Hands on: It’s all write now
Many people coming to Linux for the first time will be dual-booting with a Windows XP installation on their hard drive. Those who use Linux day-to-day might still want to boot into Windows for a specific application they need. For these people some compatibility with NTFS, one of the filesystems Windows uses, is particularly useful.
For many years Linux has supported full read-only support for NTFS. Unlike open filesystems such as ext3 and Reiserfs, NTFS is closed and proprietary and has had to be reverse-engineered. This has meant limited write support, which until relatively recently has been considered too risky for any use besides testing and development. The good news is that things have moved on a lot.