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Re: kernel firmwares: GR proposal

Raul Miller <moth.debian@gmail.com> writes:

> What strikes me as ironic, with these proposals, is that we ran into
> something like this problem back in the 90s, back during the initial
> adoption of the DFSG, and we had to solve that problem then: we created
> the non-free and contrib sections.

> For some reason, these sections are no longer seen as adequate.

Not for some reason, for some very obvious reasons.  They're not adequate
as an immediate solution to this problem because separating the firmware
from the packages that currently contain it is hard and needs development
and because d-i currently can't (as I understand these threads) cope with
that split.

I really don't think that, if all that support and infrastructure were in
place and we had a straightforward way of pulling out the firmware and
help from upstream in doing so going forward, anyone would object that
strongly to using contrib and non-free.  I expect there would be some
grumbling, but if it still all worked, I bet everyone would be willing to
deal with it.

The problem is, we're technically not there.  Just moving it to non-free
and contrib isn't a complete statement of the solution.  The complete
solution (assuming we want Debian to keep working on that hardware)
involves a bunch more work that is going to take a while to do.

It's a contentious issue because it's a pragmatism tradeoff against ideals
whose importance are not universally agreed on.  Those are just inherently
difficult questions.  It's not really useful to imply that they should be

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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