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1 • Ubuntu and Kubuntu 11.10 (by tdockery97 on 2011-10-24 09:51:39 GMT from United States) |
I enjoyed the review Jesse, and have to agree with your points on Kubuntu. It was done really well with just minor areas that can still use improvement. As far as Ubuntu, the first thing I did with it was install Gnome Shell to try that out as I'm still not a Unity fan. Actually not much of a Gnome Shell fan either. I did want to see what could be done with the Gnome Classic option on 11.10, and was very surprised that with some selected extensions and the Gnome Tweak Tool, you can have the comfort of the Gnome 2.32 desktop along with the feeling of running a more modern version of the distribution. Maybe this time Ubuntu has come up with something for everyone.
2 • Ubuntu (by Sayth on 2011-10-24 10:20:36 GMT from Australia)
My gripe with the last 2 Ubuntu 11.04 and 11.10 releases is with the overlay scroll bars, its something that needs refinement. I have a large collection of PDF's I read. I consistently find that its very hard to continuously scroll smoothly when reading, it tends to "pull" the pages quickly.
To me its the small the things like this that stop me enjoying the new ubuntu direction, I love the business concept behind ubuntu & unity, really I do when paired with wayland they may be able to captilise on the growing tablet/netbook/portable market in the future.
I am hoping LTS resolves the little unity niggles.
3 • desktop environments (by ix on 2011-10-24 10:29:45 GMT from Romania)
I don't like Gnome 3 (I just can't use it), I don't like KDE 4 (too bloated), I don't like Unity (I can't configure it). So, what remains? XFCE (it's decent), LXDE (I like it) and the window managers. Personally, I like LXDE (openbox) and fluxbox. The good part is that we have a choice. Have a nice day.
4 • RE: RS And FSF (by CliffyB on 2011-10-24 10:57:54 GMT from United States)
Thank you for stating something I`ve felt strongly about for years, but no one in the Linux community will seem to admit. If "freedom" means banning someone else`s right to use something then it`s not freedom at all.
5 • GNU?!?!?!?!?!?? (by Adonis on 2011-10-24 11:09:16 GMT from Croatia)
i wonder why do some people hold on to that ancient and false idea that all about open source is about stallman and one needs to put GNU in front of everything.
we remember stallman as one of the key components in the history of open source.
if it wasn't for closed source and proprietary flash, adobe reader, codecs and some other stuff i would never use linux anyway.
6 • KDE/LINUX (by Adonis on 2011-10-24 11:12:31 GMT from Croatia)
it would be far more accurate to call system Xorg/KDE/LINUX than GNU/linux anyway.
7 • @5 (by Gustavo on 2011-10-24 11:12:32 GMT from Brazil)
"if it wasn't for closed source and proprietary flash, adobe reader, codecs and some other stuff i would never use linux anyway."
8 • ubuntu, unity and gnome3 (by mutulica on 2011-10-24 11:17:01 GMT from Austria)
Hello everybody and greetings from the jungle, where I am living to. I just wont to say a big "thank you!” to all the developers of ubuntu/unity/gnome3! You did a great job, all the monkeys I work with it loves it. In the past they couldn't do nothing at the computers in our village, you now, because of their small brain... But now, thanks to this new and revolutionary trend, they are watching videos, listening music, showing pictures and do much more things. Computing its now so easy, you need only one finger and a generously bank account to pay for all the free stuff... Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
9 • freedom (by ix on 2011-10-24 11:24:48 GMT from Romania)
Is true freedom the freedom to enslave? Or can freedom only make you free?
I don't believe anyone should have the freedom to enslave, so I'm with the FSF on this one, although I use some non-Free stuff, like flash and other things.
If "enslavement" seems a bit harsh, just replace it with "restricting freedom".
10 • Ubuntu 11.10 (by Microlinux on 2011-10-24 11:28:55 GMT from France)
Thanks for the detailed review, Jesse. I fully agree with your views on Ubuntu 11.10. Two days ago I had to do a public conference about migrating from Windows to Linux, and I wouldn't inflict my main distro (Slackware 13.37) to a newbie audience. A developer friend of mine (who started out himself on Slackware 1.0 back in 1993) recommended I give Ubuntu 11.10 a shot. I had a couple of hours before the conference to get a little acquainted with it. I must say, I was just astonished by how smooth things went. In fact, I enjoyed the experience so much (a bit like a cook who finds himself actually liking an industrial cheeseburger brand) that I left it on one of my laptops.
11 • Kororaa & Neptune (by Joe on 2011-10-24 11:31:35 GMT from United States)
I downloaded the newly released versions of both of the above (Neptune v 2.0, Kororaa v 15.1) and md5 sums on both were different than posted on the distirbutions' sites. A second download got the same result.
I have seen nothing about this on either site's homepage or forum. Anyone get the "correct" md5 or sha1 sum?
12 • #7 (by zykoda on 2011-10-24 11:43:23 GMT from United Kingdom)
With Open source, there are few of us capable of successfully using sources to good effect without deleterious consequences except in the most trivial way. To burrow down into the internals of the Fermi-like onion requires considerable knowledge and expertease. So Open/Closed Source matters not to most users. Even which OS one uses is of little consequence. For the enlightened guru, with time and energy to spare Open source provides some entertainment. Self deception can play an important role in OS choice. Without being iconoclastic it would good to survey the reasons why OS choices are truthfully made.
13 • Jesse opinions (by Ariel on 2011-10-24 11:45:13 GMT from Argentina)
I totally agree with you, somehow they promote freedom for everyone, buuuuuuut if you have even a slight different opinion about their philosophy they curse you, so what kind of freedom is that??. I'm sorry RMS, but real world is not that idealist.
14 • LibreOffice (by Ajeet on 2011-10-24 11:47:09 GMT from United Kingdom)
While it is nice to hear the developers broadening the platform availability, I wish they would focus on rectifying an issue which has existed since OO's inception... The GUI, which still looks like something from Windows 98, really hope a GUI overhaul is due at some point soon.
15 • RE: 3 (by Blue Knight on 2011-10-24 11:48:07 GMT from France)
No, we have not really the choice. In 2011 we need a real, complete, desktop, so, no Window Managers.
- GNOME 3 and Unity are just crap.
- XFCE is always "never there yet" and unprofessional for me and other things too (e.g. it still feels like Win95 or maybe Win98. Its inability to display the desktop icon titles with a transparent background (and shadowed/outlined text for improved visibility over the wallpaper) is simply a decision to stick to 1995! Also, after using KDE4 and its Dolphin, I find Thunar limited. You also have to spend "2 hours setup" for it starts looking like a decent thing...)
- LXDE, I don't like and it is still buggy...
So the only choice is KDE 4 which is now better and stable. But in the future, with the always changing nature of the Linux world, maybe even KDE will no more an option.
Choice, you said choice? The choice to use Linux/BSD or Windows is the only real choice...
16 • Ubuntu 11.10 (by fox on 2011-10-24 11:48:42 GMT from Canada)
Although I was happy with the Unity interface on my netbook in Ubuntu 11.04, it is very nice to have the Gnome shell option in 11.10. The big advantage to it over Unity AT PRESENT are the customization options added by Gnome shell extensions. These are easy to install and easy to use, and they add options like a classic menu (configurable if the 2D option and they stay that way in 3D), task bar, menu tab, weather icon, etc. This gives you some of the previously-lost Gnome 2 options in a much more elegant desktop. I hope that such options will eventually appear in the Unity shell.
17 • Ubuntu,unity (by mandog on 2011-10-24 12:13:27 GMT from Peru)
After trying the latest crop of Ubuntus I personally find the LXDE version the best of the bunch. Unity hides to much useful info from the user like disc space in the home folder for instance, no user settings for applications by default this to me is a bad thing even for a beginner. XFCE is much improved but just does not feel comfortable. I did not try Gnome3 as I see no need as Arch seems to get things done as I like it, the same said for KDE, Ubuntu is getting to much of a mac clone which is a shame. The forums have got to the point where they they are hardly any point of asking or giving help, its more of a social club and the blind leading the blind which is a shame as the forums used to be excellent but declined from Gutsy when their was a mass migration from Ubuntu to Fedora/Arch/Slackware.
18 • Ubuntu (by CA G Rajesh on 2011-10-24 12:23:30 GMT from India)
If we could compare the Shell Vs Unity discussion with the famous Star-trek Vs Star-wars, I belong to the Gnome-Shell group. It the only think, I miss in default Ubuntu install. Even the shell is installed, I do not find it up to my mark. I find Fedora better in offering the Shell.
I find that lot of people hate Gnome-Shell. Well, I like it very much. I was an ardent KDE user before using the Shell in Fedora-15. Now, I find Shell more usable. Eagerly awaiting the next Fedora release :)
I wish that Gnome People continue to develop it and make it far better. I wish them lots of luck!
19 • Ubuntu 11.10 (by manbehindthecurtain on 2011-10-24 12:57:56 GMT from United States)
To be honest, I LIKE the Unity design. Admittedly, I have an all-in-one desktop, so I can use the touch controls. However, I also have it installed on my non-touch laptop, and I still find it easy to use and attractive to look at.
Oh, Jesse. One tip. To move and arrange icons, all you have to do is click and hold on the icon you want to move, drag it off the taskbar, then drop it back in wherever you want it. I don't know of a way to resize the icons, though, so you'll probably still have to scroll if you put quite a few on there.
20 • Ubuntu (by Anon on 2011-10-24 13:01:12 GMT from United States)
Okay, I sure it's all my fault, but my installs/upgrades since Ubuntu 10.10 have been a disaster. If you have an Nvidia card, Ubuntu appears to hate you. I end up in a 640x480 desktop, open the xorg file and there is NOTHING in it. Now how hard is it to keep a copy of the xorg file when doing an upgrade. Chances are the video card and monitors HAVE NOT CHANGED. My upgrade from 10.10 to 11.04 was a total wipe out -- lost everything and I'm not the only one that had that experience. So okay it was unity. It will be better this time, right? Same problem with 11.04 to 11.10. Why does Ubuntu even bother putting and upgrade option on the list? Why does Ubuntu give you a check box for options during install that it ignores, like no upgrades? Why do I have to wait long periods of time for a language pack, what ever the hell that is. I am a Mandriva refugee, and for all the faults with Mandriva, at least they could handle video. I'm downloading Mint as I right this. If Mint doesn't work I'm headed over to PCLinixOS, but I hate to put my eggs in the basket of pretty much one developer. Oh well...
21 • free and FOSS (by lott11 on 2011-10-24 13:01:33 GMT from Colombia)
Thank's for all your articles they are clearly light and concise.
I like to thank for that bit on free and FOSS.
Why anything having to do Linux have those connotations GPL.
Free is free it those not have attachment next to it.
Most people help someone because they are getting out of it, no it is because they like that someone.
Be it friend a acquittance or family, there is no need to place a tag to it.
Why is it that Richard can not fathom that small ideal, or for that matter most Linux users.
In helping someone I am not expecting anything out of it, well may be a thank you that is all.
Just the look on there face those it for most times, in replacing there OS I get the satisfaction ho that works too, and it doesn't crash.
But that is it, or making you friends face lite up when his car is running again, yes that is it.
Free means to me that all I mead is the glow on one's face.
That's what makes my day, the smile on the other persons face.
Thank you again for your commentaries and reviews, it is something I look for every Monday at 4 am
22 • (by Brandon Sniadajewski on 2011-10-24 13:10:02 GMT from United States)
I agree with you, Jesse. Like people say, if it's my computer, I can use it in any way I see fit. And if that means using the NVIDIA prop driver instead of nouveau to get the best performance, so be it.
