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Re: more evil firmwares found

Marco d'Itri wrote:

> On Apr 22, Evan Prodromou <evan@debian.org> wrote:
>>     >> Well, I think that's a mistake. At the very least, we should
>>     >> contact the firmware developers telling them why the stuff's
>>     >> coming out of Debian, and what they can do to get it back in.
>>     Md> "Nothing", in most cases.
>> What do you mean? That most will choose not to provide firmware
>> assembly code (or whatever)?
> That almost every vendor will choose to not provide the firmware source
> for one or more of these reasons:
> - they do not own the rights (think about VxWorks used by some devices)
> - they do not want to reveal information about how their hardware works
> - they do not want to distribute the needed toolchain

Hey, if it happens it happens.  That's what people said would happen with
software, too.  At least we might get explicit, actual permission to
distribute some of them in non-free (the first three pieces of firmware I
found appear to be distributed with false copyright statements, and the
next one had no permission to distribute).  That would be a hell of an
improvement from the point of view of legal safety.

> - they are forbidden by the FCC
This is a myth; I've explained this already.

> - only a few loons care about it
Stop insulting people who have principles just because you don't.  And
again, that's what people said about free software too.

> My opinion is that binary-only firmware files in the current situation
> actually *help* free software because they let vendors ship free drivers
Partly-free drivers.  Sure.  Fine.  So ship the firmware in non-free (if you
can get permission); I have no complaints.  That's what non-free is there
for, after all.

> (think about the Intel Centrino wireless cards).

There are none so blind as those who will not see.

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