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Re: Discussion - non-free software removal

On Thu, Nov 14, 2002 at 01:10:27AM +1000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> On Wed, Nov 13, 2002 at 08:47:57AM -0600, John Goerzen wrote:
> > If the non-free support is so weak that nobody cares enough to put a little
> > bit of work into it, that says something about how little we care about
> > non-free here, doesn't it?

> It's less effort to maintain non-free as part of Debian, than separate
> from it. Duplicating the archive, authentication, and maintenance of the
> mirror network are all things that take time and that are demonstrably
> unnecessary for any technical reason.

> If people *are* going to do this, then your goal to have people who might
> otherwise be working on free software waste less time on non-free software
> isn't being achieved, and, in fact, quite the opposite is happening.

> Likewise, it's generally more effort to maintain an installer package,
> than not. See also the comments about managing contrib packages for
> testing if non-free disappears.

I think this also leads to a question that's subtly important.  If
non-free were removed from the Debian archives, there would be a demand
for still being able to apt-get these packages, a demand that at least
some DDs are inclined to respond to.  The question is, are any of the
people who currently work on the installer and archive infrastructure
inclined to reallocate their time to setting up a separate non-free
infrastructure if this GR passes?  I think that would be a very strong
reason to vote against.

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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