"Michael Poole" <email@example.com> wrote in message
Kieran Lloyd writes:
I am considering selling some home made PC's on Ebay, the thing is I
want to sell these pre-installed with Debian Linux. Would Debian have
any argument with this? I will obviously be advertising that the Pc's
have Debian installed however I will not be charging for it I would only
be charging a mark up on my hardware. Please advise if this would be
It seems odd to me that no one has yet pointed out the congruences
between this request and that of "Nexenta". For example, GRUB and
Linux are both licensed under the GPL. Both would be included with
these retail systems and would be written to locate and call functions
within the BIOS; that is, GRUB and Linux would be dynamically linked
against the (presumably non-free) BIOS.
The difference is that Debian does not distribute the BIOS.
The exception in the GPL says this:
However, as a special exception, the source code distributed need not
include anything that is normally
distributed (in either source or binary form) with the major components
(compiler, kernel, and so on) of the
operating system on which the executable runs, unless that component itself
accompanies the executable.
This would prevent the CDDL'ed kernel from being a problem, except that the
kernel would be distributed with the programs when we ship CDs.
The BIOS is most certainly part of the "operating system" in which the
bootloaders run. We do not distribute the BIOS. Therefore the above clause
does most certainly resolve the issue.