets to the EPO's Back End and Team UPC

    CIPA's and the EPO's event (later this week) is more of the same; the EPO exists not to serve European businesses but a bunch of law firms and their biggest clients (which usually aren't even European)



  12. IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 02, 2019

    IRC logs for Monday, December 02, 2019



  13. New EPO Leak Shows That the Rumours and Jokes Are Partly True and We Know Who 'Runs the Show'

    Europe’s second-largest institution is so profoundly dysfunctional, a reprehensible kakistocracy of tribalism, money-grabbing career-climbing autocrats and possibly major fraud; today’s leak looks at what motivated and enabled the formation and latest incarnation of “Team Campinos”



  14. Links 2/12/2019: Linux Mint 19.3 Beta, DPL Sam Hartman Talks About SystemD

    Links for the day



  15. What Former Debian Project Leader (Second to the Late Ian Murdock) Thinks About SystemD in Debian GNU/Linux

    Now that Debian is debating and voting on diversity in the technical sense the thoughts of Bruce Perens merit broader audience/reach



  16. Free/Libre Software Will Eventually Become the Norm, 'Open Source' is Just Proprietary Software Trying to 'Buy Time'

    More people are starting to ask questions about Free software while “Open Source” languishes (people can see it’s just a mask for proprietary software); it was a two-decade delaying tactic that’s wearing off (people see GitHub and the OSI/Linux Foundation for what they really are)



  17. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 01, 2019

    IRC logs for Sunday, December 01, 2019



  18. Richard Stallman is Active and Doing Well

    The rumour mill may still be humming along; but against all odds — as Chief GNUisance of the GNU Project — Stallman keeps fighting the good fight (in the face of growing resistance)



  19. Banning Former Microsoft Employees Who Complain About Microsoft Lies, Abuses and Crimes

    The official account of Windows Insider is banning people whom it never even spoke to; this seems like a way of 'punishing' people who are not 'true believers' in Microsoft



  20. Wikileaks: Thierry Breton May Have Misused Regulatory/Government Positions to Attack His Competition (in the Market)

    Thierry 'revolving doors' Breton as seen by the United States government



  21. 13 Years of UPC Promises

    The anatomy of UPC 'fake news' or lobbying tactics along the lines of self-fulfilling prophecies and false predictions



  22. Is Water Wet?

    The criteria for patent eligibility reduced only to this question: will allowing these patents increase ‘production’ (number of patent grants)?



  23. The EPO's President Admits He's Illegally Granting Software Patents (CII, 4IR, IoT, AI and Blockchain Mean Software Patents at the EPO)

    The EPO's chief liar is openly and proudly promoting software patents using buzzwords and hype waves (and mysterious acronyms that are rather meaningless but spread by the media in exchange for money received from the EPO)



  24. Tone Policing and the Linux Foundation

    A timely example of situations where the Linux Foundation can seemingly 'cancel' people (using the Code of Conduct) for political opinions



  25. It EEEsn't Just a Microsoft Thing Anymore

    The EEErosion of Python's independence is a known problem and Microsoft is not the sole culprit



  26. Links 1/12/2019: KDE's GTK CSD Support, Skrooge 2.21.0

    Links for the day



  27. Links 1/12/2019: Genode OS 19.11 Release, Sam Hartman (DPL) Speaks Out on SystemD

    Links for the day



  28. Maximalists Cherry-Picking the So-Called 'Corbyn' 'Leak' for Their Patent Agenda While the US Lobbies Britain for Software Patents and Worse

    A quick look at what last week's media coverage may have missed and what patent maximalists don't want to tell us about confidential trade-related documents



  29. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, November 30, 2019

    IRC logs for Saturday, November 30, 2019



  30. Microsoft Loves Linux Because It Pays for It

    Microsoft cannot ‘buy’ Linux itself, so it has been buying (bribing) all the ‘right’ people while telling them (and then they tell us, too!) they “love Linux” (which they don’t even use!)


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts