Samsung's Open Source, Flash-Friendly File System F2FS Samsung creates flash-friendly, open source file system: F2FS - By Rick Burgess:
Samsung codesmith Jaegeuk Kim has submitted a new "flash-friendly" file system to the Linux Kernel tree. The new file system, coined F2FS (flash-friendly file system), is actually open source and is the embodiment of Samsung's efforts to develop a file system attuned to the sensibilities of modern flash storage.
The most prolific and "universal" file systems (i.e. FAT16, FAT32) are also archaic ones, predating today's enormously spacious, rewritable flash devices. In fact, most file systems aren't perfectly suited for flash media, although many have been trying.
By the way, don't be surprised if F2FS finds its way onto Android handsets -- a potential benefit of submitting the file system to the Linux kernel tree.
It's worth mentioning that open source does not necessarily equal patent-free. Despite reading through various analyses of Kim's submission, I have not seen anyone else's opinion as to how unfettered F2FS really is. It does appear that f2fs tools though -- the software which gives users and Linux the ability to manipulate and utilize F2FS -- is licensed under GNU GPLv2. This may indicate Samsung is in a giving mood, as the GPLv2 ensures all included patents must be licensed for everyone's free use or not licensed at all.
For Linux users interested in checking out Samsung's latest kernel contribution, f2fs tools can be downloaded here.
It would be interesting to see how this turns out from a server perspective. At what point can something like this be considered from a storage perspective? I'm seeing flash-drive arrays becoming more popular.
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reply to FF4m3
This is a good thing with how much more media people want to cart around.
The PS3 is a good example of the flaw with FAT32 on external drives, The device can output HD video however since external drives have to be FAT32 it would be impossible to put HD video on a drive in a format it can read. Even with pixel inducing compression one would be hard pressed to get 1080p into that 4gb window.
Hopefully this does gain wide adoption, Naturally of course the big issue will be getting other groups (MS, Apple, console makers) to support it. Any linux based device of course could just be patched.
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reply to FF4m3
I'm curious how much a filesystem just for flash is needed. Would patched to EXT or BTRFS not be a more sensible solution? Or is the architecture of these established filesystems inconsistent with the goals of f2fs.
Either way, a standard filesystem that device makers can use without having to pay royalties that has industry-wide support is what the tech industry really needs.
I'm not sure. both ext*fs and btrfs depend on areas of metadata that are updated significantly more than the general storage area under most circumstances. I know some of them have mirrors that take tuns in being the active one fro certain structures, but they cannot compare with roving metadata. The only downside I can see is possible complications with locating them in case of disaster recovery.
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