[Fsf-Debian] few arguments to FSF
Paul van der Vlis
paul at vandervlis.nl
Fri Aug 10 13:47:23 UTC 2012
Op 10-08-12 14:36, Dmitry Smirnov schreef:
> On Fri, 10 Aug 2012 19:23:41 Paul van der Vlis wrote:
>> Yes, but only because you bought wrong hardware ;-)
> My bad, but such mistakes will be made again and again.
You are right, it's difficult.
> Another example: three years ago I started working for a company who already
> bought two Dell PowerEdge 2950 servers for a new project. I was promoting
> Debian to them and in that regards it was absolutely critical for Debian to
> have Broadcom firmware necessary to bring onboard NICs to life.
> Without such firmware in 'non-free' I would fail to do my job and ultimately
> Debian would fail. This is a small price to pay for luxury of having Debian on
> every single machine available - if you have many, some of them would require
> proprietary drivers eventually.
I would do the same.
Sometimes it's an idea not-to-use the onboard NIC, but to buy another
PCI-E one. It's a problem that many boot-CD's do not have such firmware.
Sometimes you need them when there are problems.
>> I can understand that. The point is that many people who use Debian do
>> not buy such hardware, so they do not need such drivers, so they don't
>> upload them to non-free. It's a circle.
> Certainly it's nice if you can buy hardware for Debian.
> Often it's about how to use Debian for existent hardware which is already
> bought without such considerations
After some time this will be less a problem.
> of if you're hiring a server from datacentre.
There is choice in organizations who rent servers.
> I'm not prepared to give up Debian for the lack of non-free firmware/driver
> which they would use anyway but from CentOS/Fedora/RedHat/younameit.
> Non-free helps me to use Debian whenever I can and helps me to promote Debian.
> Together with Debian we promote a good attitude against non-free not to ban it
> entirely but to discourage and eventually decommission.
But the packages could be moved to something what's not called "Debian".
>> I don't think we need it *in Debian*. We need it, and we need good
>> quality, but it could also come from another good organization.
> This is an organisational question which is not that important to me.
> It really depends on FSF point of view - if they would be more happy
> with us still maintaining non-free under different governance so be
No, not only. I think we should move it away even when the FSF still
calls us a nonfree distro.
> However I
> believe we need 'non-free', possibly with different regulations to accommodate
> "good stuff" like documentation. Non-DFSG documentation is better to be a part
> of the project.
In Debian we want to have the freedom to change something, and you may
not do that in such documentation. People can read it on the internet is
>> I think we should move non-free parts from Debian, and put it into the
>> repositories of something else, I call that "nonfree.org".
> Somehow I think it is little more difficult than just move it away....
It could be difficult if you want to have it completely separated.
And a point is, who wants to do that work?
It could be relative easy when it would be the same system with only a
different hostname. Not sure about that...
>> I think we can get rid of contrib and non-free by moving it to something
>> else. Something we can trust. The same as we have now but not under the
>> name "Debian" anymore.
> Then we would loose some of the control that we have over non-free. How would
> we guarantee it won't become more evil?
> One of the benefits we have in non-free that it is maintained with the same
> procedures so at least it have some qualities.
nonfree.org could only allow DD's and DA's to upload. And we could ask
the maintainers who are doing now work for non-free and contrib to
continue that on nonfree.org.
Paul van der Vlis.
Paul van der Vlis Linux systeembeheer, Groningen
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