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FAT and SD filing system screwups

Microsoft appears to be wanting to protect/enforce various patents it has regarding the now ubiquitous FAT filing system; in particular the kludge that is long filenames (I believe TomTom now has a licence for their use of this?).

I would be inclined to throw out such a request based not upon a point of patent law, or prior art, but more on the fact that Microsoft does not yet have capable tools for handling their own filesystem.

Every night I plug my Zen into Azumi to charge it, ready for the next day of work. I put the Zen into "removable disk" mode because it will then act as a removable flash drive. This is because in Zen (MTP) mode, it needs to by synced to keep itself running, and if it isn't it can switch itself off (idle timeout).

Monday night I did this. Plugged in. Did not access the unit. Dismounted when charged, unplugged.

And at work on Tuesday, I saw:

Zen showing an error warning

Tuesday night I plugged the thing into Azumi and ran Scandisk. Now everybody who has read my b.log will know of unending despisement of this piece-of-crap software. For the record...

Scandisk, useless as ever
But, really, what else did I expect?

The chkdsk utility is better, but even so it failed to find anything wrong with the drive. According to Windows XP (SP3), it was A-OK:

Chkdsk, failing to spot any problem

It was now that I remembered getting dosfsck working on my Neuros OSD, so I put the card into the OSD's SD slot, logged in, and...

Dosfsck, saying 'Oi! Morons! How could you not see this?' :-)

What more need I say?
So, for the good of the global community, all the data entrusted to digital cameras, media players, PVRs, GPS and the like, I say we should claim the FAT filesystem and everything related to it from Microsoft and give it (free and unencumbered) to the public so it can be maintained by people who have a clue.


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