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OSTA hosting "PlugFest" in an efforts to Ensure Broad Compatibility Among Writable Optical Storage Media

Conference Gathers the World's Leading UDF Software Developers to Achieve Compatibility Among Various UDF Implementations

SANTA BARBARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 31, 2000-- The Optical Storage Technology Association (OSTA), in its ongoing effort to ensure the long-term use and compatibility of writable optical storage technologies, today announced "UDF Plugfest 2," a follow-up event building on the success of OSTA's inaugural UDF Plugfest.

Scheduled for March 15-17, and hosted by Apple Computer in Cupertino, Calif., UDF Plugfest 2 will gather the key Universal Disk Format (UDF) software developers to identify remaining incompatibilities among their UDF implementations by exchanging and testing each other's products. The event enables developers to document UDF incompatibilities and work together to resolve these issues.

OSTA's initial Plugfest convened twenty-one of the industry's premier UDF software developers in October at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratories in Pasadena, Calif., to begin investigating UDF compatibility issues. The types of media exchanged during this initial event included CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-RAM, MO, and hard disks across platforms such as Windows 98, Windows NT, Macintosh OS, IBM workstations, and Sun workstations. When an incompatibility surfaced, the participants documented the problem and began to explore how the issue could be resolved. All participants agreed that the gathering was beneficial and that subsequent events should be convened to build on the momentum achieved during the initial October meeting.

OSTA's UDF Compliance Subcommittee will mediate the three-day UDF Plugfest 2 in March, which is expected to be attended by the companies that participated in the initial gathering, including Adaptec, Aplix, Apple, Asimware, B.H.A., Hitachi, IBM, JPL, K-Par, Matsushita, MicroDesign, Microsoft, Open Interface, Philips, Ricoh, Smart Storage, Software Architects, Sun Microsystems, Tracer, U.S. Design, and Veritas. Other UDF product developers interested in participating in the event are encouraged to contact OSTA at 805-963-3853.

Developed by OSTA's File Interchange Committee, UDF is a file system specification adopted across the optical storage industry for use on CD-R, CD-RW, DVD and other drives, to assure interchangeability of writable optical media. By facilitating an open forum where software developers can address the UDF specification and compatibility issues, OSTA is taking another step in protecting consumer interests and investments in recordable media and its content as they upgrade to newer drives.

"One of the biggest benefits of the UDF Plugfest is that software developers have a chance to meet each other face-to-face to discuss compatibility issues and learn how their products interact with other products in the marketplace," said Mike McMurdie, software engineering manager, Adaptec, and chairman of the File Interchange Committee.

"Overall, the initial meeting indicated that things are going well as far as compatibility is concerned. Vendors can now convene at Plugfest 2 with a better understanding of the necessary elements for increasing the compatibility between various products."

"The initial meeting was a great step forward in helping to identify where we as an industry have been successful with our UDF implementations -- and also where we could use some improvement," said Jack Valois, Apple. "I'm looking forward to attending the upcoming Plugfest 2 to see first-hand the progress the industry has made as a result of the information exchanged at the initial event."

OSTA Background

The Optical Storage Technology Association (OSTA) was incorporated as an international trade association in 1992 to promote the use of writable optical technologies and products for storage of computer data. The organization's membership includes optical product manufacturers and resellers from three continents, representing more than 85 percent of worldwide writable optical product shipments. They work to shape the future of the industry through regular meetings of CD/DVD, file interchange, market development, magneto-optical and planning committees.

Interested companies worldwide are invited to join the organization and participate in its programs by contacting an OSTA representative at +1 805/963-3853, by fax +1 805/962-1541 or by addressing its Web site at

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