Licensing? Was: Removing Optical Boot Requirement from F20 Alpha Release Requirements

Chris Murphy lists at
Thu Sep 19 21:53:28 UTC 2013

On Sep 19, 2013, at 8:56 AM, Eric Blake <eblake at> wrote:
> Given the current state of the art, all known UEFI implementations for
> VMs require the use of a FAT driver whose license forbids redistribution
> for general purpose use, which means Fedora cannot ship it. 

I don't understand this. 

First, there is already a FAT driver that works out of the box in Fedora for general purpose use. 

And second, the UEFI spec in section 12.3 considers the EFI file system to be distinct from, although based on, FAT. And the spec includes long file name support, using UCS-2 encoding. Microsoft only have patent claims on FAT that relate to long file names. This is in effect not Microsoft's FAT, but rather an EFI file system maintained by the UEFI spec and is unchanging from Microsoft FAT variants.

We probably ought to have a mkfs variant for ESP's to ensure it's created per the UEFI spec and is guaranteed to not evolve with mkdosfs|mkfs.msdos|mkfs.vfat.

Chris Murphy

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