Re: Bug#502959: general: raff.debian.org uses non-free software
On Tue, Oct 21, 2008, Romain Beauxis wrote:
> If I recall well, one of the origin of the GNU fondation was the fact that
> having free drivers alowed one to actually *fix* issues he may have with his
> *own* hardware. Then, the very same reasoning can apply to binary firmware.
Hardware can suffer from bugs which you can not fix; I'm happy to put
firmware in the same bucket as long as there is a clear interface on
which I can rely to get it to work most of the time.
I'm using Google daily, but I don't have the source code that's running
on their servers. I don't mind shipping a firmware blob just like I
don't mind having to press the power button to boot my laptop. If it's
a prerequirement to get the hardware to work with free drivers, and we
have the rights to redistribute this blob, I see no problem.
> So, yes this is a brand new issue, that comes from the new way of designing
> hardware. But that doesn't mean we should give up and remain behind the line
> that was drawn 20 (or so) years ago. We now should also ask for open source
> firmware for the very same reason that this huge effort toward free drivers
> was done. If we did it for drivers, there's no reason we can't suceed for
Happy if such a project is started outside of Debian, or within Debian,
but not if it affects all current Debian users right now.