23 • 11.10 Unity 3D, Slow Windows Movement Compared To 11.04 (by Bob Hinds on 2011-10-24 13:59:24 GMT from United States)
Unity in Ubuntu 11.10 is more refined than 11.04, but on my notebook computer moving windows around on the 11.10 Unity 3D desktop is much slower than 11.04.
Gnome Shell and Unity 2D do not suffer from this problem and provide snappy windows movement.
24 • Gnu vs open source (by Anonymous on 2011-10-24 14:01:14 GMT from France)
With all respect, I believe you people do not get what gnu is about. It's nice to give away your code but your code will be obsolete and will need to evolve in time. You can give away a snapshot of your code or you can give away the code with all the future improvements. The later is better for all of us. As you have noticed, we don't live in a perfect world.
I code for a living. I have to use open source software as a matter of productivity but my customers want it all. They want me to use open source software to enjoy the productivity but they don't want to give back. With gnu software, I can justify that they have to give back. With weak licensed software, they want to retain the rights. Were it not for gnu, linux would be a little known project, even less popular than BSD.
25 • @ "strange running both [desktops]" (by os2_user on 2011-10-24 14:17:09 GMT from United States)
Yes, it is, so don't! -- Look, without getting into which desktop is "better", trying to use more than one is surely foolish. Okay for reviewing I guess, but not everyday: just uses up your memory on trivia.
Now, as to which is best, that'd be OS/2's Presentation Manager, its same simple and dull but business-like scheme from 1993 or so.
Let me give two flaws found in all "modern" GUIs: 1) Most annoying: shift-click selection works /as in Windows/ on a geometric rectangle, NOT as a sequenced list. 2) An accidental double click can open multiple windows on even videos, something I've NEVER wanted to do but has wasted hours of my time, can crash a low-resources computer.
Numerous such tricks and traps are sprinkled throughout "modern" GUIs, along with numerous "features" that annoy (preview icons) and baffle (opening a hovered-on folder when only drag and drop was wanted). They've gotten beyond usable: ergonomics have yielded to "neat" ideas.
Problem is can't pick one because all are flawed in basic ways. I'd thought by now would have converged on usable commonality, but the Linux way is to keep changing, fracture the market, and it's a fatal notion. As noted above, even Linux fanatics find most of the available GUIs unusable, and aren't too happy with what remains. At least STOP CHANGING GUIs!
26 • Code licensing (by Jesse on 2011-10-24 14:24:39 GMT from Canada)
>> "It's nice to give away your code but your code will be obsolete and will need to evolve in time. You can give away a snapshot of your code or you can give away the code with all the future improvements. The later is better for all of us."
The two choices you're describing are not specific to either GPLed nor to less restrictive licenses. Yes, code may become obsolete over time and most code will need some form of maintaining or improvements. Releasing code under a less restrictive license (ie public domain or BSD-style) does not prevent the original coder or other contributors from making improvements to it. Likewise if you release a snapshot of GPLed code into the world no one is forced to maintain it.
Releasing an unmaintained snapshot of code or releasing a continuing stream of updated code does not relate to any licensing style. In both cases people can improve upon the code or abandon it as they like.
27 • Ubuntu / Kubuntu 11.10 (by rich52 on 2011-10-24 14:32:21 GMT from United States)
I tried them both. Kubuntu is good but still has some problems. The new menu in Kubuntu (not like the last version of KDE) I don't like. The old menu had a solid color bar on the left side but the new menu has a tree up above that shows you where you are at and you have to click on the directory tree in order to move back or up one menu level. I don't like this in order to navigate the menu system. I think I also couldn't move the menu bar to the 'top' of the screen but on the last KDE version I could do this and eliminate the menu at the bottom. (I'm using Fedora F15 KDE) now. Ubuntu is just OK on a laptop in 2D mode. 3D mode with Nvidia and or ATI graphics cards on a 27" LCD monitor just doesn't do anything for me. Is it better than Gnome 3? They're neck to neck I think. The Ubuntu package manager could use a shell environment like synaptic. With Categories, information, star ratings, etc. I don't like it and prefer Kubuntu's package manager over it. Overall I sticking with Fedora until I see further progress and improvements.
28 • free and FOSS (by Art on 2011-10-24 14:48:57 GMT from United States)
Good column Jesse - I agree 100%. People use an OS to do THINGS with their computer/devices and it is no one's business what they do or use - that is freedom.
I use everything from Ubuntu 10.4 LTS (with Macbuntu interface) main PC, Windows XP PC, Mac 7.5.3, Powerbook 5300 cs, and Android 2.0 (e-reader -tablet). That's me. Some people think I am nuts - that's ok - I am truly FREE.
29 • Code licensing (by Anonymous on 2011-10-24 14:49:28 GMT from France)
What I was trying to say is that some people have no choice to give back. The customers want it all. They have competitors. If they give back but the competitors don't, they are at a competitive disadvantage. So does the market work. With gnu, all the competition is on equal footing. Without GNU, you are forced by the market place to keep the code closed. Why do you think red hat contributes so much to linux? It's not out of kind heart. They enjoy the productivity of linux. They can give the code away and they can be sure competitors don't have an unfair advantage.
30 • Shell (by Tourniquette on 2011-10-24 15:36:01 GMT from United States)
I love Gnome shell, it seems like people who are trashing it just can't stand change. "Oh no! I have to click twice now!" So what? It's faster, more responsive, and better looking than the outdated Gnome 2. Plus, it's starting to show some real progress in customization and integration with web services. I've used almost all of the GUIs so far (except for some fringe ones like Ratpoison) and I gotta stick with Gnome 3. To each their own, but just cause you don't like it doesn't mean you gotta trash someones hard work that they provided to you FOR FREE.
31 • Fsf and free software (by Anonymous on 2011-10-24 15:37:47 GMT from France)
You know the expression give some fish to a man and he'll eat for one day, teach him how to fish and he'll eat all his life?
Closed source software developers give fish to people.
Open source developers teach people how to fish AND give them fish.
Free software developers (in the Fsf sense) go one step further and teach people how to teach people how to fish while also providing fish.
And then there is the Fsf. The Fsf teach people how to teach people how to teach how to fish.
32 • Kubuntu and licensing (by Jesse on 2011-10-24 15:40:02 GMT from Canada)
I see what you mean. Yes, I agree with you on the different forms of licensing and competition. In my column I wasn't trying to say the GPL is bad, quite the opposite. I think it's a good and useful license.I use it myself from time to time. Where I disagree with the FSF is that I believe people should be able to create and use non-free software if they so choose.
In short, I believe in using the best tool for the job and each person should be able to make their own choice as to which tool they prefer. If you want to use the GPL and open source exclusively, then that's great. But if I need closed-source drivers to get my video card working, I think I should have the right to use a closed source driver.
On a different topic, this didn't make it into the review, but I have found my laptop runs cooler with Kubuntu 11.10 than it did with Kubuntu 10.04. On average it appears to be running about 10 degrees Celsius cooler and the fan is running less often.
33 • Sabayon 7 Review? (by Tourniquette on 2011-10-24 15:46:12 GMT from United States)
Just realized you were on here! I haven't used this distro in a long time, not since 5, and was wondering if there's any way you could do a review over it. I haven't really heard too much about it and don't have the time, or DVDs, to install it myself, plus I'm too pumped for the Fedora 16 release. Buuuut last time I used it, Sabayon was pretty cool. Just a thought. Keep up the good work man, I look forward to DWW every week!
34 • GNU/flamefest (by Patrick on 2011-10-24 16:20:16 GMT from United Kingdom)
Congrats on stating your opinion on the whole 'GNU/' thing, Jesse. Just curious if you'd come across another option for licensing, which I think deserves a wider audience: http://unlicense.org/ ?
35 • GNU (by Patrick on 2011-10-24 16:21:35 GMT from United States)
While I do think the FSF goes a little overboard on some issues (for instance their position on binary firmware), I really don't think we'd have the Linux we have today if it wasn't for their GPL license and their rich set of userland software. Granted, it is much easier to say Linux than GNU/Linux in conversation, but I also do see their point in wanting to have their name mentioned, even more so in light of some of the inane comments posted here today. Calling GNU "history" just betrays an incredible lack of understanding of what makes their computer tick--here, now, today.
36 • Newbie on Bodhi (by Willie on 2011-10-24 16:28:50 GMT from United States)
I'm new to GNU / Linux and what I'm finding easy to use and a great performer is Bohdi Linux. The 'problem' I've had is that I have the mouse on the left side of my keyboard and I'd like to reverse the mouse buttons and slant of the cursor, but I can't get figure it out.
37 • Sabayon and unlicense (by Jesse on 2011-10-24 16:42:22 GMT from Canada)
Yes, Sabayon is on my "to review" list. I'm hoping to have a review of Sabayon 7 around the middle of next month.
Yes, I'm familiar with unlicense. Though I don't really see the point. It's basically the same as public domain. Why attach a license saying "I don't want to have a license on this" when you could just not use a license?
38 • GNU/Linux (by Magic Banana on 2011-10-24 16:55:45 GMT from Brazil)
"Many of our readers are either new to Linux or don't use it as a primary operating system. (...) People outside of the community don't know what GNU means" -> that is exactly why it is important to put the GNU!
Contrary to what I can read in these comments, the primary contribution to most distributions comes from the GNU project (what includes, GNOME, GIMP, GRUB, GCC, Bash, the coreutils, the text-processing tools such as grep, the archiving tools such as tar, etc.). It is far greater than the Linux project's contribution (essential but smaller in terms of lines of code and, even more, in terms of executed lines of code since most of them are drivers for devices you do not own). Therefore, if you find "GNU/Linux" cumbersome, call it GNU. Linux does not deserve more credit than GNU.
This would not matter that much if Linus Torvalds & co. would support GNU's philosophy but, unfortunately, it is far from being the case since, today, the Linux kernel includes proprietary code (see the Linux-Libre project).
39 • Unlicense (by sycarion on 2011-10-24 16:56:40 GMT from United States)
@37 The reason for the unlicense is that US copyright law is an opt-out system instead of the an opt-in system. In other words, anything written is automatically subject to copyright unless you state otherwise.
CC-Zero is a similar idea.
40 • The kludge of Public Domain like Licenses (by Anonymous Coward on 2011-10-24 17:07:38 GMT from United States)
@39 I do not think the US allows for opt-out either, thus the kludge of having it under copy right, with CC-Zero and unlicense allowing Public Domain like rights, since there is no modern day public domain.
41 • Ubuntu 11.10 (by Patrick on 2011-10-24 18:57:39 GMT from United States)
My experience with Ubuntu 11.10 has been a pretty bumpy ride up to now. Probably some of my problems stem from my unwise decision to do an upgrade from 11.04 to 11.10, and a clean install might not have the same issues.
* I can't get GNOME shell to run. After I install the package, and I try to log in using GNOME, the only "shell" I get is a Nautilus menu bar on top. Not very useful. Any ideas? I just read somewhere I have to somehow disable Metacity, I'll have to try to figure out how to do that when I get home.
* I can't allow my screen to go to sleep. If I do, all I get back is a black screen with a mouse cursor, and a computer that otherwise seems dead. Likely some problem with the new kernel and the dreaded Nvidia binary driver. Maybe try to disable KMS? For now I've just configured the system to not have the screen go to sleep.
* Audio recording behaves, well... funny. Something gets screwed up with the sample rate, some of the time. Other times it works. For instance, I called my parents with Skype and was told they didn't understand me because I sounded like Donald Duck. :-) I reproduced the problem with Audacity. To me, it sounded like I was a Chipmunk on speed. After several tries, it would behave normally.
Probably not all of these issues can be blamed on Ubuntu. But I kind of wish I hadn't "upgraded". :-/
42 • Linux/GNU (by fstephens on 2011-10-24 19:30:42 GMT from United States)
According to this recent analysis the GNU contribution (code, not philosophy) is overblown, accounting for no more than 8%:
With all due respect to Richard Stallman (and lots of respect IS due),
GNU/Linux is simply awkward, unnecessary, and probably inaccurate.
The FSF has enough merits of it's own to stand on; they don't need to try and co-opt the fame of Linux.
43 • Re: Linux/GNU (by uhhu on 2011-10-24 20:13:36 GMT from Finland)
According to the same analysis the Linux contribution is overblown, accounting for no more than 9 %.
Linux = kernel
Linux + GNU = operating system (or is something else needed?)
44 • GNU/FSF (by mz on 2011-10-24 20:32:53 GMT from United States)
I may in theory like open source over any other option but it has to work well if it's going to be used. It doesn't really matter what codec I would prefer to watch hulu or whatever else on my PC, the fact is it's almost always run in Adobe Flash. RMS and the FSF have some important points but things just have to work, and when it does you'll at least be free of MS Windows. In fact I've barely booted into windows at all since Flash 11 came out, and while I think a freer format might be better in theory I'm really just glad that Adobe finally made it work because I feel better about running Linux.
45 • Ubuntu (by Bill on 2011-10-24 21:08:58 GMT from United States)
I have been using Ubuntu for many years. I found 11.04 frustratingly limited, and a waste of resources put into fast equipment, huge monitors and dual monitor setups. So I abandoned it on production computers, but left it on one extra home pc. Now I, and apprently a large number of other users, find that 11.11 is unable to mount locations or retreive share lists from servers. I have spent many hours trying to solve that problem to no avail. That renders any computer on a network useless and is reason to abandon this useless os completely.
46 • If I were a developer, I think I would release my code under (L)GPL so it cannot (by Anonymous Coward on 2011-10-24 21:22:10 GMT from Spain)
The matter of the GNU thing is something that I find really funny. Someone has said that GNU stuff makes less than 8% of a usual distribution. That's right. Now I have to ask how much makes the kernel itself (just curiosity). Then you have to ask which components depend on GNU. Emacs, ls, shred, cp, mv, dd, tar, man, info and company are core components that are used a LOT, many of them have the Stallman signature and all of them make the usersland what it is. Without GNU, Linux would have become nothing. Without Linux, GNU would have become nothing.
Linux talks to the hardware. GNU talks to the user. Take a component out, and your system is useless.
I myself would simply call it "Linux", but Linux is a kernel and there are other operating systems that use it and are completely different with what most call "Linux". Many people I know though Android was a GNU/Linux like operating system because nobody makes the distinction between "GNU/Linux" and "Linux". I did never use the distinction until I realized that it could bring confusion. This confusion can be easily avoided by just appending three letters and a slash.
You can call it as you like. What's in a name? But for me there is a clear distinction between GNU and Linux. The evidence is in every Linux operating system that includes not the GNU userland. They feel completely different, because they are just "Linux", without the GNU.
47 • GPL comments (by Davey on 2011-10-24 21:28:50 GMT from United States)
Jesse, I greatly appreciate your writing but this is a very strange and annoying comment:
"But if I need closed-source drivers to get my video card working, I think I should have the right to use a closed source driver." Apparently you were criticized for not using GPL. I guess people have a right to do that. That'e no the same as trying to take away any rights to use whatever software you want.
It's ironic that you'd completely invert the reality of the situation. It's MS, Apple, and the rst of the commercial software sellers who severely restrict your right to use their software in any way than what they choose to permit. It's GPL and other libre software that lets you do whatever you want except use it to make money without contributing back. It has nothing to do with you right to use a commercial or closed-source driver. Your statement is too typical of internet discussion: whenever someone's ideas or behavior is disputed, the default is too often to revert to ranting about their right to do/say it, as a distraction from responding to the substance of the criticism.
48 • Corrections (by Anonymous Coward on 2011-10-24 21:31:53 GMT from Spain)
My browser did mess my last post.
I wanted to call the post "Licensing and (GNU/Linux)
I wanted to write too the following:
If I were a developer, I would release my software under (L)GPL, but I would not try to change the licensing models of other
FOSS software. Free licenses are made so developers and users can benefit without being restricted about the number of copies
they can have or other terms. BSD, GPL, Apache and others fullfill that goal.
After all, who writes the software has the right to decide if he wants his work relicensed by a third party or not.
49 • GNU/Linux or just Linux? (by O H DUM BA on 2011-10-24 21:53:41 GMT from United States)
GNU is important, but Linux is the kernel that made the GNU stuff work. GNU got their stuff from BSDs & unix, they GNU'ed them. For a good while they wanted their name attached to Linux distributions, ie., Debian GNU/Linux, Knoppix GNU/Linux, ..., etc. Ubuntu, Fedora, OpenSuse, .., et others do not ADD the GNU. Then other folks like Xorg want to attach themselves too! Xorg is important so we get Xorg/GNU/Linux.
A real pioneer who does not get the recognition that is deserved is Donald E. Knuth. He is the chief inventor of TeX. Tex is free and can also be commercial. He released the code and is one of the firsts to share his code.
GNU attaching itself is BULLYING! Nothing more and nothing else. Check the pages out and report back in case you have questions.
I hope you can understand. Yes GNU is important, but why does it want to attach to a universal standard? then everyone else would want to attach, i.e, xorg/gnu/gcc/mplayer/vlc/xine/LibreOffice/ ... Linux
50 • GNU and the GPL (by Jesse on 2011-10-24 22:23:30 GMT from Canada)
>> " Apparently you were criticized for not using GPL. I guess people have a right to do that. That'e no the same as trying to take away any rights to use whatever software you want."
I think you misunderstood what I was talking about. When I said I should have the right to use a closed source driver to get my video card working it was in response to people like RMS saying people shouldn't use non-free software. The FSF has a free software or nothing philosophy. (http://www.gnu.org/distros/free-system-distribution-guidelines.html) And I'm all for using free software. I try to do so as much as possible. However, if a free driver isn't available, I will use a closed-source driver. The FSF is opposed to using non-free drivers even if there are no working free drivers available.
>> "It's ironic that you'd completely invert the reality of the situation. It's MS, Apple, and the rst of the commercial software sellers who severely restrict your right to use their software in any way than what they choose to permit. It's GPL and other libre software that lets you do whatever you want except use it to make money without contributing back. "
Yes, closed-source vendors want to restrict software freedom. That's true and I completely agree. I'm not arguing against that. What I was saying in my article and following comments was that my definition of software freedom and the FSF definition of software freedom are slightly different. The FSF campaigns against non-free solutions and I think any and all options should be available to users. Additionally the GPL puts more restrictions on developers than some other free licenses, I prefer a less restrictive license.
Now, I agree the GPL is a good license and the restrictions put in place are with good intent. However, I like placing as few limits as possible on developers. I suppose you might say restrictions put in place by closed-source licenses are there for bad reasons and restrictions on GPLed software are for good reasons, but they're still restrictions.
You're mistaken about the GPL not allowing developers to make money unless they contribute back. It's entirely within the scope of the GPL to sell GPLed software without contributing code. It's not polite, but it's entirely possible. You can technically repackage a GPLed project and sell it to people without contributing anything to the code.
51 • GNU/Linux vs. Linux/GNU (by JoeFootball on 2011-10-24 22:25:54 GMT from United States)
As long as we're splitting hairs, if not just "Linux", then it should really be "Linux/GNU" rather than Mr. Stallman's "GNU/Linux" proclamation, given that it's the Linux kernel that spins up first, then the GNU packages that load on top of it.
That said, I'm personally very comfortable with just saying "Linux", and equally comfortable with others saying "GNU/Linux" or "Linux/GNU" or whatever they please.
52 • New AMD cpu test on Ubuntu (by geekboula on 2011-10-24 23:09:44 GMT from Canada)
The new AMD FX-8150 Bulldozer tested on Ubuntu. You can see it here http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=amd_fx8150_bulldozer&num=1
Last 2 week I read another test on Windows 7 and the result is more less performance.
On Linux is the best alternative price performance
53 • GNU+Linux (by Sean on 2011-10-24 23:36:55 GMT from Canada)
I'm in the camp that calls it GNU+Linux. I used FreeBSD before GNU+Linux, and the FreeBSD OS is a kernel, userspace tools, etc. A complete system. So is GNU. Linux is a kernel only, and is used as the kernel for a lot of GNU+Linux systems. Aside from that technicality, RMS gave up what would probably have been a very lucrative career in coding proprietary software, vowing instead to uphold the freedom of computer users everywhere. If you think the GPL is restrictive, compare it to your local police, and government. The goverment exists to preserve the freedom of people through law, and the police are to enforce that law. Rules that do impose restrictions, but are required for the wellbeing of everyone. The GPLv3 was intensely researched and scrutinized before being released to the public, with the sole intent of protecting the public at large from evil individuals who wish to hold power over everyone through the software they provide. If nothing else, saying GNU+Linux or GNU/Linux is respectful to the GNU project and the man who sacrificed a lot for the system we enjoy today.
54 • ONLY the GPL? (by Arkanabar on 2011-10-24 23:51:05 GMT from United States)
I'm going to disagree with RMS and go with the OpenBSD guys: use of licenses other than the GPL, or software not so licensed, does NOT inherently imply an ethically invalid choice. I'm on my way into the Health IT field, and I will recommend free software solutions, with one main reason being (as Fred Trotter says) that your vendor cannot ever hold your data hostage, and also that VistA (public domain, and also GPL) is one of the most mature, most powerful EHR solutions available today. However, I know the reality: clinicians will probably choose whatever will work best for billing, appears to have the shallowest learning curve, or otherwise seems most familiar. As a result, I use what I expect to encounter in the field. And that means I have to have a captive OS, captive software, and a captive nomenclature.
55 • cont'd (by Arkanabar on 2011-10-24 23:54:58 GMT from United States)
And my use of those captive solutions is NOT inherently unethical.
56 • @53 (by O H DUM BA on 2011-10-24 23:55:30 GMT from United States)
I am sorry but I do not agree with you~. Yes it is already there!
Gnu/Linux when you do a uname -a on a linux system, but there are other tools too! and they also want to be attached, ie, xorg is an important part of the programs in GNU+Linux systems, so are we going to have to honor them too?
now we are going to become xorg+gnu+linux? then mysql, apache, libreoffice, .., etc other imortant programs will also want to be important. I have a friend that has been in Free Software/Open Source since the beginnings, there was no linux, there was GNU, but with no kernel, they copied/stole BSD/UNIX programs, like the cp/tar/ls/..., that are now important in GNU and then got Linus Torvalds's kernel and made the tools/toolchain that was pieced together to form Linux/GNU, GNU+Linux systems that you are discussing. Without *BSD*/UNIX, SOLARIS and other specialized unix based systems, GNU would be nothing. SO are you going to also give credit to them? Also Dennis Ritchie was very important in the creation of C & C++ along with Unix/BSD/etc, he in my opinion is bigger than RMS, why does not he get the credit he deserves? Like I say, Donald E Knuth is also a free software pioneer that gave tex for free, he should also be mentioned. The GNU tools you mention were original tools for Solaris/BSD OSes and they copied them over. If you want to give credit, they also deserve to be mentioned. Linux is good and all, I like it too, but for me BSDs are better(license wise and work very well) and don't come with strings attached. The kernel + tools + applications all come together and one team handles this, while with linux, your particular distro does things.
You mention the freedom that RMS gives, why doesn't he just give up and let people call the system whatever they like? He nor other FSF evangelists can force users to call systems GNU/Linux. I don't like bullies, he is a BULLY, and he says you can't/shouldn't put * on your computer because of *, then it is my computer and I can put whatever I want on it. Plain and simple.
If you want a good license, the BEERWARE license, or the BSD License are the best licenses that exist. I don't know about the CDDL too much, but many folks like it because it is not restrictive like the GPL.
57 • Firefox/Xorg/Whatever/GNU/Linux (by Anonymous Coward on 2011-10-25 00:28:45 GMT from Spain)
There is a reason because we don't append all the names of every piece of software to Linux.
Firefox, Libreoffice and the like are not components of the basic operating system, and trying to compare them with the GNU stuff is not very clever. Substitute Firefox and you wil have the same operating system. Substitute GNU and you will have other thing.
58 • BSD Router Project (by Adam on 2011-10-25 01:28:36 GMT from Japan)
I think the BSD Router Project is the most significant item in this week's news.
As awesome as DD-WRT and Tomato may be, sometimes the hardware you have to work with simply isn't supported, and so there's always reason to welcome other options.
59 • Must call it "free software" (by Candide on 2011-10-25 01:36:13 GMT from Taiwan)
I guess I'll add my 2 cents on this great GNU/Linux debate...
I attended one of Richard Stallman's speeches a few years back. He was entertaining and articulate, and I really appreciated what he had to say about software patents (Ie they suck). I also had the opportunity to ask him a few questions, and he gave really good answers.
But as far as I'm concerned, he fell flat when insisting that we must say "GNU/Linux" and never just "Linux" (unless we're specifically referring to the kernel). Furthermore, he also let us known that we always must say "free software" and never "open source." He spent quite a bit of time dwelling on these two points.
Well, much as I respect all that Richard Stallman has done for the free software movement, I do get really annoyed by his attempt to impose a speech ban on terms he doesn't approve of. In fact, it struck me as just plain childish. And largely futile, since people will use the terms they are most comfortable with.
Linux (sorry) geeks tend to be rather rebellious individuals, and don't normally take well to being told what to do or say. I should think that Richard Stallman would know that.
60 • Review of 'buntus... (by KevinC on 2011-10-25 01:55:54 GMT from United States)
I feel almost the same about Kubuntu 11.10---your review was spot-on. It has a few flaws, but, for the most part, I really like it (liked 11.04 as well). Haven't tried Ubuntu. Ran Xubuntu 11.10 for awhile and it was ok and while I like XFCE, it still feels kinda large---tbh it's hard to tell a real performance difference b/ween it and Gnome 2 (I must add that I have been running leaner distros, such as Salix, and XFCE is much more lightweight feeling therein). I must agree w/ 17, tho, Lubuntu is really nice. LXDE is really starting to become a polished DE...and is genuinely lightweight. Jesse, you should really consider reviewing Lubuntu.
61 • GNU/linux and the *buntu's and mobile devices (by wormy on 2011-10-25 02:53:12 GMT from United States)
Why is "Linux" more common than "GNU/Linux" or the "GNU" part?
Linux sounds cool, is easy to pronounce.
GNU sounds weird and no one knows how to pronounce it on first encounter.
Branding is just as important in the non-commercial world as the commercial if one is attempting to achieve any measure of popularity. May be sad, but it's true.
As far as the *buntus go, I gave up with Unity and KDE. The point of a desktop is for it to act like a "desktop." Meaning a place to stick stuff so it's out in front. If I want to stick a bunch of files or program launchers, it should be easy. This has been lost since the demise of Gnome 2 and KDE 3. I am using XFCE on LMDE now, but somewhat unhappily. As mentioned above, it just doesn't feel "polished."
As far as mobile devices, I have been sorely disappointed in the abuse of the GPL'd Linux kernel in Android (see Honeycomb--may conform to the letter, but not the spirit) and have hopes for Tizen, but not high ones (see Meego).
62 • Joli OS (by FitzLT on 2011-10-25 07:32:41 GMT from United States)
After reading many comments about people being dissatisfied with Unity, Gnome, KDE and XFCE--I just want to tell everyone again to try Joli OS. I never had any desire to try it until my dad's laptop was upgraded to 11.04 and slowed down horribly. I waited until the upgrade to 11.10 to see if the improvements would speed things up a little...they didn't. I installed Joli OS on his laptop and it moved like it used to before Ubuntu switched to Unity. Then I installed Joli OS on my own laptop and I haven't looked back since.
Give it a shot--you just might be surprised.
63 • Gnu vs linux (by Anonymous on 2011-10-25 09:19:21 GMT from France)
A lot of people seem confused about Gnu.
It's not the same thing as firefox or xorg. They didn't steal anything from unix either. They reimplemented it, just like linux. They reimplemented it better may I add.
Moreover, grub is launched before linux and you need gcc to compile linux. Pretty much every single application need glibc to run. All those tools are part of gnu. Gnu can compile itself. It's the base of the operating system.
Those are just technicalities but for the sake of correctness it has to be understood.
What is more important is that gnu is not just an operating system. It's also a philosophy. If you adhere to this philosophy, then you should mention gnu because that is what carries the philosophy. When you mention linux, you just talk about a good kernel that has many good technical aspects, but you don't mention the philosophy behind it. If you want to promote free software then you should mention gnu.
It is important because a lot of vendors surf the hype of linux while spitting on free software. Had gnu been hyped as much as linux, we would have a very different software landscape today.
64 • Lubuntu/Xubuntu review too? (by Michael J King on 2011-10-25 10:01:37 GMT from United Kingdom)
It would be nice to see a Lubuntu and Xubuntu comparison in the same way as the Ubuntu /Kubuntu review,
65 • GNU (by whocares on 2011-10-25 14:39:46 GMT from Finland)
Linux is linux is linux and not GNU/whatever...........Like Linus has sometime said
66 • GNU (by Landor on 2011-10-25 15:02:48 GMT from Canada)
Post #63 is the best I've seen this week, and far more accurate than the opinion section, which while was stated as opinion only, completely excluded a large portion of the facts, and led the readers to believe certain aspects that were spelled out, but intended with innuendo. Like the FSF tells you that you cannot use something. By saying you wouldn't tell someone they couldn't use flash (which that should be clarified since gnash plays flash now almost perfectly in my experience) implies, and fosters a widely believe untruth about the FSF and Richard Stallman specifically, that they do.
The truth of the matter is this, you always read 'if'. 'If you want freedom.'
Speaking of freedom as well, there's misconceptions about freedoms too, that again the reader is led to follow that train of though without specifically saying it. While one reader here states that they run whatever operating system they like and they are truly free. That and many other comments show that the person really has no concept of the meaning behind it at all.
Sadly, this is what DWW has become, numbers have been low again , especially here in the comments section, so a topic like this is written to drum up business so to speak. I'm truly finding less and less reason to come here, and participate just because of that.
Keep your stick on the ice...
67 • RE: 66 correction (by Landor on 2011-10-25 15:04:13 GMT from Canada)
certain aspects that were 'not' spelled out*
Keep your stick on the ice...
68 • GNU (by Patrick on 2011-10-25 15:11:56 GMT from United States)
Just a quick comment to think about, for all those who "don't care" about GNU. If all GNU software would disappear from your PC tomorrow, tell me what you would do with your PC. Keep the line below the comment box in mind before you hit submit.
69 • Still misunderstanding (by RRR on 2011-10-25 15:34:14 GMT from United States)
"People use an OS to do THINGS with their computer/devices and it is no one's business what they do or use - that is freedom."
And you're being tracked by corporations the time. It is their business, read the EULA.
"Had gnu been hyped as much as linux, we would have a very different software landscape today."
Yeah, the powers that be wouldn't know everything about us- FB wouldn't have our contact list out of our phone, apps on our phone wouldn't know more about our whereabouts than our wives/mothers.
70 • GNU/Linux (by petrek on 2011-10-25 15:41:18 GMT from Poland)
Why not go for some compromise and wordplay, and call it Lignux, with silent g? ;)
71 • GNU/Linux (by petrek on 2011-10-25 15:41:31 GMT from Poland)
Comment deleted (duplicate post).
72 • Sorry for double post (by petrek on 2011-10-25 15:43:33 GMT from Poland)
Comment deleted (off-topic).
73 • Kubuntu 11.10 (by Leo on 2011-10-25 16:06:25 GMT from United States)
A bunch of us wrote about Kubuntu 11.10 in the previous Distrowatch. In a nutshell, Kubuntu 11.10 is very nice, if you can stay away from nepomuk and akonadi (which means, no desktop search and no KDEPIM). I wish KDE would refocus into creating a great Plasma experience, a solid API, and offer a range of light solutions from servers to phones. Kubuntu should definitely use Plasma desktop, but choose a different PIM suite, or individual programs. And also offer a chromebook like interface (simple, minimal, web based)
74 • Some Linuxes are NOT GNU/Linux (by klu9 on 2011-10-25 17:58:00 GMT from Mexico)
IIRC, some Linux-based operating systems (especially lighter/smaller ones) don't use GNU. For example (IIRC) Puppy uses Busybox, not GNU. Android uses Bionic C, not GNU.
Perhaps the Stallmanites would be satisfied if Distrowatch's slogan was changed from:
"Put the fun back into computing. Use Linux, BSD."
"Put the fun back into computing. Use GNU/Linux, Busybox/Linux, Bionic C/Linux, GNU/kFreeBSD, FreeBSD (which isn't *really* free because people can use BSD code in ways the FSF doesn't deem "free"), NetBSD (another splitter/traitor to the Cause) and OpenBSD (don't even get us started on that one!)".
75 • Online tracking (by Leo on 2011-10-25 21:04:10 GMT from United States)
A bit off topic, but in full acknowledge of what many of you are expressing as a concern
The other day I was browsing some shoes on zappos.com in my kubuntu netbook, in the living room. Two minutes later I sat down in the kubuntu PC in the dining room, and opened a page. An ad showed on the page on the desktop, showing me the exact same shoes I had looked at in the netbook. Not a good feeling, no.
76 • The missing "GNU/" (by Joey on 2011-10-25 22:05:46 GMT from Romania)
I as a relatively new Linux user understand your point of view on licensing and it is your right to do whatever you want with your software since you created.
Perhaps the GPL guy just wanted to point out that corporations would thrive on cases such as the one you described and the software you released could be claimed as ownership by them. What would it be like if you created this great kernel named Linux and Mr. Gates went and licensed it's code incriminating all free and non-licensed use? FSF is a bit rough in some aspects too, but that doesn't mean they are not after the same thing as you. After all, they had good contributions to this new world of "free speech and free beer" (GNU + Open Source) and you can still make room for money (if I am not wrong, 2 examples: R.S. GNU E-macs and RedHat... they did well and still do, following the same principles).
Still, you are right to point out the practicality of it all and the more experienced users will realize the missing GNU and its contributions.
It would also be a good time for the guys from FSF to complete their old kernel and to have the really 100% complete GNU OS. If it is stable enough, we'll see Linux replaced fully with that prefix.
Thank you for your great contribution and I only hope to do the same when I will have the knowledge.
77 • @63 & @74 (by BUMMER on 2011-10-25 22:25:42 GMT from United States)
If there would be no GNU, there is and always has been Freebsd/Netbsd/OpenBSD/etc. Why make something bigger than what it is?
thanks to 74 :) There are examples where GNU is not needed! there's busybox, there is Bionic C, and now there is CLANG compiler where there is no need for GNUisms!
As for attachments in post 63! without gnu or with GNU, there is still MR. GATES OS at the top, even with free and better OSes, how do you compete against it?
