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View Full Version : USB disc support for other file systems ?



Mnyb
2009-09-05, 07:19
Is there any plans to support any file system besides fat 32 for USB discs ?

The Touch is by nature a "linux" computer of some kind, does it not naturally support ext2 ext3 reisersf file systems ?

Is this available in packaged form for this platform somewhere or must one build this from source on the Touch itself invoking serious geek powers that I do not posses.

Hint: some linux head writes a wiki about it

With some hand-holding i can do things like building squeezeplay from svn or perl 5.8.8 on my server, but that takes god instructions.

What about NTFS quite common on large win formated usb drives ?

lrossouw
2009-09-05, 07:53
I've seen mention that NTFS may be scheduled for a future version. That would be good because you can't copy large files onto a FAT32 and I would probably use the same HD for non-music purposes.

funkstar
2009-09-06, 05:14
NTFS support is slated for 8.0.1

I actually don't know what other file systems will be supported natively. I don't know what the Touch uses internally for its own storeage/OS. But I would expect that all the usual Linux file systems will be supported, if not initially, then in time.

JohnSwenson
2009-09-06, 17:37
I plugged in a USB flash stick formatted with ext3 and it worked fine.

John S.

andyg
2009-09-06, 17:50
The biggest issue with officially supporting other filesystems is what happens if you pull the drive or the power without un-mounting it? Our thought is that NTFS is more fragile to this, and it unfortunately will likely be a common thing people will do that they may not do if using the drive with a computer. We obviously want to avoid that tech support call where someone loses an entire drive full of their only copy of music...

pfarrell
2009-09-06, 18:36
andyg wrote:
> We obviously want to avoid that tech support call where someone loses an entire drive full of their only copy of
> music...

I can see that having a really angry customer on the phone.... with no
way out.

I assume that a few tech support calls cost as much as the markup on the
units, so that has to be avoided. Keeping that 1-800 number is really
expensive.


--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

autopilot
2009-09-06, 18:42
The biggest issue with officially supporting other filesystems is what happens if you pull the drive or the power without un-mounting it? Our thought is that NTFS is more fragile to this, and it unfortunately will likely be a common thing people will do that they may not do if using the drive with a computer. We obviously want to avoid that tech support call where someone loses an entire drive full of their only copy of music...

Yes, but this is not unique to the Touch. Surley you could just add an unmount menu option and give people plenty of warning, when they plug it in, etc?

pfarrell
2009-09-06, 18:45
autopilot wrote:
> Yes, but this is not unique to the Touch. Surley you could just add an
> unmount menu option and give people plenty of warning, when they plug it
> in, etc?

Its unique to the Touch among the SlimDevices/Streaming Media division
products.


You don't really expect users to pay attention to warnings, do you?
Some huge percentage of users will simply pull the USB plug. Just as
they do for all the rest of the USB stuff they have.

--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

Mnyb
2009-09-06, 19:43
How are you supposed to handle disc's with the touch then ?

Does it have a real off meaning does it do a real shutdown or does just die ? Or does it have disc unmount in the menu.

Otherwise i see a real problem, you can not just pull out a fat 32 disc either ?

So how does the touch handle unmount of any disc ?

Interesting that it handles ext2/3 but do I need to ssh to it and do umount to be safe with that ?

andyg
2009-09-06, 19:56
The plan is definitely to have a warning appear every time a disk is connected and an obvious eject icon.

Mnyb
2009-09-06, 20:15
The plan is definitely to have a warning appear every time a disk is connected and an obvious eject icon.

Thanks thats a good and easy solution must users will understand that.
Make an pop up warning of some kind when the user pulls it out anyway.

funkstar
2009-09-07, 07:01
The plan is definitely to have a warning appear every time a disk is connected and an obvious eject icon.
And that way if it is ignored, it is out of Logitech's hands.

autopilot
2009-09-07, 08:54
And that way if it is ignored, it is out of Logitech's hands.

yes, that was my point.

Goodsounds
2009-09-07, 09:12
And that way if it is ignored, it is out of Logitech's hands.

