[linux-elitists] OpenBSD Activism Shows Drivers Can Be Freed (fwd from brian-slashdotnews@hyperreal.org)

Eugen Leitl eugen@leitl.org
Tue Nov 2 00:00:27 PST 2004

----- Forwarded message from brian-slashdotnews@hyperreal.org -----

From: brian-slashdotnews@hyperreal.org
Date: 2 Nov 2004 02:26:03 -0000
To: slashdotnews@hyperreal.org
Subject: OpenBSD Activism Shows Drivers Can Be Freed
User-Agent: SlashdotNewsScooper/0.0.3

Link: http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=04/11/01/2321205
Posted by: timothy, on 2004-11-01 23:18:00

   from the mindshare-will-follow dept.
   [1]grey writes "The Age has a story up about how the [2]OpenBSD
   community has been [3]contacting wireless chipset vendors to license
   their [4]firmware binaries under terms that would allow for free
   redistribution. This is important, because even with existing [5]GPL
   and [6]BSD licensed drivers for these chipsets, the drivers don't
   function without first loading [7]onerously licensed firmware binaries
   which can only be acquired from the vendor, not shipped by an OSS
   provider." (Read more, below.)

   [8]Click Here 

   grey continues "This means that currently, these wireless NIC's don't
   work [9]out of the box on OSS install or [10]boot media. In just the
   first 4 days, hundreds of users wrote and called vendors, and already
   2 vendors freed their firmware, and several others are in discussions
   with [11]Theo de Raadt about taking similar steps. 

   We need your help! [12]TI has still not responded at all. You can call
   or write to [13]Bill Carney, - [14]Director of Business Development of
   TI's [15]WNBU to add to the approximately 400 [16]well [17]written
   [18]messages the OpenBSD community has already sent to TI. We hope
   that you'll help, and if you do please keep messages [19]polite and to
   the point. Please remember, we are not asking for the vendors to open
   source their firmware under the GPL or BSD licenses (though we
   wouldn't complain if they did). Instead, ask if they would simply
   [20]email Theo to open discussions on licensing their firmware
   binaries under terms that allow for free redistribution. If changed,
   these firmware binaries would then be able to be included with OSS
   software and function with existing BSD and GPL licensed device
   drivers from the start.

   You can find other contacts for target vendors [21]here, [22]here,
   [23]here, and [24]here, and it can't hurt to sign [25]this petition.
   These changes aide all OSS efforts, not just OpenBSD. As you can see
   from the [26]OpenBSD community's results already, contacting these
   vendors really does make a difference. We're sure that with the
   numbers of OSS minded readers in the Slashdot community you can really
   help with the heavy lifting where fewer numbers of BSD users have
   already begun to succeed, and all Open Source Software users will


   1. http://undeadly.org/
   2. http://www.openbsd.org/
   3. http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/10/29/1098992287663.html
   4. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-misc&m=109889560011966&w=2
   5. http://ipw2200.sourceforge.net/
   6. http://damien.bergamini.free.fr/ipw/
   7. http://ipw2200.sourceforge.net/firmware.php?fid=2
   8. http://ads.osdn.com/?ad_id=5659&alloc_id=12309&site_id=1&request_id=1982658&op=click&page=%2farticle%2epl
   9. http://www.oreillynet.com/pub/wlg/5690
  10. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-cvs&m=109828769902650&w=2
  11. mailto:deraadt@cvs.openbsd.org
  12. http://www.ti.com/
  13. mailto:bcarney@ti.com
  14. http://www.hometoys.com/htinews/oct02/interviews/ti/carney.htm
  15. http://www.ti.com/recruit/docs/us/santarosa.shtml
  16. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-misc&m=109894673916870&w=2
  17. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-misc&m=109900235724594&w=2
  18. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-misc&m=109902974632485&w=2
  19. http://www.datasync.com/~rogerspl/Advocacy-HOWTO.html
  20. mailto:deraadt@cvs.openbsd.org
  21. http://undeadly.org/cgi?action=article&sid=20041026185704
  22. http://undeadly.org/cgi?action=article&sid=20041027193425
  23. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-misc&m=109898816125633&w=2
  24. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-misc&m=109898246930023&w=2
  25. http://www.petitiononline.com/xanthan/petition.html
  26. http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=openbsd-misc&m=109899939518417&w=2

----- End forwarded message -----
Eugen* Leitl <a href="http://leitl.org">leitl</a>
ICBM: 48.07078, 11.61144            http://www.leitl.org
8B29F6BE: 099D 78BA 2FD3 B014 B08A  7779 75B0 2443 8B29 F6BE
http://moleculardevices.org         http://nanomachines.net
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