Re: Time to make a stand. (Was: Re: IBM 390)
Let me make it clear at the outset that you will not be getting
any confidential information from me. I do not believe that two wrongs
make a right, and anyway, in this case, I dont see any problem in IBM's
behaviour. Richard Stallman might argue that IBM is morally wrong to not
open the source code, but this is a moral issue - not a legal one.
That being said, there is information that is more readily
accessible to me which is non-confidential. This, I am more than willing
to share, but let us take that discussion off this list.
I dont believe that IBM is anti-linux. IBM is a big corporation
that is so big that quite often its left hand doesnt know / understand
what its right hand does. If you do see isolated incidents that go against
the Linux community, you must remember that that is just what they are :
isolated incidents. Like all other big corporations, IBM is still trying
to grasp the business model of free software. Sometimes it succeeds, and
sometimes it fails. I think that ascribing intentions to these successes
and failures is a meaningless excercise.
For example, there are IBM'ers who are actively arguing for
opening up IBM intellectual property where they see it as doing more harm
than good. An example was the token-ring card specifications. There were
no drivers for the PCI token-ring cards from IBM. This is because IBM
considered the token-ring interface as proprietary and would not
release the programming specs. There were a lot of IBM'ers who went to
great lengths to get the specs released to a driver writer.
I also know of atleast one IBM'er who is an active debian package
I believe that free software equates to better software (that is
why I am on this list!). The business world may recognize this too, but
until they have a strategy in place for making money off of free software,
they wont play the free software game. IBM is still trying to find the
right strategies, and I dont think they can be faulted for that.
On Thu, 25 Mar 1999, Phillip R. Jaenke wrote:
> On Wed, 24 Mar 1999, Jor-el wrote:
> > Jay,
> > I work at IBM too, and I had heard about this on the internal
> > fora. Since I was bound by my confidentiality agreement about statement
> > made on those fora, I didnt mention it. But now that the cat is out of the
> > bag...
> > The thing to remember about this (and there were very few details
> > mentioned) is that IBM management did its best to squash the port into
> > non-existence : Linux on S/390 hardware would be a direct competitor to
> > Open-Edition MVS - which is the IBM version of UNIX on OS/390. So I
> > wouldnt hold my breath waiting for a URL, or for IBM to release the code.
> > I doubt if they would even sell it.
> Hrm. I'm definitely getting the feeling IBM isn't really supportive of
> Linux on RS/6000's. Especially since they're only porting to the F40's and
> F50's, and a few 43P's.
> All machines that can boot Linux, and have been able to for *months*.
> So, now that we can safely assume IBM is really anti-Linux when it cuts
> into their profits (in the case of Netfinitys and desktops, it doesn't.
> They pay for Windows, and resell it. They develop and sell AIX and several
> other OSes for their hardware.), it's time to ask the IBMers out here in
> debian-devel for some big help. And not just the IBMers. Everyone.
> Jor-el; You've got the model number. Feed us specs. Feed me architecture
> and hardware documentation; the more in depth and detailed, the better.
> Share it with the world through me. (I promise to only list my sources for
> information as 'anonymous,' not even 'anonymous IBM employee.')
> IBM wants to play like that, *fine*. They should have known better than to
> play like that against me. Hell, I get *paid* now to put Linux on
> RS/6000's and other obscure and strange hardware. (If you don't consider a
> Unisys Aquanta DS6 obscure and/or strange, you obviously haven't seen one.
> Developers of the world unite! Let this be our battlecry, from this day
> Let NO obscurity, no license, no closed-mouthed vendors hinder our
> progress any further! Let no architecture remain unexplored, let no piece
> of hardware remain unsupported! Let NOONE and NOTHING stand in the way of
> not only knowledge, but also technology and the future!
> WE are the developers of today. WE are the developers of tomorrow. Without
> developers, computers would be non-existant. So let NOTHING stand in the
> way of our search for knowledge, our quest for the future, and our
> dedication to our projects!
> ...okay, so it was corny. But it's what I feel needs to be said. As usual,
> I'm just going to come right out and say it folks. And this time without
> being all corny and flowery and such.
> I'm putting Linux on the RS/6000. So are others. More and more people are
> every day. And IBM's trying to stop those of us who want to see it on
> *every* RS/6000, not just a few that will soon be phased out of
> You, or someone you know, may soon be putting Linux on a K6/2. Or a 21164.
> Or a PowerPC 604e. Or a StrongARM 200. Or any other processor out there.
> Every day, more people are installing Linux.
> It's our job, as developers and supporters of not just Linux, but free
> software; software without silly licensing politics, to give these people
> an ALTERNATIVE to what's out there!
> No one man is an island; but one man *can* make a difference.
> Many people, working together, can change the world if they set their
> minds to it. That's the way things work.
> It's time for all of us, as a community, to make things work the way *we*
> want them to. It's time to put an end to single-operating system
> architectures. It's time to put an end to single-operating system
> software. It's time to put an end to overpricing, to idiotic leasing, to
> horrid licensing. It's time to tear down the walls.
> It's time to show that there are *NO* limits to what we can do when we
> choose to.
> I don't know about you, but I've already made my choice.
> Not IBM, not Motorola, not ANYONE shall stand in my way. I've set out to
> accomplish something. And I'm going to do it. WITH or *WITHOUT* the
> support of IBM. WITH or *WITHOUT* the support of Motorola. (FYI, though,
> Motorola is *GENUINELY* supportive of Linux. I've heard that it *will* be
> running on the CPX-8xxx systems (CompatPCI chassis) soon, with luck.)
> You want Linux on the S/390. Fine. I can understand and appreciate that.
> IBM doesn't want to. So...
> SCREW IBM. Whether or not they like it, we can make it happen. With some
> work, with some help, without IBM.. we can do it.
> I've had it with the half-supporters; the liars; the masquerades. "We
> support Linux 110%!" Yet they refuse to assist in porting it to other
> hardware. That's not supporting Linux as I see it. And I'm pretty sure
> many of you see it the same way.
> So let's show 'em what we can do, folks. Look out IBM, because here we
> And of course, as always, comments and such are welcome. Note the -PESTER
> ME!- line in my sig; I can be reached at that number from 9a to
> Whenever(TM) Eastern time. And if you email my work address, *PLEASE* do
> *NOT* CC: to debian-devel. Unfortunately, I *have* to use Exchange at
> work. (Well, till I 'fix' Exchange. POP3 is a beautiful thing.) So emails
> come out all.. icky. ;P
> Oh, and before everyone starts screaming at my employer... the views
> expressed here are *MINE*. Not my employers. (Although, I'm pretty much
> executive staff, sooooo... ;) So don't bother them. Bother me.
> | Phillip R. Jaenke | "Not all wisdom comes from without; |
> | Head of Unix Systems | much wisdom can only come from |
> | Unicent Telecom | within. Only you can teach yourself |
> | firstname.lastname@example.org (RISCy@IRC) | some of the most important lessons |
> +-------------------------+ of life." --Takes-Many-Roads, |
> Project Head | Silent Strider Theurge |
> The Linux RS/6000 Project +--------------------------------------+
> -PESTER ME!- PJaenke@unicent.com / 800.319.9250 x4268 -PESTER ME!-