Sun confirms OS X Leopard file system switch

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Sun confirms OS X Leopard file system switch

'Infinite' file system enables Time Machine backup feature.

Sun Microsystems chief executive has revealed that Apple will be using ZFS as the file system for the forthcoming OS X 10.5 Leopard that is due for launch in October.

At a company event in Washington DC on Wednesday, Schwartz said that Apple will officially reveal the technology at its World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) that is scheduled for San Francisco next week.

Sun's Solaris is the world's first 128-bit file system, supporting 18 billion times the storage capacity of a current-generation 64-bit system. A zettabyte is equal to 1,024 exabytes or 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 bytes.

Sun developed the technology and has released it under an open source license. The file system is currently deployed in Sun's Solaris operating system.

The file system promises improved data integrity through a combination of features over Apple's current Journaled HFS+ file system. The technology does not overwrite data on a disk like current generation file systems, but saves the new data first and then deletes the information that it replaces.

These features are likely to power abilities that let users restore documents and their operating system to a previous state. It also keeps a complete copy of all data on a second hard drive that functions. In case of a hard drive failure the user simply swaps out the broken drive for a new one and can continue to use the system without restoring any backups. 

Sun touted Apple's plans to use ZFS in April 2006 in a mailing list.

Apple didn't respond to a request for comment. The company as a policy doesn't comment on products before they are released.
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