HURD is almost complete, but it lacks the features, the great things that have been added by many programmers to linux :) linux is a toy OS according to some :(
Also look at Debian/KFreeBSD, they use the GNU tools, and the FreeBSD kernel. They were advocates of adding the GNU/Linux name to honor the GNU project, if it is so GREAT, how come they use FreeBSD kernels? and not Linus's one?
78 • Netbooks... Genbooks... (by Baltazar on 2011-10-25 22:33:23 GMT from Puerto Rico)
Has any one of you, more adventures, tried to install Linux on them ARM netbooks. More specifically on a Genbook 108...
I have read somewhat about it been done on other ARM devices, but it seems to be new turf. I am interested on this possibility because netbooks with android suck, plus the maker of the Genbooks went the way of the dodo, Augen... so I think, maybe them Genbooks could be more productive with a real Linux in them...
The tricky part is the installation because of them been imbedded hardware... or something along the lines...
Is it possible? ... Linux would make them netbooks usable!
79 • Freedom and other such nonsense (by DavidEF on 2011-10-25 23:29:58 GMT from United States)
Lots of comments here today about Stallman, FSF, GNU, and Linux! It seems to me most posters missed the whole point of the opinion piece. But, here are my opinions, to add fuel to the fire.
Stallman doesn't use the standard definition of freedom. He wants you to be locked into *HIS* definition of freedom. Put whatever spin on it that you can, but ultimately he is about taking away choice. He doesn't want users to be free, he only cares about the code being free. In fact, free code isn't what he wants, either. He only wants us to use GPL'd code, which is actually more restrictive than several other free code licences that are available.
I think that users should be free first, to use what works best for them. When GPL'd code is available that does as well or better than non-GPL'd code, then I don't have a problem with using it. I think that is also what Jesse was trying to get across in the article (correct me if I'm wrong, Jesse).
Now, about that GNU/Linux debate. I really like post #74 by klu9. I agree whole-heartedly with those who say it is an unnecessary burden to have to say GNU/Linux, when just saying Linux will get the point across. Think of it like a person who uses their middle name instead of their first name. I know several people, my wife included, who almost never hear their first name mentioned, and yet don't have a problem answering to the name they are used to hearing. So, just *maybe* "GNU/Linux" really IS the proper name. Why should it matter if just "Linux" is the name we hear?
80 • RE: 79 (by Landor on 2011-10-26 02:02:06 GMT from Canada)
It matters to the people who developed the software.
Also, while all of you are saying it doesn't matter that it doesn't matter, something I've pointed out before here, and also written about it on my blog, that I have no doubt the auther of the opinion article purposely left out knowing full well about it; Linus Torvalds himself, who talked down Richard Stallman and his desire for the GNU/LInux name debate, 'publicly', let me say that again, 'publicly' said it wasn't right and was very upset that Google refused to add 'Linux' to the Android name, as in: Linux/Android, Android/Linux. Different story when the shoe is on the other foot eh?
Google should give credit where credit is deserved, as should The Linux Kernel. Also, just one more point, that again wasn't expressed. When Richard Stallman speaks of a GNU/Linux distribution that uses GNU applications, that is when it should be clearly stated. When it's one that doesn't, or the kernel by itself, it's no problem calling it Linux on its own.
People really should be a bit more informed before letting articles that have purposely left out crucial pump them out to the point where they themselves are just spreading the same hyperbole. It does nothing for the advancement of this community, in any form. Nor do the type of articles like this opinion piece. Pure page hits, nothing more.
Keep your stick on the ice...
81 • GPL (by Jonathan Vasquez on 2011-10-26 04:16:34 GMT from United States)
This is why I don't advocate the GPL license anymore. It's like a religion to them.
Software is for us to achieve our goals. Human beings are the most important part. The authors of the code. I'm not for empowering code. Code is not a living entity (in my eyes). Therefore the authors have completely control of what they want to do with their code.
If they want to give it out for free so anyone can use it however they want, then no problem. If you want to license it under GPL and restrict peoples freedoms to change the license to preserve other freedoms, then ok, that is your decision.
FSF should be freaking happy that people even give out code for free in the first place. If people didn't give out code in public domain or any other Open Source (or Free Software) license, then it would all be closed source, and nobody would win (and that's also the FSF's worst enemy right ... closed software?)
82 • @ 5 (by Akuna on 2011-10-26 05:34:16 GMT from France)
"if it wasn't for closed source and proprietary flash, adobe reader, codecs and some other stuff i would never use linux anyway."
Really? Oh well...
More seriously, if it was not for GNU, the GPL and RMS, no one would use Linux, to the extend it is used today.
And the other way around equally holds true, without Linux, probably no one would use GNU to the extend it is used today.
Why oppose essential players of a same great teamwork?
It doesn't mean we necessarily have to agree with every single thing advocated by RMS and the FSF, (or by Linus for that matter) but certainly... all deserves due respect and credit of some form or another. in spite of some quirks every human is bound to have.
We owe them all a lot! Them, and so many others, unnamed here, who believe in sharing and cooperation under some form or another.
Before belittling any of those guys, which is sooo easy to do with a couple strokes on the keyboard and a couple clever words, let's attempt to contribute even if only a tiny fraction of what they have done.
Then maybe, just maybe, we might have something informative to say.
83 • GPL (by ix on 2011-10-26 06:07:55 GMT from Romania)
It makes me laugh when people say that GPL restricts freedom. GPL does not restrict freedom, it ensures that the code will remain free and anything that is added to it will also be free.
How can other licenses give more freedom? If you believe that freedom means being able to take that code and make it part of non-free software, then you are wrong. Freedom is not the ability to be non-free, but the ability to be free forever.
84 • @74 (by Anonymous on 2011-10-26 06:32:41 GMT from France)
What about MenuetOS, ReactOS, SkyOS, Aros, Syllabe, Debian GNU/Hurd, OpenIndiana etc? Those are not linux nor BSD.
So you would say what?
"Put the fun back into computing. Use MenuetOS, ReactOS, SkyOS, Aros, Syllabe, Hurd, Solaris, Linux, BSD?"
This is an absurd example but it illustrates that your argument was equally absurd.
Actually most of the systems you cited use GNU, one way or another. They most probably use autotools, gcc and grub, but that is just another technicality. Linux itself uses the GNU license and the GNU compiler.
GNU conveys much more than just technicalities.
So what about:
"Put the fun back into computing. Use GNU, linux, BSD"?
85 • Quick Question (by FitzLT on 2011-10-26 07:13:34 GMT from United States)
Just out of curiosity...what's wrong with NetBSD? Are you referring to the whole Wasabi company thing?
What about OpenBSD? From everything I have read, they *supposedly* are pretty strict about using free licenses. Is there something I'm missing?
Again, just asking for my own curiosity.
86 • Ubuntu GNU/Linux LTS (by disi on 2011-10-26 08:12:40 GMT from Germany)
wouldn't be too bad.
In a Linux forum of a university, I was talking about installing GNU/Linux on an APU laptop and how good the open radeon driver works, webcam, bluetooth spot on but haven't decided on a desktop environment yet.
All I got for reply was, I should use Ubuntu 10.xx or better Ubuntu 11.xx or even a better OS like Ubuntu 12.xx
I said, that I had good experience with KDE application using the webcam. But would like to have some tiling window manager (in the meantime I found out that Kwin actual supports tiling and KDE has this great plasma-netbook desktop).
So people told me to use Kubuntu 10.xx or 11.xx or even better Kubuntu 12.xx -.-
People nowadays not only know that the Linux kernel is responsible to get the hardware going, but also set GNU/Linux = Ubuntu.
I think this is a sad development.
87 • GPL (by zany on 2011-10-26 10:48:50 GMT from Poland)
GPL give you freedom, not absolute freedom, because such thing doesn't exist. When you go to the shop, you don't complain that you lost your freedom, because you can't buy everything there for the amount of money you have, nor that you have to leave some money when you want to take something from there. It's the same with GPL, it's code for code, and not losing your freedom but paying for her. If you don't want to remain free, you don't have to use GPL.
88 • Re: #86 Ubuntu GNU/Linux LTS (by disi) (by Leo on 2011-10-26 12:14:17 GMT from United States)
Hi Disi, why do yo think this is sad? I take it as a fact, but I actually kind of like to see a distribution become so popular. By the way, in a corporate discussion the answer would have been GNU=LINUX=REDHAT
89 • Why GNU is of paramount importance to software and the world !!! (by Angelaj on 2011-10-26 14:11:03 GMT from Belgium)
Why GNU is of paramount importance to software, Linux, and the world !!!
I do not want to write an essay here, so I just will try to answer briefly to guys like '5 • GNU?!?!?!?!?!?? (by Adonis on 2011-10-24 11:09:16 GMT from Croatia)'
I wonder how people like you have the 'cheek' to deny what is pretty obvious for those who know, and are involved in FLOSS.
Nobody says that all about open source is about Richard Stallman and one needs to put GNU in front of everything; but what is true, without any doubt, is that without R. Stallman, GNU, Free Software Foundation, GPL licenses etc. , Linux would have never been developed the way it has been. Probably it would have never meant anything, except for some IT experts, students... And the world, the millions of people, computes, devices, thousands of companies using Linux, other FLOSS Operating Systems, or 'Free Libre Open Source Software', simply WOULD NOT EXIST!
So, the idea of 'Free Libre Open Source Software' is, certainly, NOT 'ancient' and NOT 'false', at all. Nowadays, with the mass production of tablets and smart phones the 'Libre free software' becomes more important than ever.
I they use FLOSS in a 'tricky' way like 'Android' using a very particular Java Virtual machine running over the Linux kernel, to avoid all the software and advantages of Linux, of Linux software, and of the 'Free Libre Open Source Software', they are cheating on all the people that created all that software, and cheating on all of us: the developers and the users too.
I believe that your comment is really out of place, selfish and harmful.
There will be always people that care about the environment, the pollution, the political rights... and any problem that eventually appears to the world and the humanity. Just in the same way that in the last centuries some people did care, and fight for the women's right to vote, or the abolition of slavery.
On the other hand, there will be always people like you that will take advantage of everything and everybody without any further ethical, technical, scientific... consideration.
You really sound like a 'free loader'; interested only in Linux because is free 'as beer', so you don't have to pay for it, disregarding the enormous amount of work made by thousands of people and programmers worldwide. Disregarding the existence of an overwhelming amount of software and 'Free Libre' Technology that is out there, free to be used for anyone, in the third world, or by any multinational company. Disregarding the astonishing amount of money that would represent, for all of them, to pay for it, if it would not be 'Free Libre Open Source Software', as it is. Disregarding the immense service that FLOSS has represented in the accelerating the evolution, transfer, and evolution of the world in general. and the IT world in particular; and accelerating the third industrial revolution worldwide.
Not to say the big money that have saved to big companies that have taken advantage of it!
So NO, WE DON'T 'forget it'! We remember R Stallman, GNU, Free Software Foundation, GPL licenses etc.as one of the key components in the history of open source. And not only that: a pillar of FLOSS and Linux so essential, that without him and and the FSF, you would not using Ubuntu, and would not be writing 'cheap' comments in Distrowatch, Because neither Linux Distros, |Ubuntu, or Distrowatch, would exist without the historic existence of R Stallman, GNU, Free Software Foundation, GPL licenses.
So is no 'history', is nowadays more important and relevant that ever; either for IT companies and people, and for the whole world.
You expressed it very well with your own words: 'if it wasn't for closed source and proprietary flash, adobe reader, codecs and some other stuff i would never use Linux anyway.'
Well... you are someone that, probably, have never contributed to FLOSS, or anything else.
