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Re: firmware-linux

tyler <tyler.smith@mail.mcgill.ca> wrote:
> I just noticed a new package in squeeze, firmware-linux, which contains
> the binary firmware that was formerly included in Debian kernels [...]

> What I want to know is what kinds of problems I might experience when I
> move to a 'free' kernel? [...]

It's now become /really/ awkward to install Debian on DELL 2950s or any
other kit containing Broadcom NICs. You need to have a USB stick
that contans the relevant firmware package, and have that present
during the installation process. In and of itself this is only mildly
fiddly. However, it gets /very/ interesting indeed when using the
Remote Access features in LOM grade servers such as the 2950. (Virtual
console. Virtual CDROM. Fortunately, also virtual USB stick.)

If I wasn't such a diehard Debian advocate, I'd have seriously considered
moving to another distribution. On the other hand, I can completely
understand /why/ Debian installations no longer include non-free
software. I'm not completely sure where I sit on the Convenience vs
FOSS seesaw.


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