Windows 10: Note on ReFS for windows (Long File names)

  1.    09 Sep 2016 #1

    Note on ReFS for windows (Long File names)

    Hi there
    After using gpedit.msc and setting option for long file names - and a reboot -- still not working (Windows 10 Pro ver 1607)

    Here's the folder from my server running Linux Centos 7 as its OS. All OK

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    Here's the folder as seen by a Windows client --you can see it's totally hosed

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    Android based OS'es for example Bose wireless speakers using the Bose sound touch app to access server via plex, Android phones, smart TV's accessing the server via Plex all work just fine - windows has problem with the longer file names including PLEX on the windows client (although I don't bother with PLEX on the windows client - I run PLEX from the server - was just testing Windows for the file names).

    Squeezebox server / Logitech media server on Linux also accesses files OK on your client squeezeboxes --still a great remote system and was far cheaper than Sonos !!!! plus optical output into amplifier too and plays FLAC as well. !!! Unfortunately these are no longer made but still work beautifully. I also have one of these in my Shed a good 200 metres away from the house - my Wifi is good enough though. !!

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    Testing running the Squeezebox server on Windows -- also gave file name problems for accessing the music on the remote squeezeboxes. No probs when the remote squeezeboxes used as a Client from the Linux server.

    Maybe some Ms enabled apps might work but that's no good if you are running servers using Windows Clients to access the files -- and it's a long if not impossible job to re-name and re-tag zillions of these files.

    It's about time IMO to get rid of the stupid file name length restriction -- how many years ago was Dos superceeded --Windows 98 I believe was the first windows not based on DOS as the underlying kernel.

    Edit : I think in the comments to setting the file system the minimum requirement is Windows Server 2016 although it does specify Windows 10 as well so Ms might have pulled this feature at the last minute.


    Last edited by jimbo45; 09 Sep 2016 at 02:31.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    09 Sep 2016 #2

    Note on ReFS for windows (Long File names)

    Hi there

    While ReFS file system can now handle LONG file names - you still can't use it as a boot drive.

    Things like File explorer will still see files from say Linux servers via SMB connected (SAMBA) network drives with the file length limitation - so IMO this is a half assed measure to introduce a file system - if it's as resilient as it's supposed to be then make it available on ALL HDD's (including boot) and allow apps that use file explorer for browsing to access long file names.

    The OS kernel should be intelligent enough to handle the file system properly.

    Linux OS'es don't have any problem with a great variety of file systems - whether on the boot device or not.

    Until the long file name problem is fixed I can't really use Windows for any sensible sort of media file sharing / serving for remote clients.

      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    09 Sep 2016 #3

    I think that "half assed" is a bit unfair.

    You can't boot Linux on NTFS (as required permissions are not supported) and you can't boot Windows on anything else. Of course either can see separate non-boot volumes with no problem (except for this problem you describe of course).

    MS specifically say you can't use ReFS as a boot drive (yet).
    "With this in mind, we will implement ReFS in a staged evolution of the feature: first as a storage system for Windows Server, then as storage for clients, and then ultimately as a boot volume. This is the same approach we have used with new file systems in the past."

    You can native boot a NTFS formatted vhdx stored on a ReFS formatted volume though incidentally which is interesting.

    That doesn't help really with your problem of maximum file length. You might find this interesting - particularly the comment about users who wants to call a file "This is the letter to my lawyer in which I blamed this guy for that stuff and also the correspondence related to this letter.docx" rather than "letter2laywer1.docx". Each to their own I guess...

    Path length still limited in Windows Explorer and other apps?

    Out of interest, this "Old Music" directory you use as an example - what do you see with dir from a command line? Is that truncated too or is it just explorer that shows garbage?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    09 Sep 2016 #4

    Hi there

    Same problem --shows truncated files

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    While your example was an excessive example of a file name length - for some music tracks it's not unreasonable at all to have long file names.

    I'll try creating a hideously long file name on my Linux server on an external NTFS formatted drive --that could be interesting -- actually easier just to copy that Early CD directory using the Linux OS to write to the NTFS HDD and then see if Linux reads the NTFS HDD with the correct file lengths.

    If it does then that would imply the NTFS file system can handle it but the Windows OS has restrictions in the applications -- it's not an exhaustive test as NTFS read and write on Linux is managed in the kernel by FUSE but it's an indication.

    Will post back later with the result.

      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    09 Sep 2016 #5

    What if you put dir \\.\Y:\Music\ ?

    \\.\ should (apparently) allow you to see long paths.

    For file I/O, the "\\?" prefix to a path string tells the Windows APIs to disable all string parsing and to send the string that follows it straight to the file system. For example, if the file system supports large paths and file names, you can exceed the MAX_PATH limits that are otherwise enforced by the Windows APIs. For more information about the normal maximum path limitation, see the previous section Maximum Path Length Limitation.

    Many but not all file I/O APIs support "\\?"; you should look at the reference topic for each API to be sure.

    I'm out of my depth here so I'm going to stop - looks like it may be worth a try though...
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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