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By Rich Woods
Microsoft is adding support for exFAT to the Linux kernel
by Rich Woods
Today, Microsoft announced that it's going to be supporting adding exFAT to the Linux kernel. If you're unfamiliar with exFAT, it's the file system that's the successor to FAT32, used in Windows, SD cards, flash drives, and so on. As Microsoft puts it, it's the reason that so many devices work as soon as you use them in a "laptop, camera, and car".
Microsoft wants the Linux community to be able to use it as well, so it's releasing the spec for exFAT to the public. In fact, you can read through all of the documentation right now. One big advantage over FAT32 that you'll find is that it supports larger files. Being that FAT32 is a 32-bit file system, it can't support files over 4GB. exFAT is 64-bit, so it doesn't have the same limitation.
Support for FAT32 is pretty much everywhere, mainly because between it, exFAT, and NTFS, FAT32 has been around the longest. It makes sense for the newer exFAT to be available in more places.
Microsoft said that it also wants a Linux kernel with exFAT support to be included in a version of the Open Invention Network's Linux System Definition, eventually.
Exploit uses antivirus quarantine to release malware
by Justin L.
via Florian Bogner As the threat of malware grows more and more dangerous every day, antivirus programs evolve and help to keep our systems protected. However, a newly-discovered exploit takes advantage of these applications' features against themselves.
Florian Bogner, an Austrian IT security professional, dubbed the exploit as 'AVGater.' It takes advantage of the function of modern antiviruses to take out a certain entry from quarantine, and place it somewhere else on the host system to re-introduce the malware.
As explained in the video, a local attacker can manipulate the antivirus' scanning engine to bring the malicious file out. Typically, a non-administrator user would not be allowed to write a file to system folders like 'Program Files' or 'Windows', but by abusing NTFS directory junctions, access to these directories would be granted.
To be able to do all of this, however, the attacker must have access to the computer they want to infect; enterprise customers can be seen more as the ones who can be a target, as users could accidentally or even intentionally release a file from quarantine, potentially infecting others on their network.
Several unnamed products have been tested for AVGater prior to the disclosure of the exploit. Kaspersky, Malwarebytes, ZoneAlarm, Trend Micro, Emsisoft, and Ikarus have all released patches, as of publishing.
Source: Florian Bogner via Digital Trends
Google appears to be working on Pik, a new lossy image format
by Paul Hill
Google is unofficially working on a new lossy image format for the internet (of course), called Pik. According to the ReadMe on GitHub, the directory contains an encoder and a decoder for the format. The company does warn that the project is in the initial research stage and that it shouldn’t be used for any purpose.
The ReadMe file goes on to explain that Pik requires an AVX2 and FMA capable processor, such as Haswell. Despite Google’s warning not to use the software, it is actually usable if you know how to build the source code, instructions are given for anyone wanting to get their hands dirty (and images totally wrecked!).
For those not familiar with the terminology, a lossy image format, according to Wikipedia, is:
Google’s current lossy (and lossless) image format, WebP, was announced in the September of 2010. It’s not clear whether Google hopes to deprecate WebP in favour of Pik at this point in time.
Source: GitHub via 9to5Google
By Rich Woods
Microsoft's latest OneDrive update broke non-NTFS support on purpose
by Rich Woods
Yesterday, we reported that users were complaining about the latest OneDrive update not supporting any file systems other than NTFS. The new sync client for Windows effectively ended support for older file systems like exFAT and FAT32, along with the new ReFS.
If users had set up their OneDrive to sync to a drive that was formatted with one of the latter file systems, they booted up their PC to find that the client no longer worked.
But at the time, it was unclear whether Microsoft had made this change on purpose and without warning, or if it was a bug that would be fixed in a future update. As it turns out, this was supposed to be how OneDrive worked all along, and the company says that it simply fixed the bug that was enabling support on other file systems.
Microsoft issued the following statement to Neowin:
Of course, this doesn't change the fact that Microsoft pushed this update without any warning to users that had synced their OneDrive to an exFAT, FAT32, or ReFS drive. Now, your only option will be to format the drive to NTFS and re-sync everything, or just use another cloud storage provider like Dropbox.
By Rich Woods
The latest OneDrive update for Windows only supports NTFS
by Rich Woods
A few days ago, Microsoft updated its OneDrive sync client for Windows, and many users aren't happy. This is because the new application only seems to support NTFS, which is the default file system on modern versions of Windows.
It's not surprising to see an end of support for exFAT or FAT32, which have been around for decades. Some users, however, are reporting that they're unable to set up the cloud storage service on drives that are formatted with ReFS. Introduced with Windows 8 and Server 2012, ReFS is the next-generation file system for Windows, and it's rumored to be the default in an upcoming version of the OS.
When we tested this out, we downloaded the new sync client and attempted to set the OneDrive folder to a USB drive that was formatted with FAT32, and got the message that you can see in the image above. Unfortunately, many users are booting up their PCs, and finding that their already setup OneDrive isn't working.
Reports of the issue started coming in last week, and it's still unclear if Microsoft actually meant to do this. After all, it could be a simple bug causing it in the latest update, as the firm didn't warn anyone before doing this, and it would seem that it would still want to support ReFS going forward.
The simple solution is to format the drive you're using to NTFS (and sync everything all over again), or you can just wait until Microsoft provides an official statement, as it's entirely possible that the next update will fix this. Naturally, we've reached out to the company for more information.
Source: Microsoft (1) (2), Reddit via MSPoweruser