lunes, 6 de octubre de 2008

VFAT, UTF-8, KDE, HAL and the kernel/mount

(That title seems that I am shouting...)

We (well, more precisely Debian Qt/KDE Maintainers' list) received a bug report about vfat devices with UTF-8 being mounted as case sensitive filesystems. I was trying to see what could be done, but as usual, Sune "pusling" Vuorela is much faster than I :-) . It turns out that HAL is sending this information to KDE. Michael Biebl, who works in HAL, joined the discussion, and told us that that's the info they get from the kernel, and the do not mess with it. And also the filesystem can actually be written like that (which I do not know if that is standard).

It seems that mounting a device as UTF-8 makes it case sensitive by default. And there are some people who need UTF-8 in their vfat devices.

So, where's the bug? In UTF-8 that implies a case sensitive filesystem? In the kernel/mount for providing a case sensitive filesystem where it should not be? In HAL for passing that info (I do not think so) In KDE, for mounting with the options that they are given?

Just as a fix, Sune sent a patch that mount's vfat devices as case insensitive. It will surely work, but it doesn't feel "right" to do that...