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Re: [PROPOSED] Change package relations policy to remove referenc es to non-free from main



On Wed, Dec 01, 1999 at 01:45:41PM +0100, Ronald van Loon wrote:
> person A is installing Debian on his system. However, he has some
> restrictions as to what packages he can use (for example, because his
> distribution only has certain packages available (practical example), or
> because his employer has placed certain restrictions as to what licenses
> are considered 'risk-free to use' within a company (political example)).
> 
> Why not have a Legal: or License: field that specifies the license(s)
> the package adheres to? This does not impact dpkg/apt in any way (as I
> would assume they would ignore the field), and the only programs that
> need changes would be those that select the packages, as several people
> have proposed. This also saves package maintainers of keeping track of
> legal issues that may not be necessary anyway. You could then have a
> config file that lists all legal licenses that would be accepted on a
> certain system.

License field is a not very good idea.  Essentially you want the license
summed up into one line.  That's fine for GPL stuff sure, but the stuff in
main is risk free or it wouldn't be there.  That leaves the stuff in
non-free which is almost always not possible to sum up into one line.
Also it seems there's some legal risk to SPI and individual Debian
developers involved with doing that.  It gets real messy real fast.

It's not worth the trouble.


> If you would enforce a certain license-policy, I suppose dpkg could be
> changed as well, to prevent temptation to install things by hand, with a
> --force-legal to override.
> 
> You could even get rid of non-free this way. Or am I being too ambitious
> here ?

You can get rid of non-free easily, just remove it from sources.list.
It's an interesting idea, but it's come up before and it just would not be
good for us to implement for a lot of reasons.

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