Re: non-free firmware: driver in main or contrib?
Matthew Garrett <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes:
> Glenn Maynard <email@example.com> wrote:
>> I don't understand how there's any disagreement in this case: it's clearly
>> software, covered by the DFSG (or at least the one Debian will be using
>> soon), it's required (a Depends), and clearly non-free.
> On the other hand, if it's clearly software when it's on CD then it's
> clearly software when it's on eeprom.
False. That's why we call it firmware, not just "software living on a device".
It's an implementation detail of the hardware that they happen to have
shipped a microprocessor and a hardwired program. If the program had
been burned into a circuit in an FPGA, would you still call it
If it's a single-use PROM, is it still software?
>From the point of view of the driver, the device is just a device. It
gets... driven. That's it. No need to consider the things inside and
force decisions about software or not onto them.
Anything the user's being told to copy to /usr/local/something, on the
other hand, is clearly software.
> If it's a dependency when it's on CD, it's equally a dependency when
> it's on eeprom. The only distinction that can be drawn is whether or
> not it ends up on the user's hard drive. Surely the storage
> mechanism used does not alter the freeness of something?
Surely the implementation details of a device do not alter the
freeness of it?
Brian Sniffen firstname.lastname@example.org