Do not wonder anymore, please. You could easily go back to Windows, nobody will care, or miss you, anyway.
And, I remember you that in both: Linux and Windows, and other OSes, there are FLOSS alternatives to 'flash, adobe reader, codecs and some other stuff' that work very well, or even better, in most cases; and if not, they are catching up quickly, thanks to people that is not like you, and that understand what FLOSS is.
90 • GNU Linux = LiGNUnux (by hughetorrance on 2011-10-26 14:37:34 GMT from United Kingdom)
Thats right Jesse,the best things in life are free and always will be... here is my 2 cents worth... LiGNUnux LOL its still Linux but just with a different spelling.
91 • re #88 (by disi on 2011-10-26 14:59:55 GMT from Germany)
I like the popularity for an OS around the Linux kernel, mostly set together out of free software.
What if they go the Google way? Relying on a single source is never good. They first contributed the modules for their hardware upstream and they went into staging.
Then redid all the kernel security to work better with their mobile OS layout and forked their own kernel without contributing to Linux any more.
Ubuntu is so far from upstream they don't even have a chance to report any bugs, but only backport old software into their OS:
http://oswatershed.org << currently very slow :(
92 • @85 (by Not Sure on 2011-10-26 17:25:38 GMT from United States)
See the BSD Section at the Bottom
and for more good reading (Stallman vs de Raadt, et al):
Make up your own mind, OpenBSD is probably the most aware of a given software's license.
93 • Ubuntu 11.10 (by imnotrich on 2011-10-26 21:24:06 GMT from Mexico)
Interesting review of Ubuntu, but please tell me how you got the install to work?
Farthest I got was selecting a language, then blankscreen (and yes, tried all the optional modes including nomodeset).
Not a new or uncommon issue - goes back to the 10 series and still has not been fixed. Which makes Ubuntu a great choice for those who are telepathic. Not so good for the rest of us.
94 • @80 Landor (by BUMMER on 2011-10-26 22:58:59 GMT from United States)
It matters to the people who developed the software.
That is right!!! The software which GNU used came from Solaris, or from BSD. The ls, cp, mv, ..., etc. They copied them over and GNUed them!!! But now they want the credit? because the programs used the BSD license, and now they use the GPL license which prohibits code sharing.
An analogy for the GPL would be the farmer who receives the gift of a GPL cow from a neighbour. The cow is completely free, but all of the milk from the cow must be given away for free, and all of the cow's calves, and the calves' calves, yea, even unto the thousandth generation, shall be given away for free. Now what kind of use is such a cow? Even if the bulls are non-GPL bulls, all of their offspring by GPL cows are controlled by the GPL licence. If you have a cow breeding programme and you develop a really excellent breed of cow, you must give the new breed of cows away for free if just one of the many ancestors of the superior cow was a GPL cow. The GPL cow is even more dangerous than patented GM crop seeds. The world envisioned by the GPL seems to be a perfect communism where all developers are like subsistence farmers; they must give away everything excess to their own immediate requirements for free to the community.
argument by Jack H*,
The BSD developers got what they wanted. Their code is in use. The BSD license
intentionally trades away protection from inclusion in differently licensed
projects in return for the increased likelihood that the code can be used.
The GPL developers got what they wanted. Their code is protected from
proprietization (And ONLY their code. Anyone can take the original BSD licensed
code and do what they want with it).
There is no story here. The GPL and BSD licenses try to achieve different goals
and both work as advertised. If you want an analogy: BSD is like the girl who
sleeps with everybody. She gets a lot of sex and is invited to every party, but
nobody respects her. GPL is like the girl who is selective about her partners.
She doesn't have quite as much "fun" and has earned herself a little bit of a
hard-to-get reputation, but the people who know her treat her well. Proprietary
licenses usually require payment.
What do you say to that?
95 • RE: 94 (by Landor on 2011-10-27 00:11:57 GMT from Canada)
Obviously you want to argue about something, so pull anything you can to do so, which further adds credit to my belief that this topic does a disservice to the community and these kind of responses were the intention for it's publication.
Anyway, you're discussing apples and oranges. Projects get forked all the time, even rewritten verbatim pretty well. The BSD guys did so recently with GPL'd code which supposedly the author of this article was upset about it enough that he wrote about it here, but still supports BSD 100%. Odd that is, but such is life.
So, your post had absolutely nothing to do with the discussion, it would be untrue to state that every piece of code (especially GCC) was at one time created for, or by, the BSD or Solaris community. That leads any intelligent person to conclude that they did create their own application, thus deserve credit where credit is due. Code that they didn't create doesn't exclude them from this right.
That's what I say about that, and this:
Keep your stick on the ice...
96 • @95 (by BUMMER on 2011-10-27 02:19:52 GMT from United States)
Thank you for acknowledging that they did some things and they want all the credit. I am not arguing for the sake of arguing.
Yes they did some contributions, yes they have done a tremendous job with many projects and software, but to say that they are the REAL DEAL, it is not RIGHT.
I'd like to point out that real pioneers do not get mentioned, and I will mention them, because they are deserving of mention.
1) Donald E Knuth, notable computer scientist who gave one of the greatest creations of all time, TeX the mathematical typsetting system. He gave his program for free and let others contribute to it. There are commercial distributions of TeX and there are free versions. People mention RMS, but this person I believe is more of a champion in the open source/free software movement.
2) Dennis Ritchie. One of the creators of Unix and C/C++. Just like the saying of famous mathematicians, I am standing in the shoulder of giants. This person laid the foundations of Unix/C/C++. How often have folks neglected to mention him, despite his passing, his contributions will live on on our Linux/GNU/Linux/FreeBSD/*BSD systems.
I do hope that people understand that I believe in OpenSource and in Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). I try to help out whenever I can, but I do not believe in giving something which people have the right to decide what they want to call a system/distribution. A good friend of mine, tells things like it is and he has corrected me on many things that I have thought to be one way, but they are different. I try to use free drivers not the proprietary drivers whenever possible, but if I load the proprietary drivers, video quality is much better. What is one supposed to do?
97 • RE: 96 (by Landor on 2011-10-27 03:04:11 GMT from Canada)
My last response.
'Thank you for acknowledging that they did some things and they want all the credit'
'I am not arguing for the sake of arguing'
No, see your first quoted sentence.
'What is one supposed to do?'
What they choose to do. You're taking a whole lot out of context, and exactly what I've been saying here but you don't want to listen. Have you ever read that I tell anyone they cannot use Fedora because I've encountered nothing but trolls therein? I'd put everything I own on the fact that it's no. The same goes for free libre open source software, either in a statement from RMS, or anyone else. If you don't want to use it, they don't force you. They don't tell you that you can't use non-free. They tell you that in 'their opinion' you are doing a wrong, and in my opinion you are too. But that's just opinion, and opinions don't take away your rights. Nor do you have to 'listen to' fonts you read on a monitor 'if' someone does at some point indeed tell you that you have to use FLOSS only software.
What do I do? I use FLOSS. I take the hit for functionality, and honestly, I don't really see it. If I have a laptop that has a proprietary video chipset, I don't load the non-free firmware that is supposedly needed to use the 'free drivers' (think about that one, seriously) and I have decent graphics. I use gnash and it works very well for me. What else is there really? I don't listen to mp3s, there's ogg or flac. I buy my hardware with only free drivers in mind, period. That's what one should do if they really truly want it. If they don't, then it's their choice to do otherwise, but in all honesty, don't complain about closed source companies and their software, nor don't complain about others that do make such sacrifices that I do, and Richard Stallman does.
I don't think anyone has to follow anything blindly either. I have a facebook account, that definitely goes against Richard's beliefs, but that doesn't make me dislike him, or say that he's 'forcing me' to not use facebook if I choose. It just means that Richard and I see things a bit differently on all things, and I understand 'my right to choose those differences, or not'.
Keep your stick on the ice...
98 • RE: 95 (by Landor on 2011-10-27 03:27:52 GMT from Canada)
I have one last thing to say. Feel free to e-mail to discuss this further if you, or anyone else for that matter likes, though a warning, I'm slow to respond in e-mail, and that's an understatement.
How many articles do you read from GNU advocates about their rights being taken away, or that they should have the right to choose only free libre open source software without everyone writing articles complaining the opposite? I'm guessing it's close to zero.
Now ask yourself how many times you read the opposite in comparison. Again, I'm guessing it's quite a multiple factor.
Think about it seriously.
Now I'm off to write a review about a distribution that encourages, and distributes non-free software, regardless of me feelings about it.
Keep your stick on the ice...
99 • @96 (by Anonymous on 2011-10-27 06:17:52 GMT from France)
I believe you are confused about GNU. GNU is a philosophy and an operating system.
Dennie Richie, Donald E Knuth and RMS are people. I have high respect for them and I appreciate their contribution but they are not the same as GNU. They are people.
Nobody is arguing to call that RMS/Linux. It's not about giving credit to one man or another.
100 • @ Joe reg. Kororaa & Neptune MD5 sums (by LinuxFreak on 2011-10-27 08:40:00 GMT from Germany)
We can compare our MD5 sums and file sizes, if you like. I only downloaded the Kororaa i686 live versions (KDE + Gnome) and neptune-minimal-2. I am currently trying to download neptune-full-2, too, but the download link times out before the download fineshes. Once the link is timed out, I have to start from the beginning, the download cannot be resumed. It's a pity that there is no torrent offered. Did you succeed in downloading the full version?
My MD5 sum Kororaa i686 KDE:
My File size in bytes: 1.678.770.176
My MD5 sum Kororaa i686 GNOME: 6dcf3918a6aadb7c313e0a914cb8d897
My File size in bytes: 1.453.326.336
My MD5 sum neptune-full-2:
My File size in bytes: 692.193.280
Can you let me know whether my sums match your ISOs? Perhaps Ladislav could then add these sums directly to the text of the release announcement and delete the downlinks for the (wrong?) MD5 sums.
101 • re # 11 and 100 ZevenOS-Neptune md5sums (by gnomic on 2011-10-27 09:37:25 GMT from New Zealand)
Download of ZevenOS Neptune 2.0 Minimal CD iso completed without problems here and matched the md5sum shown on the site. Resulting CD booted on a couple of machines and ran sessions lasting several hours.
102 • @gnomic re # 101 (by LinuxFreak on 2011-10-27 09:59:59 GMT from Germany)
Thanks for your reply. I made a mistake in my posting, neptune-full-2 should read neptune-minimal-2. I'm still trying to download neptune-full-2, but I only get about 50KB/s, so the link shouldn't time out for another 4 hrs. Wish me luck...
103 • @gnomic re # 101 again (by LinuxFreak on 2011-10-27 10:32:42 GMT from Germany)
So now I know that my MD5 sum for neptune-minimal-2 is the same as yours, taken from the ZevenOS-Homepage. As far as the minimal iso is concerned, the sum published in the release announcement is correct then.
Let's see if the same holds true for the full iso, once my download completes. My Download speed has suddenly increased to ~ 190 KB/s - anybody from ZevenOS reading here, too? ;-)
104 • @94 (by zany on 2011-10-27 12:39:21 GMT from Poland)
Your cow analogy is false. To get it right, in GPL you don't have to give away cows nor milk for free, only genetic material. And it works both ways, so you can take genetic material from others, to make your GPL cows better, so you don't loose anything. Most people don't know how to raise a cow, so there's enough room for every farmer (only farmers with too big ego and greed will not fit here). It has nothing to do with communism, quite the contrary, if you have Wincow, even if you pay for her you cannot sell her, lend her, multiply her, cannot make her better, and if you do that, you will get punished. THIS is perfect definition of oppressive communistic dictatorship. But fortunately every dictator sooner or later will fade away.
