[sane-devel] Legal Aspects

Ullrich Sigwanz usigwanz at lycos.de
Tue Mar 28 14:46:18 UTC 2006

Hi all,

This is a question that I have in my back head for years and which I tried to let it be there forever. But the more devices I debug hardware-wise, the more I am scared.

QUESTION: Is reverse engineering of hardware protocols legal at all?

EPKOWA (e.g.) state in their License agreement, that ....

  ...You may neither reverse engineer, reverse compile, reverse
     assemble nor otherwise attempt to analyse those parts of the
     Program that were provided to you in executable or object code

Wikipedia on the other side states, that reverse engineering protocols
will be legal in any case, because the protocol it is a property of the device
(which you have bought, and which you must be able to test and operate)
and using this knowledge on a non-profit basis cannot be prohibited.

Though I am still unsure, what is safe and what not.

Can any of you pass me an URL to regulations,
which will enable me releasing my next project safely?

Thank you very much


Schnell und einfach ohne Anschlusswechsel zur Lycos DSL Flatrate wechseln und 3 Monate kostenlos ab effektiven 5,21 EUR pro Monat im ersten Jahr surfen.

More information about the sane-devel mailing list