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Linux Software Operating Systems BSD

Linux Wireless Driver Violates BSD License? 355

Posted by kdawson
from the put-it-back dept.
bsdphx writes "After years of encouragement from the OpenBSD community for others to use Reyk Floeter's free Atheros wireless driver, it seems that the Linux world is finally listening. Unfortunately, they seem to think that they can strip the BSD license right out of it."
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Linux Wireless Driver Violates BSD License?

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  • Re:No, it doesn't. (Score:1, Interesting)

    by sigzero (914876) on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @08:05AM (#20396547)
    I think that they are more upset with the attitude more than anything. If you read the LKML threads it is matter of fact "there I changed it and now it is GPL2 only".
  • Strange (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Ajehals (947354) <a.halsall@pirateparty.org.uk> on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @08:06AM (#20396557) Homepage Journal
    The License says:

    Permission to use, copy, modify, and distribute this software for any
    - * purpose with or without fee is hereby granted, provided that the above
    - * copyright notice and this permission notice appear in all copies.
    Granted that section has been removed but the copyright notices referred to:

    * Copyright (c) 2004-2007 Reyk Floeter
        * Copyright (c) 2006-2007 Nick Kossifidis
    Are still there, it is then shown to have been newly licensed under the GPL (Which you can do with the BSD as I understand it, you could re-license a derivative or even the original code as you wish).

    Personally I would have left in some detail to show that the code was initially issued under the BSD, I would find that meets with my own moral requirements, I would also include a link to the place the BSD code originated, but there is no requirement to do so. That is the difference between the BSD and the GPL, Previously this code could have been closed (and If BSD versions were lost then it would remain closed) under the GPL it now cannot be closed.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think I read the diff correctly.
  • Re:Strange (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Ajehals (947354) <a.halsall@pirateparty.org.uk> on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @08:13AM (#20396591) Homepage Journal
    really really bad form to reply again to my on post (but since when has that stopped me..), but reading further there is this:

    - * Alternatively, this software may be distributed under the terms of the
    - * GNU General Public License ("GPL") version 2 as published by the Free
    - * Software Foundation.
    Not sure what should apply now, although in spirit releasing it under the GPL with the original author listed as copyright holder seems OK in spirit and probably OK legally too.. (IANAL)
  • Mod parent up! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Eivind Eklund (5161) on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @08:23AM (#20396705) Journal
    Parent has insightfully noticed his own error. And the error is modded up. So mod the parent up.

    The move is clearly against the BSD license. (Also, combining GPLv2ed code and BSDed code is subtly against the GPL, as the requirement to reproduce the license - as shown and violated here - is an extra requirement compared to the GPL, violating the "no additional restrictions" clause of the GPL.)

    Eivind.

  • OpenBSD Wireless (Score:3, Interesting)

    by cyberkahn (398201) on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @09:35AM (#20397453) Homepage
    OpenBSD Wireless is something the OpenBSD team does really well. I had a brand new laptop, in which I first installed Ubuntu 7.04. Well, wireless didn't work and after reading all the hacks that would be required I decided to install OpenBSD out of curiosity. Well, everything worked with no hacks required. Kudos to the OpenBSD team who perform such miracles as well as all the other wonderful things they have done for the open source community e.g. OpenSSH.
  • by StormReaver (59959) on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @12:47PM (#20400419)
    "Except that it's the author and copyright holder who did it, and he's allowed to do what he likes with his copyrighted works."

    The submitter wrote some of the driver, but there are a few other names in the Copyright list. There is no information in the article indicating their (dis)approval.
  • Re:Hmmmm (Score:3, Interesting)

    by MysteriousPreacher (702266) on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @12:47PM (#20400433) Journal
    I'll concede that point, I think I was in a strangely mellow mood when I originally posted. I can understand Theo's frustration, consdidering how simple the BSD licence is, but I certainly don't see the "OMG" approach as anything but a last restort.
  • Re:No, it doesn't. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by e9th (652576) <{e9th} {at} {tupodex.com}> on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @03:42PM (#20403065)
    I think the intent is to allow you to use the code under either license, but not to redistribute it under just one.

    I prefer fries, but if someone asks me to pass the menu, I shouldn't cross out mashed potatoes before doing so.
  • by einhverfr (238914) <chris...travers@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @05:21PM (#20404525) Homepage Journal
    I think the difference is how freedom is best preserved. In a BSDL community, you encourage everyone to contribute because it benefits them and everyone else by doing so, and it hurts them not to contribute. This works becasue if one doesn't contribute back then it becomes prohibitive to upgrade to the latest version fairly quickly, but if one does contribute then everyone else can supply patches and improvements. Furtermore, if two people create a different fix to the same problem and only one contributes the patch, the person who didn't gets screwed, especially if their version is better since now they have to maintain the difference or lose functionality.

    BSD uses economics to protect freedom. GPL tries to use the force of law.

    Generally I prefer the BSD approach but tend to feel safer with the GPL :-)
  • by Thomas Charron (1485) <twaffle@gmail. c o m> on Wednesday August 29, 2007 @05:30PM (#20404655) Homepage
    Please cite me any source of information that says dual license means you are bound by two separate and distinct licenses. All definitions of Dual License I have seen are an either license context, not BOTH licenses. A good example is MySQL. Dual licensed under a commercial license where anyone can do what they want for a fee. They in no way are required to redistribute the code if they choose a commercial license.

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