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Re: Status GCE images and trademark (was Please let's not talk about "clouds")


 Hi Brian,

A couple of responses to the steps you said might help for "Official" Debian images:

1) It's too late to get any new custom kernel package into either squeeze or wheezy. The Google-provided kernels have their source released as one would hope, but are not built from a Debian package (nor are they used only with Debian). This issue should go away once arbitrary kernel support is available in Google Compute Engine, but it won't be solved in the next month or two, by which point we hope to have properly publicized these images and have users using them.

2) As I understand it, people in Debian are already packaging build-debian-cloud (f/k/a ec2debian-build-ami) for jessie. This is great. While gcutil and gsutil are free software, the pace of development is such that more thought is probably warranted on what the ideal situation is for their packaging and where such packaging would live. If David and/or I make it to DebConf13, this could be one of many fruitful topics of discussion. As with point 1, we're hoping to publicize these quite soon, so any packaging would necessarily happen some time after we properly announce these and gain users, not before.

My hope is that neither of these is a blocker for official Debian status. Either way, I would encourage the policy for official Debian images to be documented somewhere other than email archives, and for the parts of the policymaking which don't involve attorney-client privileged communications to occur on relevant public Debian lists like this one. :)

As for who publishes: My work on this is part of my day job, but that doesn't mean it isn't in keeping with my role as a Debian developer as well. Plenty of other non-DD Googlers are helping generally with this effort as part of their day jobs, but so far I'm the only one who has made images for the debian-cloud project. If Debian prefers only DDs to make these images, it shouldn't be a problem, especially if DD volunteers are interested so that I'm not a bottleneck. I will definitely send out a call for volunteers email, since nobody has yet reacted to that bit of my debian-cloud announcement email. (Any DDs reading this: feel free to volunteer!)

- Jimmy

On Mon, Apr 22, 2013 at 6:23 PM, Brian Gupta <brian.gupta@brandorr.com> wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 22, 2013 at 7:51 PM, Jimmy Kaplowitz <jkaplowitz@google.com> wrote:
>> On Mon, Apr 22, 2013 at 12:49 PM, Stefano Zacchiroli <zack@debian.org> wrote:
>>> On Mon, Apr 22, 2013 at 09:56:31AM -0700, Clint Byrum wrote:
>>> > The trademark policy is not clear on describing things which contain
>>> > Debian itself. If HPCS adds a special super whiz-bang open source but
>>> > HP cloud only thing to the images, its not clear that they can or
>>> > cannot call that Debian still. It would be good for the project to
>>> > make the policy on images clear at http://www.debian.org/trademark .
>>> I agree with that. In fact: the "public cloud market place" scenario was
>>> one of the motivating factor for revamping the trademark policy, even if
>>> in the end we didn't end up detailing that specific use case (we
>>> probably should). This is mainly because until very recently we didn't
>>> have much concrete evidence of "official" Debian images to benchmark
>>> against.
>>> Note, however, that the trademark policy does offer a sane default: in
>>> case of doubt, you should ask permission before calling your image
>>> "Debian".
>> I'm glad I'm reading this thread - it's definitely something I'll want
>> to follow up on for Google's images as well, since they do add three
>> debs specific to the Google Compute Engine environment, as well as
>> Google's gsutil and gcutil tools via tarballs extracted sensibly under
>> /usr/local. All of them are free software under the Apache License
>> 2.0. The images we've put into the debian-cloud project so far have
>> been uploaded by a Debian developer - namely me - and we arranged
>> things explicitly so that non-Googler DDs can be granted the access to
>> upload official images.
> Jimmy,
> James Bromberger, a DD was is an employee of Amazon, is currently
> solely responsible for maintaining the "official" EC2 images. He does
> this with his "Debian hat" on.
> I believe, if you were willing to maintain the GCE images yourself,
> with or without other DDs helping you, you should be able to work out
> an arrangement that you are the (or one of the) maintainer(s) of
> "Official Debian images" for GCE. From reading back through email
> archives, it's clear that there is an expectation that DDs need to
> build and maintain "Official" images.
> If you wanted to follow this route there are still a couple of bugs
> that probably should be filed and addressed:
> 1) Custom kernel required -- I don't know if this is a show stopper
> bug, or perhaps it could be addressed in the mean time by a custom GCE
> kernel package that is included in Debian, and built and mantained by
> DDs.
> 2) Packages being created for the tools required to handle instance
> instantiation.
> I you went this route, I don't believe any special trademark request
> would need to be submitted, but I would follow up with leader@ to
> confirm the process and requirements. (This is all pretty new, so if
> anyone on this list has any thoughts, they should feel free to share.)
> However, if you wanted to publish images with your Google hat on, and
> have other Googlers who aren't DDs helping you, and call these images
> "Debian", then you'd likely want to have someone write to trademark@
> and submit a use request. (Since this falls into the "when in doubt"
> clause of the TM policy.) These would not be "Official images" but
> it's probable that your team would be granted usage rights to the
> Debian TM.
> My suggestion, since everything seems to be in place to allow
> non-Googlers to upload images, would be a new thread calling for DD
> volunteers to help you build and maintain images, as I think all would
> benefit if there were only "official debian images" for GCE. (You
> could also try jobs@d.o, if you wanted to widen your net for potential
> volunteers.)
> Cheers,
> Brian
>> is a clarification to the trademark policy planned, or should I have
>> someone email trademarks@ on behalf of Google to confirm permission
>> before any broader announcement? We're hoping to make a couple of
>> announcements mentioning these images in the next several weeks (I'll
>> say more about that in a different thread).
>> - Jimmy
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