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Re: Don't understand the trouble with firmware !

On Sun, May 16, 2004 at 06:34:09PM +0200, Michelle Konzack wrote:
> Am 2004-05-15 22:18:16, schrieb Francesco Paolo Lovergine:
> >On Sat, May 15, 2004 at 07:02:03PM +0200, Michelle Konzack wrote:
> >> 
> >> I think, there is realy no problem to put closed-source firmware in 
> >> "non-free" but make it easy to get the firmware downloaded (with wget) 
> >> if we can not distribute it with Debian (like the mgmt.o)
> >> 
> >
> >The problem is that some of that firmwares are needed e.g. for some
> >ethernet cards (which could cause installation of the system impractical 
> >or difficult on many off-the-shelf systems) or for common graphic cards.
> If they need Firmware on Start-Up for installation, 
> how do you install M$ Win eXPlode ?
> I do not know any hardware which does not work with the c...y Win...
> So the $WINUSER mut install Windows andafter this he mut install a 
> closed source Driver... 
> This -eq with Debian main/non-free

Indeed I said 'impractical or difficult'. I did not say impossible.
That's a difference. If I had to install on a system with a
non-supported (because their firmwares have been removed in debian
kernels) eth adapter and/or disk controller, there are very little
chances to install a plain debian distro directly. Of course many
experienced users could install using a custom kernel, or an host
distribution or what else. The point is that many users are not
so experienced to do that. They simply will not use debian at all, or
will use a non-free-based debian 'mutants' - BTW I suspect we will have
many of those beasts around soon after sarge, at this point.
Knoppix is already used as an host distro to install woody in many
cases. I hope this will not become the rule to install any debian
release in a not too far future.

> >That's not a simple problem of 'modules'. In some cases it could require 
> >to patch properly and rebuild the X server, the kernel or what else. 
> >Of course all that could be done, but I personally cannot find a good 
> >reason why John Newbie could be find convenient to do that, instead of 
> >installing Fedora or what else.
> >
> >And what if next processors will require downloading firmware to work?
> Brain Oops !
> microde ?

Are you joking or what? What when Intel processors
will require the OS loading binary-only firmware to work in fully operational
mode? Today processors yet (are able to) work in different modes at
boot. That's nothing that prevents common microprocessors to work in
this manner, and that could be practical for Palladium and other evils... 

Francesco P. Lovergine

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