[Freedombox-discuss] Intel Compute Stick

Blibbet blibbet at gmail.com
Wed Jan 14 16:35:41 UTC 2015

>  [...] The main thing that makes UEFI code problematic
> at the moment is the FAT driver, which is specifically BSD licenced
> but with an additional restriction that it can only be used for UEFI
> (in order to benefit from a FAT patent exemption). That bit isn't
> free, (because restriction by domain is not allowed by DFSG/OSI) and
> thus is shipped in the non-free bits of the archive by Fedora and
> Debian. The distros are looking into ways to fix this (by relicencing,
> or re-writing), and I understand (from the conversation below) that
> redhat/fedora people are actively working on it.
> http://lists.linaro.org/pipermail/cross-distro/2014-December/000767.html
> http://lists.linaro.org/pipermail/cross-distro/2014-December/000767.html
> Wookey

Yes, FAT FS driver license is an issue. The UEFI dev kit also ships FAT
sources in a separate source tree to avoid it's license.

Apple ignores the FAT requirement and uses their own file system for
their EFI System Partition (ESP).

As I understand it, OS vendors and OEMs can ignore parts of the EFI spec
for their implementation.

Why can't Linux boxes use Ext(2-4) or another Linux-friendly FS, and
ignore the MSFT-patented file system?

UDF just got ported to EFI, that might be an option.

The main issue it would cause is complications in upgrading OSes, where
one doesn't understand that FS, at least for for non-virtual cases. But
the system would be free do use its file system w/o paying MSFT FAT
patent royalties.

More information about the Freedombox-discuss mailing list