Having a warning is a helpful reminder for users, but for liability purposes I'd bet it makes no difference.

pfarrell
2009-09-07, 09:23
Goodsounds wrote:
> funkstar;455974 Wrote:
>> And that way if it is ignored, it is out of Logitech's hands.
>
> Having a warning is a helpful reminder for users, but for liability
> purposes I'd bet it makes no difference.

And the warning will be ignored. The user will claim they didn't see it.
It was in the wrong color, etc.

The result will be a trashed disk holding thousands of dollars worth of
media files.


--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

aubuti
2009-09-07, 09:27
The result will be a trashed disk holding thousands of dollars worth of media files.
...and, of course, no backup.

Mnyb
2009-09-07, 09:31
Having a warning is a helpful reminder for users, but for liability purposes I'd bet it makes no difference.

Whats the difference Touch vs any computer ? If you yank disc's out of ANY computer without unmount theres a risk of failure.

Nobody blames Lenovo or Dell of a user rips out a spinning usb disk and it fails horribly ?

I thinks it's good move for logitech to have an external disc vs internal.
If they gone for internal they suddenly become PC/NAS vendors with all that headaches.

andyg
2009-09-07, 09:32
At least you can see where I'm coming from on not being that eager to support every possible filesystem... :)

autopilot
2009-09-07, 11:11
At least you can see where I'm coming from on not being that eager to support every possible filesystem... :)

I totally see where your coming from. I just feel the advantages might outweigh the disadvantages.

jimzak
2009-09-07, 11:25
What if someone else who did not see the warning attempts to remove the USB cable?

The warning is not infallible.

There is a lot at risk here.

Mnyb
2009-09-07, 11:42
What if someone else who did not see the warning attempts to remove the USB cable?

The warning is not infallible.

There is a lot at risk here.

Again no difference from any other computer, logitech can not be blamed for user error with disc .

Btw what about file systems ? they all have possible problems with improper handling would it really matter if I break my ntfs or fat32 drive .

I've learned as a n00b linux user that ext2/3 is more finicky they can mount as read only or other bizzare things when you least expect it ( but that must be an ubuntu special random mount parameters ) .
But if you even know what ext3 is your probably knowledgeable enough to not blame the Tough (that is if the auto mounting is bug free ).

Nikhil
2009-09-13, 22:31
The biggest issue with officially supporting other filesystems is what happens if you pull the drive or the power without un-mounting it? Our thought is that NTFS is more fragile to this, and it unfortunately will likely be a common thing people will do that they may not do if using the drive with a computer. We obviously want to avoid that tech support call where someone loses an entire drive full of their only copy of music...

What about Sun's ZFS? Isn't it supposed to handle power failures and unplugging seamlessly? I think there is some licensing issue that prevents a linux kernel with ZFS to be distributed, but I am sure that can be worked out. I know Solaris, OpenSolaris, NexentaOS, FreeBSD, and MacOS 10.5 Leopard can be configured to work with ZFS.

mherger
2009-09-13, 22:36
> What about Sun's ZFS?

When you try to load it on a system with less than 512MB of RAM you'll get
a warning. Not exactly a feature you'd expect on a music player.

sebp
2009-09-14, 03:16
ZFS is a memory hog, which I suppose wouldn't be very nice on the Touch, and the licensing issues left aside, ZFS wouldn't help more than setting the USB devices to be connected in synchronous rather than (default) asynchronous mode. The major drawback with synchronous writes is that writes from the network will be slowed down *a lot*. It would make no difference on reads.

When you unplug a USB device, what matters most is not the data left in the computer's cache, but how coherent the data that's been written to the device so far...

fuzzyT
2009-09-16, 12:52
In the most common use cases, won't the USB connected storage be operated in an essentially read-only manner? And doesn't 'no writes' imply 'no corruption' on disconnect?

I know there will be some users who manage their libraries over the network and directly on the attached storage, but how common will this be, and among those doing this, wouldn't it be a small percentage of time that writes would be occurring?

Not to downplay this too much. The danger might be real, but less commonly encountered in practice.

JJZolx
2009-09-16, 13:48
In the most common use cases, won't the USB connected storage be operated in an essentially read-only manner? And doesn't 'no writes' imply 'no corruption' on disconnect?

