VFAT is case insensitive?!

Lee Braiden lee_b at digitalunleashed.com
Fri Sep 16 17:36:25 UTC 2005

On Friday 16 September 2005 17:49, Alvin Thompson wrote:
> i just installed another breezy machine, and i have the most peculiar
> problem. during the install, i created a VFAT partition, and all was
> well. now, i noticed that all of the '8.3' filename compliant files i
> put on this partition were showing up in lowercase. i added
> 'shortname=mixed' to fstab and now the files show up in the correct
> case, but still i can access the files in a case-insensitive way. the
> fstab entry is the same as i've always used:
> /dev/hda3 /data vfat rw,noexec,quiet,uid=1000,gid=1000 0 0
> i've never had this problem with my other breezy installs. what's going
> on? what am i missing? how do i fix it? help!

vfat IS case-insenstive.  It's a limitation of the filesystem.  I don't know 
how you ever did NOT have that problem.  NTFS is a little better, iirc -- it 
keeps the case you use, but will access the same file whichever case you use.  
I also think the earlier DOSes (much earlier, that is) used to baulk if you 
used anything but a particular case.  Not sure if it was upper or lower -- I 
think lower.

You might find UMSDOS more compliant with Unix filesystem standards, but I 
think you'll have to tar up any unix directories you want to store on VFAT, 
or else use a better filesystem.

Lee Braiden
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