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Re: Debian and Redhat - are most linux users missing the point?



On Sat, 27 Feb 1999, Frankie wrote:
> 
> On the basis that linux is soundly based on ideology and a belief that the
> internet should remain free, debian may well be the best distribution, and
> on that basis, redhat the worst.
> 

Just for perspective: Red Hat is by far the best commercial distribution
from this point of view. They GPL all or almost all of the stuff they
develop - admin tools, RPM itself. They are paying 6 guys to work on Gtk,
Gnome, and Enlightenment. The CEO of the company and other important
people there have specifically said that their business model involves
writing free software and contributing to the community. There is
relatively little non-free software with the distribution, and most of it
is clearly labelled as such. They took a stand against KDE (back when that
was necessary/appropriate).

Contrast with Caldera and SuSE: they bundle all sorts of non-free
software, generally do not release their code as free, and deliberately
obfuscate which bundled software is free and which is not. They both did
the wrong thing with KDE (and similar lower-profile cases), and neither
has made any public statements supportive of free software. 

So I wouldn't target Red Hat. They may include a few semi-free programs
like qmail or mysql in their distribution, but other than that they have
been model corporate citizens and everything we can ask for in a
commercial free software support vendor. 

Havoc



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