[OpenAFS] Fedora kernel builds

Jeffrey Altman jaltman@secure-endpoints.com
Sat, 15 Mar 2008 15:01:41 -0400

Buhrmaster, Gary wrote:
>>> Then again I've also just considered a GPL module that wraps all the
>>> GPL-only APIs and just re-exports them. Hey, THAT module is GPL!  ;)
>>> This whole GPL-only thing is just stupid.
>> Read http://kerneltrap.org/Linux/NDISwrapper_and_the_GPL

> GPL(only) is not stupid.  Stallman has a specific
> agenda with that particular license.  It is not good,
> nor evil.  It just (as with any license) has
> specific requirements/expectations.  What may be
> stupid is that not everyone understands *any* license
> and the agenda behind it before they choose it.  Sun
> CDDL, IBM Public License, all have agendas behind them.
> (Is there not a story about dealing with the devil?)
> For developer types, BSD (type) licenses allows
> one to take and to contribute under flexible
> conditions.  GPL (type) licenses allows one to
> take and requires one to contribute under specific
> conditions.  The argument over which is more "free"
> is never ending.  However, a license is a license,
> and once you pick (or have it picked for you), you
> have to continue to abide by it (or get yourself
> good lawyers).  If you do not like the license,
> do not agree to it.  Easier said than done, of
> course.


I certainly believe that developers are free to choose
whatever license they wish.  Of course, we did not choose
the IPL10 license for OpenAFS and much of the source code
predates Linux and its interfaces by more than a decade.
Even if we wanted to relicense we couldn't.

At first GPL_ONLY was being applied only to new interfaces
and all of the existing interfaces up to that point were
supposed to be left alone.  Now it appears that efforts
are being made to re-implement preexisting interfaces
and label the new implementations GPL_ONLY without regard
for what breaks.

There will soon come a day when enough of the kernel
interfaces are GPL_ONLY that it is impossible for OpenAFS
to exist on Linux and that is a shame while the kernel
developers are exercising their freedom to apply the
license of their choosing to the code they write, they
are in the process taking away the freedoms of the
end users who will no longer be able to access data they
require or use camera, scanner, printer, raid drive, etc
that does not have a driver under an acceptable license.

I do not look forward to that future.

Jeffrey Altman