The library database will be written to the storage device on which the music files reside. The marketing angle is that this allows you to have portable libraries and to swap libraries just by swapping USB disks (or SD cards).

But there are also practical reasons for doing this. The Fab4 doesn't have a huge amount of nonvolatile memory, so it can't store arbitrarily large database files. Also, if you did store the database on the device then you'd have to deal with changing USB drives either by managing multiple libraries or else forcing a library scan every time the USB drive was changed.

fuzzyT
2009-09-17, 07:29
Interesting. It makes some sense to store the DB with the music files, though at the expense of adding some complications.

Versioning of the library DB vs the installed SQL engine will need to be managed. This could hit on server software upgrade or when moving storage from one Touch (or other TinySC device) to another. Easy enough to check for this on connection.

Device hot disconnect, as mentioned before, could be an issue. I suppose some consistency checks could be run on the file system and library DB, perhaps triggering repair attempts when errors were found.

It also brings into question the longstanding built-in assumption that there will be only one library per SC installation. The library has so far been defined as a single database instance. And rather than one central DB, we'll now have many distributed DBs. I suspect that switching between the contents of multiple connected DBs/libraries will quickly become desirable.

Blending libraries may also be desirable, though that would be a harder problem to solve.

There have been longstanding requests for the ability to segregate and manage multiple libraries on a single SC installation. I had assumed this might be implemented as multiple logical libraries within one DB. Now we are looking at managing multiple physical libraries/DBs. If switching/blending physical libraries is implemented it seems like that could be leveraged to cover the multi-library feature request. Each library could be stored in its own DB, available via the library switching/blending feature.

adydula
2009-10-21, 19:56
Hello,

Please let me say that the one reason I have preordered the Touch is to be able to attach a large USB drive to have my 100GB music flac collection available without a pc up and runnning...so NTFS is extrememly desireable.

If this is not going to happen then I would cancel my order. Its that important to me and many users. More so than having people unplug their drive and loosing their colelction. You could program a warning etc, But I accept this possibilty.

I have my collection on 4 discrete usb drives. I dont expect Logitech to have to solve this issue completly.

Logitech needs to properly document the risks if any in the implementation, but please support NTFS for us that really want it on day 1. You could have a firmware update for this where we sign off on the risks etc..

Thanks for listening, the Touch seems like a really neat product and I look forward to getting mine in december!!

Alex

NOTE: I will be using a 1.5 TB Seagate USB drive.

pfarrell
2009-10-21, 20:18
adydula wrote:
> Logitech needs to properly document the risks if any in the
> implementation, but please support NTFS for us that really want it on
> day 1. You could have a firmware update for this where we sign off on
> the risks etc..

I don't understand this. While NTFS is a fine file system, why is it
required for your application? Just format the disks in another format,
copy your flac files to it, and be happy.

What am I missing?

--
Pat Farrell
http://www.pfarrell.com/

iPhone
2009-10-21, 23:04
Please let me say that the one reason I have preordered the Touch is to be able to attach a large USB drive to have my 100GB music flac collection available without a pc up and runnning...so NTFS is extrememly desireable.
.......

.......
NOTE: I will be using a 1.5 TB Seagate USB drive.

Have to agree and ask the same question as Pat. Why? With only 100GB of music, what is the deal with the huge 1.5TB USB Seagate? Planning on adding a boat load of CDs or did you mean to type 1000GB FLAC collection instead of 100?

And what is the big deal with file storage format when the USB drive is going to be connected to the Touch most of the time? FLAC doesn't care what file system the USB drive uses. I have a small 500GB Toshiba I use when traveling and FAT is just fine. At the house I plug in a 1.5TB WD MyBook to the Touch with TinySC and all is well.

audiomuze
2009-10-22, 07:57
I fail to see how Logitech could be held responsible for a user yanking their USB connected drive and losing data as a result - it's user error, as simple as that. Will Logitech also be liable if there's a power failure during a write operation resulting in a trashed drive...using the logic of earlier posts surely Logitech would be liable on grounds they didn't instruct the customer to install lightning protection and/ or a UPS. Honestly, if this were the case Microsoft would have been broke by now just through the amount of drive trashing they've been responsible for in the USB domain through Windows Delayed Write Failure issues, let alone idiot users yanking a device without flushing the write buffers.