105 • @85 (by klu9 on 2011-10-27 13:24:17 GMT from Mexico)
Personally I have nothing against OpenBSD.
Rather my joking version of the new slogan was attempting to poke fun at the tendency of ideologues to work themselves up into a greater rage at those who *share* 99% of their ideology than those who are totally different.
Kind of like the mutual anger & hatred among the People's Front of Judea, the Judean People's Front, the Judean Popular People's Front, and the Popular Front of Judea. :D
106 • @85, oops (by klu9 on 2011-10-27 13:25:24 GMT from Mexico)
oops, I meant NetBSD, not OpenBSD.
Same difference :D
107 • The missing "GNU/" (by Matti L on 2011-10-27 15:10:14 GMT from Finland)
I, too, agree with Jesse. I don't like choosing and why should I? Gnome or KDE? I'll use both. Open or closed source? I'll use both. Windows or Linux? Both again. Right now I only play with Xbox 360, but if I had money I'd buy a PS3, too.
108 • Various things (by Jesse on 2011-10-27 18:14:08 GMT from Canada)
>> "I think that users should be free first, to use what works best for them. When GPL'd code is available that does as well or better than non-GPL'd code, then I don't have a problem with using it. I think that is also what Jesse was trying to get across in the article (correct me if I'm wrong, Jesse)."
That's more or less what I was getting at. Basically I was suggesting that personal freedom, the freedom to choose the tools we use, the freedom to select what we see as the best tool for the job, is more important than licensing. Put another way, I think freedom springs from choice and I believe personal freedom is more important than software freedom (libre software). I think free software is a good thing, I think GNU and the FSF are good things. At the same time I do not see non-free software as a bad thing. I don't think free and non-free software need to be (or even should be) exclusive to each other. Personally, I try to write, use and promote open source software as much as possible. which brings me to...
>> "It makes me laugh when people say that GPL restricts freedom. GPL does not restrict freedom, it ensures that the code will remain free and anything that is added to it will also be free."
The GPL tells you what you may or may not do with code. It enforces software freedom by restricting personal freedom. When people talk about the GPL being restrictive they are talking about the restrictions placed on the developers/distributors of the software. The GPL makes software more free by making developers less free. As a developer, I tend to prefer things the other way around. I like licenses which put a higher priority on developer freedom and leave the choice of whether the software should remain free in the developer's hands.
109 • re:108 (by jack on 2011-10-27 19:24:43 GMT from Canada)
"The GPL makes software more free by making developers less free. "
The developer has a choice of which "restriction" to put on his code, doesn't he?
110 • Developers (by Jesse on 2011-10-27 22:42:53 GMT from Canada)
>> "The developer has a choice of which "restriction" to put on his code, doesn't he?"
The _original_ developer gets the choice. Other developers or distributors who want to use, ship or merge the code then have to live with it. This is fine if the original code has a fairly liberal license, but more restrictive licenses can cause problems. Take a look at cases like ZFS and Linux. Both use open source licenses, but we can't have ZFS natively in the Linux kernel because of the license conflicts. The FreeBSD project doesn't have that problem. Or look at the secure boot issue we covered the other week. GRUB2 can't use signing keys because the GPLv3 doesn't allow it. If the GRUB team had stuck with GPLv2, which is less restrictive, we wouldn't have that problem.
Don't get me wrong, more restrictive licenses have their places. They try to insure the code stays open and I think that's a good thing. It's a lot harder to selfishly use GPLed code and that's great. But there is a trade-off. The more restrictive the license, the harder it is to work with code using other open source licenses and more demands are put on developers, not just the original author, but all the developers who follow.
111 • re: 110 (by jack on 2011-10-28 02:55:46 GMT from Canada)
...but more restrictive licenses can cause problems.
for some unknown developer x months or years later?
Surely only the original developer has the right to determine which "restriction" he prefers.
And he is free to select
112 • @108, 110 (by Anonymous on 2011-10-28 06:14:11 GMT from France)
The freedom to impose restrictions is not freedom at all. Only the _original_ developer has that choice at all. The _original_ developer is the ruler. It is his code. He is the dictator. He can go the route of freedom or the route of non-freedom. He can delegate that choice to other developers, the other developers are the dictators then. They can choose to give freedom or not. The freedom to remove freedom is not valuable. We don't call that freedom. The FSF defines software freedom as follow:
* The freedom to run the program, for any purpose.
* The freedom to study how the program works, and change it so it does your computing as you wish.
* The freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor.
* The freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions to others.
And indeed, those freedoms are valuable. The freedom to remove those freedoms is not. I beliee even the BSD/Opensource guys agry with that. Software with BSD license is free software but ZFS is no more free when it is in OS/X. FreeBSD is free software, it gives both the user and the developers the freedoms mentioned above. It doesn't give you more freedom than GNU/Linux when it allows you to remove freedom.
Non free software is not a bad thing in itself and I won't argue with you that it is but it's not free. People should not confuse freedom with non freedom. Non free software has some technical advantages sometimes and there are some very good piece of non free software. I use non free software to do a lot of things but I don't consider myself free when I use them. When I use non free software, I accept to be locked down and I am willingly trading my privacy in exchange for a service.
113 • Licenses (by Jesse on 2011-10-28 12:45:50 GMT from Canada)
>> ">>...but more restrictive licenses can cause problems.
for who? for some unknown developer x months or years later?"
Since it's a copyright license, it affects anyone who wants to redistribute or use the code (or any part of it) in the future. I gave two concrete examples in my previous post. It also affects the users as the license will determine who will work on the code and how they can contribute. For another example, look at the licensing conflict which prevents OpenOffice from using LibreOffice code.
>> "Surely only the original developer has the right to determine which restriction he prefers."
Of course the original developer has that right. He or she also has that responsibility. If you release code into the world and want other people to make use of it the choice of license should not be made lightly. There are serious pros and cons to consider.
114 • re:112 (by jack on 2011-10-28 13:15:41 GMT from Canada)
We appear to agree that the author of the work has an inalienable right to control/give up control of his work. Almost all book authors retain the right to control their work
I know nothing about the various kinds of restrictions that exist in the software world but get the impression that there are progressive degrees.
I believe all authors (and all users) would be well served if these were delineated clearly and completely
115 • @78 ARM netbooks and linux (by Jb on 2011-10-28 15:41:53 GMT from United States)
re:78, arm netbooks ... there is an alpha of Bodhi linux for an arm-based TABLET device. Bodhi is a great Ubuntu-based system, so check it out if you are interested in a full featured linux operating system for ARM.
116 • Facts about GNU, Linux, etc. (by Magic Banana on 2011-10-29 03:08:00 GMT from Brazil)
* To those who pretend that GNU is only 8% of the operating system, they should check the details of the study they cite ( http://digitizor.com/2011/06/02/gnu-in-gnulinux/ ): 1) GNOME is set apart from the GNU group even though it is in the GNU project (therefore the total GNU part is about 50% larger than the Linux one); 2) these figures are proportion of a repository (full of niche applications): taking the default install of any popular distribution (Ubuntu, Mint, Fedora, Debian, ... they all use GNOME by default) would considerably reduce the sections "KDE", "Java" and, above all, "other".
Again, if you find GNU/Linux awkward, call it GNU. Calling it Linux does not make sense.
And again, if Linux would support GNU's philosophy that would not be that problematic but that is far from being the case: the Linux kernel even includes proprietary code! RMS abandoned his job to create an entire operating system respecting user freedom. He has almost entirely succeeded but the kernel (a smaller part) was missing. Is it "childish" (as a reader wrote) to fight against the use of words (Linux instead of GNU/Linux, open source instead of Free software) that unfairly ruins your life-long project? The people ranting against RMS and the FSF are not much informed (seriously: "The ls, cp, mv, ..., etc. [GNU] copied them over", "the GPL license prohibits code sharing", etc.)... and part of the problem is in the use of that they think they use Linux and open source software when their system is mainly GNU. In other terms, these numerous misinformed comments are an invitation to restore the truth and give a deserved credit to GNU (more deserved than the credit Linux receives) and its philosophy.
A lot could also be written about the misunderstanding about who deserves freedom. In my opinion (and that of the FSF), the answer is "the one who achieves her work through the application", i.e., the user and not the other developers. Isn't it absurd that some BSD guys defend here the right for a company to take their code and make it proprietary but cannot bear someone using it in a GPL application! Really, can someone explain me the logics at work?!
117 • I forgot something (by Magic Banana on 2011-10-29 03:10:48 GMT from Brazil)
I forgot to reply to those who pretend that "GNU would be nothing without Linux". Again, be informed: GNU was working on a UNIX kernel before Linux was even born!
118 • OK... (by FitzLT on 2011-10-29 05:00:01 GMT from United States)
Sorry for not catching the sarcasm. I'm usually really good about that. I agree, though, about all the constant bickering in the F/OSS world. There is ALWAYS some kind of controversy, issue, etc. I remember when people used to fuss about Mozilla using the MPL because they were being dictators about the use of their copyrighted name and image(heaven forbid!). Never mind the fact that you could just take the code and do what Debian did(and THEY got blasted by the communities for doing THAT!). It seems like no matter what you do in the F/OSS world--you can't win.
"Isn't it absurd that some BSD guys defend here the right for a company to take their code and make it proprietary but cannot bear someone using it in a GPL application! Really, can someone explain me the logics at work?!"
From MY understanding, the reason why a lot of BSD-oriented people are upset about their work being GPL'ed is because both camps are all about F/OSS. A lot of them feel like the GPLers are being hypocrites when they take BSD-licensed(and/or derived) code, and GPL it so that any changes can't even go back into the communities that created the code to begin with WHILE claiming they are "making sure the code stays free".
The problem you have now is that the code is no longer free for the BSDers to use into their projects even though it's *supposed* to be "free/open source" code. At least, that is what I have gathered over the years of forum reading.
119 • BTW... (by FitzLT on 2011-10-29 05:14:52 GMT from United States)
I do have to add that I think it is ABSOLUTELY hilarious that Linus Torvalds was upset with Google for not combining Android with Linux in same form after publicly refuting RMS(for years) for claiming that Linux(the system--not the kernel) should be called GNU/Linux.
That is a blatant example of hypocrisy at its best!
P.S. Here is a a small article just to give those who haven't read anything about it a quick review:
120 • What's in a name (by Jesse on 2011-10-29 12:54:10 GMT from Canada)
>> "Again, if you find GNU/Linux awkward, call it GNU. Calling it Linux does not make sense."
That would almost work, except that GNU is already the name of something. Calling a GNU/Linux distribution "GNU" would be like calling the Firefox web browser "Mozilla", or calling OpenOffice "Apache". Now if the GNU userland tools had their own distinct name, like "Whiffle" for example, I could see calling a GNU/Linux project a Whiffle distribution.
>> "From MY understanding, the reason why a lot of BSD-oriented people are upset about their work being GPL'ed is because both camps are all about F/OSS. A lot of them feel like the GPLers are being hypocrites when they take BSD-licensed(and/or derived) code, and GPL it so that any changes can't even go back into the communities that created the code to begin with WHILE claiming they are making sure the code stays free.
This is entirely true. It's quite the slap in the face to have someone take your open source code, relicense it to "make it more free" and, at the same time, deny you the right to benefit from it. That's a problem with open source licenses, adding restrictions is easy, removing them is harder.
