Linked by Eugenia Loli on Fri 13th Jan 2006 00:53 UTC
Microsoft On Tuesday, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) reaffirmed Microsoft's FAT patents (covering the File Allocation Table), but sources close to the Public Patent Foundation indicate that this is not the end of the story of efforts to overthrow these patents. According to sources cited by, the re-issuance of the patent was based on the examiner's having accepted an argument previously advanced by Microsoft, and previously rejected.
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Member since:

"Actually there is. *cough*IBM*cough*"

Actually IBM wouldn't have a prayer of fighting this one. They didn't invent it, and don't own it. Even if MS didn't invent it, they damn sure own the rights.

This patent was filed many months ago. IBM chose to not contest a single sentence of it. If they would have had a valid claim, they would have certainly taken steps to block it. (cheaper to block it, than fight it in court)

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Hands Member since:

Actually, IBM would have a prayer of fighting this one. Prior art isn't the only reason for invalidating a patent or royalty claims. IBM has a Linux product which they probably want to protect. It may not be for altruistic reasons, but IBM does have some interest in the well-being of Linux.

The fact that MS allowed FAT to become widely adopted by various industries before they started demanding royalties means that even without prior art there other legal protections for those who were using FAT before MS asked for royalties.

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walterbyrd Member since:

>>IBM has a Linux product which they probably want to protect. <<

IBM does not have a linux distro, or any other linux "product" that I know of. IBM does make a lot of money supporting the linux products of other companies.

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Wrawrat Member since:

Interest in the well-being of Linux, true. But interest in VFAT? IBM are making business by selling servers and services/solutions, a market who couldn't care less of that archaic filesystem. Remember they sold their PC division, so they couldn't care less of home users, those who are likely to use FAT.

Not a long time ago, IBM were infamous for their business practices. Now they are seen as benevolent?

Reply Parent Score: 1