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Re: Making Debian available

 ❦ 23 janvier 2021 15:39 +02, Jonathan Carter:

> But the sentiment above and in other similar messages were that the
> completely free images are broken for many users that might need some
> non-free firmware. This is simply not true. I've only ever installed
> using the free images, and then afterwards just install the firmware
> packages I actually need. On all my thinkpads this was typically just
> the intel wifi firmware, which is super quick and simple, on my AMD
> laptop I needed some amd graphics firmware which wasn't on the media,
> but also a very quick install and it works flawlessly, so I think
> implying that the free images are completely unusable for people who
> might need firmware is an unreasonably large stretch. I also like that I
> know exactly which non-free firmware packages are installed on my
> system.

This is an anecdotical evidence. To my knowledge, it's not possible to
make a wireless card work without a proprietary firmware. As laptops are
getting thinner, the Ethernet port is getting away and dongles to get
port the RJ45 port are not bundled anymore.

> Again, I'm not saying that there shouldn't be images that contain
> non-free firmware, but dismissing the images that don't have firmware on
> as useless is harmful and misleading.

If a novice user is presented with "download this image if you need
non-free firmware", "download this image otherwise", they will likely
choose the second, won't they? We would just succeed in confusing our
users and send them to a more friendly distribution.

As for myself, firmwares were burnt in a ROM before, they didn't get
less free by being side-loaded but at least they can now be updated. So,
I really don't care about how many firmwares I have on my laptop.
Avoid temporary variables.
            - The Elements of Programming Style (Kernighan & Plauger)

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