121 • Copyleft (by Magic Banana on 2011-10-29 16:32:04 GMT from Brazil)
Still looks absurd to me: would BSD people be more happy if, for instance, the Linux kernel would be proprietary instead of being licensed under the GPL? It really looks so. They never complain about Apple's behavior w.r.t. their code! On one hand, these BSD guys (I guess not all of them but those who have expressed themselves here) base their choice of a license on the blessed possibility to make proprietary applications from their work and, on the other hand, they keep on ranting against GPL applications that are not free enough. How can a user prefer a proprietary license to a GPL license? That does not make any sense to me.
@120: I call the system GNU/Linux. I was just pointing out, to the many people mocking the awkwardness of this denomination, that the simplification should be GNU (the original and, still today, major workload that led to the OS they use) and not Linux (what they all say despite the reality that they simply ignore).
122 • GNU/Linux (by Magic Banana on 2011-10-29 16:43:23 GMT from Brazil)
By the way, Jesse, your argument can be reversed and works even better: "That would almost work, except that *Linux* is already the name of something". It is the name of one single part of the operating system you use: the kernel. In that respect, simplifying GNU/Linux into GNU (that must represent about 100 other components, more lines of code, etc.) makes much more sense. But again, I call the OS GNU/Linux and there is no ambiguity.
123 • Naming (by Jesse on 2011-10-29 17:54:37 GMT from Canada)
>> "By the way, Jesse, your argument can be reversed and works even better: "
No, it doesn't. My point was that GNU is the name of an organization. Much like Mozilla or Apache is an organization. It's not a technical term. Linux is the name of a component of the OS. When people say "I run Linux" then mean an OS running with a Linux kernel. If you said "I run GNU" it sounds like you're the leader of the organization. There is no "GNU" program on the operating system.
>> "they keep on ranting against GPL applications that are not free enough. How can a user prefer a proprietary license to a GPL license? That does not make any sense to me."
It's not that BSD people prefer closed source licenses, most of them don't. I think what they dislike (at least what I don't like) is the hypocrisy. If someone comes along and takes my BSD or public domain code and puts it in a closed applications I don't like it, but at least they're being honest about it. Were someone to take my BSD or public domain code and apply the GPL to it to make it "more free" it is still as closed off to me as the closed source code. The people applying the GPL are saying they are insuring the code stays free for everyone while, at the same time, denying use of their changes to the very people who originally created it. The GPL reduces the number of people who may use the code and it's done under the banner of freedom. It's that paradox that bothers BSDers.
Put another way, yes the GPL is more free than a closed source license, but it is still restrictive. Just because there are much worse options out there doesn't make those restrictions irrelevant.
124 • @123 (by OH DUM BA on 2011-10-29 19:03:33 GMT from United States)
Well Said Jesse!
This is what I wanted to point out in my rantings. You could not have said it any better.
I am a (Linux/GNU/Linux) user, but I also use FreeBSD. I like that FreeBSD does not bother me about licenses and that I can easily install some application without worrying that I am "tainting my kernel". I like Linux/Gnu/Linux too! I have been using Linux/Gnu?linux since 2001/2002, with Mandrake 9.0, Red Hat 8.0, and Red Hat 9.0 Shrike. I needed to install certain programs that were "not free enough" and had "tainted my kernel" :( Even though I did not like to "taint my kernel", I had too I could not get online without these closed-source bundles :( Later on, kernel developers have become more restrictive and not allow some stuff that had previously been working before and closed it, i.e, GPL symbols in usb drivers after kernel 2.6.25. Some folks like Linuxant charge for drivers (full speed) for their modems/usb modems. Some folks have free drivers, but they are not open source and thus taint the kernel. I wish I could express this better, but it is hard. If I had known that by getting an external modem(that would use the native serial driver), I would not have needed to taint my kernel, I would have done that a while ago :(
125 • @Magic Banana (by OH DUM BA on 2011-10-29 19:13:36 GMT from United States)
The tail is trying to wag the dog :)
when the GNU people got upset when people call it Linux only and not GNU/Linux.
Now when Google did Android and not add Android + Linux or Linux + Android, Linus got upset. Something came back to bite him!
When things are done like this, people need to give credit to everyone that contributes whether it seems appropriate or not. Just that some people want more credit than others and this is sadly a difficult thing. You can't please all the people all the time :(
126 • RMS/FSF rule the world! (by Freedom evangelist on 2011-10-29 23:07:07 GMT from Brazil)
The FSF wants people to use free software exclusively and to remove all other options. For the FSF, it's a matter of ethics. As Richard Stallman put it, "Writing non-free software is not an ethically legitimate activity, so if people who do this run into trouble, that's good!"
Jesse Smith frequently saying "he couldn't try out some distro because of an Intel NIC that needs proprietary firmware" is a proof that Richard Stallman is right.
In contrast, I have ALMOST NO PROBLEM with my carefully chosen Linux-friendly hardware, including an Atheros-based WiFi card. My next PC (to be based on the upcoming Ivy Bridge class of CPUs) will follow the same philosophy. BTW, the "intel" driver is OPEN-SOURCE, just as the FSF wants it to be...
And the Tizen project (www.tizen.org) is another good news for us. In the end, everything will be GPL/FOSS!
127 • The BSD/GPL problem (by Anonymous on 2011-10-30 00:43:14 GMT from France)
I kind of get what is the gripe against the GPL by the BSD people. There is one easy solution to fix that. Just fork BSD and apply the GPL licence to it. That way you can still use the code "stolen" from the GPL. The GPL does not impose more restriction than the BSD/other open source licenses. It only impose more restriction if you want to write proprietary software. If you just want to write open source software then you can use the GPL and be compatible with all the GPL code. It's less restrictive than the BSD actually because GPL software can include BSD and GPL software. The BSD licensed code can include proprietary and BSD licenced code. Proprietary software can include BSD and proprietary code. When you look at it the way it is, the GPL is not more restrictive than the BSD or proprietary license from a developer's point of view. Now those who attack GNU or the GPL because it is not the same as BSD miss the point. The GPL is a tool, it is not a religion. The BSD license is not a religion either. There are developers who use the BSD and are happy to see their code GPL'd. That may be surprising but some people don't take it as an attack. They can still use the GPL'd code, they just have to use the GPL license and that is not a problem since it is very easy to use.
128 • IndigGPLnado for the BSDanksters (by Angelaj on 2011-10-30 10:11:23 GMT from Belgium)
Well, I didn't want to enter in this one, really. But, some people make it necessary. I just will try to answer briefly to guys like '23 • Naming (by Jesse on 2011-10-29 17:54:37 GMT from Canada)'.
Please BSD license guys, I appreciate your work, and your software, I do appreciate your honesty and good intentions (heart-full software), but I don not appreciate your 'rationality' when judging licenses and 'real life'.
Please try to state rational, logical sentences (in a scientific way). I mean, if needed take a look at some philosophy, epistemology, or philosophy of science book; to avoid making 'SOPHISMS' when trying to undermine GPL licenses.
Stop 'crying baby' to every line of code that is 'public domain' or 'BSD' licensed, and then reused and transformed and changed into GPL license.
First: It's absolute legal (according to BSD licenses), so no hypocrisy at all on it.
Hypocrisy is to use it (like Apple and many others do), close it into a proprietary license and 'pretend' that they are 'good guys' and help 'whatever community', while charging millions for software that they possess legally, but they have NOT made, that they DO NOT share, and that will not help their authors or anyone else. Nobody will benefit from the source code again; and in the best of cases they will try to wash their faces giving away some 'pennies' to any community, or some of you.
Second: How on earth can you complain, or can be more restrictive using and modifying a BSD code into a GPL, that is still available to be used and modified again by anyone, than simply making it proprietary by a company, and therefore not open source anymore? Are you nuts?
The only restriction is for those who want to benefit from the work made by others for free: greedy companies, mafiosi etc
Take a look at the book 'Candide' by Voltaire; I know many of you actually prefer 'The Bible', which is also 'good literature', but less interesting from a logical, rational, and scientific point of view...
The only way GPL is a 'restrictive' license is towards greedy multinationals, and 'wise' 'godfather style' businessmen [Yeah, I know, I know... it was your software. I know, we promised we were going to help you somehow... but you know: the crisis, times are hard... Well, the situation now is that we got millions of code and banknotes, and you got nothing... but look at it in the good way: we haven't broken your legs... Is a good thing what you have there with your BSD licenses; you see? Good for everyone...]
Let's put it in a graphic simple way, with an example:
1 - Piece of BSD licensed code = 'Peach Inc.' take the source code, modify it or not, and use it in their new Operating System = They sell it for millions and, of course, anyone but them, can use the source code now. Or else...
2 - Piece of BSD licenced code = 'Cherry Inc.' take a look at the code to use it in their new Operating System. They modify it, change the new code into GPL licensed code, and use it legally. = They sell it for millions, and, of course, anyone (not only them) can reuse the source code now, according to the GPL license..
2 - Piece of GPL licensed code = 'Peach Inc.' take a look at the source code to use it in his new Operating System. = Maybe they modify it and use it illegally trying to pass unnoticed.= Maybe they really want to use it legally, but they are not interested at all, in giving back the code. Their vision is: all the code and all the money for us. Their 'greedy approach' does not allow them to understand that they can always use the code, and that while, still being in advantage, they can benefit of the modifications of the code by others. = Fortunately for them they find another similar piece of source code, under BSD license, that they can use for free while giving nothing in return. 'Peach Inc.' take the source code, modify it or not, and use it in their new Operating System = They sell it for millions and, of course, anyone but them, can use the source code now. Or else...
That is an example on 'how things work' in real life, and how BSD is helping the multinationals to make more money for free [money for nothing, and chicks for free...].
Of course, things are much more complicated, and the possibilities much more varied, than in this small example; but basically and in most of the cases, the stuff is just like that.
Please BSD guys, you produce nice code, but you use a 'totally' free (like in 'totally') licenses for the present, and 'amputated freedom' for the future; a 'Candide source' for 'wise boys', mafiosi, greedy corporations, banksters, etc,
You sound like nice guys saying 'Long Live Freedom', 'Viva the Free Open Source Code', 'Occupy Wall Street, Yeahh...'
But, the raw truth, the reality underneath your licenses and 'philosophy', is that instead of 'Long Live Freedom', you advocate for 'Short Live Freedom', You are 'Indignados', you want to change the things for better, and you help to 'Occupy Wall Street, but from the inside...'That is to say you help to 'Occupy Wall Street' to those that have been 'Occupying Wall Street since always', and stealing money from the rest of the world. In other words you help the rotten system despite your 'good' intentions; whether it is the IT system or the Global system.
Please, stop 'crying baby' when people use GPL to try to maintain a solid and long line of freedom for the future, both in IT and the world.
129 • @123 (by Anonymous on 2011-10-30 11:37:20 GMT from France)
The context is usually useful to avoid the confusion.
- Which operating system do you run?
- I run Red Hat <= This is the operating system (context)
- Which company do you run?
- I run Red Hat <= This is the company (context)
130 • Question... (by FitzLT on 2011-10-30 21:09:56 GMT from United States)
I don't know if it was intended or not, but your post came off as really arrogant and condescending.
1. I actually posted an explanation (#118) as to why many of the BSDers are upset...to which Jesse even concurred. Logically, I understand their argument. There IS some sense there if you stop to think about it. Now whether or not you agree is an entirely different issue altogether.
2. As far as 'SOPHISMs' are concerned, MY experience has been such that the BSDers tend to be more grounded and "down-to-earth", if you will, in their viewpoints and rationalizations. I would feel pretty offended at that remark considering the prevalent definition of "sophism" is an argument used to deceive someone.
3. I can't believe you randomly brought The Bible into this discussion--and in that context. It was uncalled for...period.
Please try to be respectful to other people. You CAN disagree without being insulting or condescending. Thank you.
Number of Comments: 130
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