New Protogon file system in Windows 8 renamed to ReFS

By Tom Warren, on 1st Dec 11 12:39 pm with 39 Comments

Microsoft is building a new file system into Windows 8 that appears to be named ReFS.

Traces of the “Protogon” file system were discovered in early alpha copies of Windows 8 as far back as June. The references to an “NT Protogon FS driver” appeared to be a kernel mode driver for a new file system called Protogon. The new file system appears to have been renamed to ReFS according to winunleaked. The site posted a number of images demonstrating ReFs in action on Thursday. ReFS appears to incorporate database-like concepts like transactions, cursors, rows and tables. Rafael Rivera discovered earlier this year that “Protogon” includes a string, which seems to indicate “Protogon” could replace or at least emulate NTFS file system. Protogon appears to be the codename for ReFS.

ReFS could be similar to Microsoft’s original concept of Windows Future Storage (WinFS). The codename (WinFS) originally made its way into Longhorn (Windows Vista) builds during the early beta phases. WinFS was first demonstrated in 2003 at the company’s Professional Developers Conference. Microsoft promised an advanced storage subsystem designed to manage data by means of a database. The WinFS database would allow any type of information to be stored in it alongside a defined schema for the data type. The idea was to speed up searching and data sharing between applications. Microsoft ditched the idea before Windows Vista was brought to market.

Microsoft hasn’t publicly discussed any plans to incorporate a new file system in Windows 8. The software giant did detail its large disk and large sector support in Windows 8 earlier this week. Microsoft plans to make it possible to install Windows 8 and boot from a 3TB or bigger hard disk. The support will be possible with UEFI firmware systems that allow Microsoft to take advantage of new partitioning techniques to better manage data stored on large disks.

Windows 8 ReFS

  • Martyn Metalous

    Do hope this feature makes it.

  • Seth_p

    Typo: last paragraph you spelled Microsoft as “Microsfot” :P

    • Sarvesh

       ypp….

    • Pigeon_Collector

      He also wrote ‘portitioning’ instead of ‘partitioning’ in the second to last line. — I didn’t care.

    • Seth_p

      Sure you care, you just mentioned it :)

    • Test1ngi23

      Maybe he makes his posts using IE. He could use a spell checking browser like Firefox or Chrome.

    • ian

      IE 10 DOES have spell checker

    • Anonymous

      finally…

    • Test1ngi23

      I wasn’t aware that IE10 was released yet.

    • Monkey D Black

      spell checker and auto-correction

    • Mark

      @e150a27e646961d5594b4ac9b6bd58f3:disqus 

      “I wasn’t aware that IE10 was released yet. ”

      News to me since I’m typing this comment from it.    

    • Anonymous

      Sigh, you can use the speckie spell checker add-on for IE: http://www.speckie.com/home/.

    • Anonymous

      Enjoy that attack while you still can.  Windows 8 will incorporate spell checker throughout the OS, which is the right way to go.

    • Guest

      Which is why OS X did it years ago.

    • Oiler_head

      Maybe FF and Chrome users should just learn how to spell…

    • Test1ngi23

      So spell checkers shouldn’t be necessary then? Then why is MS bothering to add one?

    • Guest

      @e150a27e646961d5594b4ac9b6bd58f3:disqus 

      They’re adding it so that whiny bitches like yourself will have to find something else to complain about.

    • Guest

      Fired douche, since you’re so fond of FF, maybe you’ve heard of add-ons? Anyone who wants spell check on IE can easily get it.

    • Anonymous

      That’s my company. Lol :p

    • A a

      That’s the best response you could think of for this informative article ??!!

  • Mr Lefleur

    Where did they a 30gb HDD??

    • Sparxx

      This may be a partition ))

    • Mr Lefleur

      oops dumb a$$ me, I should have thought of that. Thanks guys

    • Dragontechnology

      it’s because there is virtually no need for the majority of gov’t workstations to harbor a larger drive.  being a former net admin for the Marine Corps most of the time we had to yell at users not to add junk like music/random pictures/etc to their system because it violates a lot of our policies anyway

    • Entegy

      Or a virtual machine.

    • http://twitter.com/_dansays Daniel Clark

      Disk partitioning…

    • GP007

      It’s probably just a partition, not a 30GB HDD.

    • Mr Lefleur

      oops dumb a$$ me, I should have thought of that. Thanks guys

    • Anonymous

      Some of our government computers still have 40GB drives.  It makes no since to me since they have Core 2 Duo processors, so they are not ancient or anything.

  • Impartial

    Sorry but can someone give me real life examples on how this will make my windows experience better? Sorry for the ignorance! 

    • http://twitter.com/alexh2o Alex H

      Instant search is probably the only thing most end users would ever notice…

    • Guest

      That depends on what api’s MS exposes to the cloud and app devs. It’s not inconceivable that this could provide the basis for future drag and drop bidirectional integration between data on your desktop and an app in the cloud.

    • Anonymous

      Self-descriptive XML metadata !!!!!

    • Anonymous

      The possibilities are limitless..  Instant search/indexing, snapshot images, distributed file systems (local copy, cloud copy, remote copy… so on and so forth).  File systems play an important role in being able to deliver robust services.  ZFS on solaris comes to mind, or waffle on Netapp.  With metadata on the file system you’re disk basically is a database and with that power comes great flexibility in being able to manage everything

    • Anonymous

      “…and with great power comes great responsibility”

      sorry, I just couldn’t resist

    • Impartial

      sounds good!

  • http://www.mainstreetchatham.com/ JimmyFal

    Wow, this one has been on the back burner for a loong time, I am guessing they have been working on it all this time too. I hope this is a case of realeasing it when it is good and ready.

  • Guest

    New CSV file system perhaps (melioFS alternative)?

  • http://circuitsoft.tumblr.com CircuitSoft

    Protogon sounds better. Period.