Mnyb
2009-10-24, 03:56
I fail to see how Logitech could be held responsible for a user yanking their USB connected drive and losing data as a result - it's user error, as simple as that. Will Logitech also be liable if there's a power failure during a write operation resulting in a trashed drive...using the logic of earlier posts surely Logitech would be liable on grounds they didn't instruct the customer to install lightning protection and/ or a UPS. Honestly, if this were the case Microsoft would have been broke by now just through the amount of drive trashing they've been responsible for in the USB domain through Windows Delayed Write Failure issues, let alone idiot users yanking a device without flushing the write buffers.

They are not responsible but it will look bad , look at some of the forums here .

Wifi =user errors during setup, bad wifi environment not fit for streaming audio, buggy routers, leaves a 5% residue with problems that are logitechs to solve.

Windows, bad AV software most of them sees MySQL as a virus and wrecks the scan and other functions, still most users blame Logitech. They do it so much that they are going to change the dB engine in the future.

Tagging, people have file tags in a mess, still blaming logitech.

So idiot proofing this function saves them a lot of heat .
They are probably developing some eject icon and warnings and such directly on the device itself.

I bet one beer that someone will put his/hers whole unbacked up library on the Touch, and wreck it and then blame logitech across the whole internet.
This will of course be pirated files so he/she/it can not just rip again , but still the blame will fall on logitech.

Btw, what would happen if MS allowed such sincere and straight user communication as we have here :)

Edit: I to want official support for more file systems unofficially it apparently works with ext2/3 I prefer these as I find ntfs 256 chars in file name limiting . Note that this limit is from the root of the disc you use if you for example are on windows C:\Documents and Settings\Default User\Mina dokument\Min musik\ and if you then use subfolders to structure things
and then have some classical music you are going to hit the roof quickly.
I have had problems where i could not copy between discs for this reason. So nowdays a have my music as close to root as possible . and as i abandoned win this is academic anyway.

adydula
2009-10-25, 07:02
Not suporting all file systems is acceptable, but supoprt the mainstream, and NTFS is main stream.

Risk...yes there's risk with usb drives detaching etc..and I have lost data this way...even though there is a right way and a wrong way...its didnt stop Microsoft from allowing external USB drive to be attached..warning or not. Heck theres risk that someone will delete critical files and data all the time.

Many people do not have their pc data backed up..should they not have a pc and stick to a legeal yellow pad?

There are dumb people out there that always will learn the hard way.

Not having support for the mainstream OS files system across XP, Vista and WIN 7 is just plain you having your head in the sand. Even with Fat32 you can loose stuff if you don not detach from the OS before pulling the drive / key out.

Nothing will stop someone from unplugging a usb drive if they want to unless you have like the washing machines have, a lock and unlock feature on the usb connector!!! Please NO!!!! LOL..

Having a warning is nice, a detach icon, press or touch here to safely detach is nice...but there always will be risk.

I am glad that Logitech is committed to suporting NTFS i the near future...keep it simple, get it out..

All the best
Alex
Note: I am a PC Developer.

Just read some of the last posts on why with only 100gb of flacs I need NTFS. I dont.
I can format to Fat 32 with unsupported Internet Utilities etc and lots of internal devlopers tools. The fact is many large USB drive are sold to unsuspecting customers who dont give a hoot about File systems that are pre-formated with NTFs...these people will connect or try to and be calling Logitech and asking the question. Each and every call to Logitech is equated to real dollars to the support staff. Less calls less dollard spent by Logitech and more profitable.

The folks that buy these drives will more than not understand or want to reformat with a utility, recopy etc..its just makes good business sense to suppor the mainstrea, file system, less calls, happier customers.

sebp
2009-10-25, 15:13
Not suporting all file systems is acceptable, but supoprt the mainstream, and NTFS is main stream.
Not supporting all filesystems is acceptable, but support the filesystems I use for my backups, and EXT2/3 is the filesystem I use for my backups. ;)