Re: Why is Nvidia given GPL'd code to use in closed source drivers?

David Schwartz (
Tue, 31 Dec 2002 11:11:18 -0800

On Tue, 31 Dec 2002 10:03:14 -0500 (EST), Bill Davidsen wrote:
>On Tue, 31 Dec 2002, David Schwartz wrote:

>>II don't expect anyone to GPL unless they think they get more benefit
>>GPLing than the potential harm done. People GPL code because they want to
>>'donate' it to improve the open source movement, community, and code base.
>>Attempting to arm twist such donations is worse than foolish. You think the
>>open source community should be a bunch of bullies? Convince people open
>>source is best, and avoid them if they don't agree.

>Certainly anyone who has had a problem, posted an oops, and been told that
>no one will even look at a dump from a system with the nvidia driver might
>think they were being bullied...

There's a difference between people thinking they are being bullied and
being a bunch of bullies. ;)

I would hope that the situation would be explained politely -- kind of like
this: "Unfortunately, with closed-source software, only someone who has the
source code can debug it. If you can replicate the problem without any
closed-source drivers, we'll do our best to help you. But if you can only
replicate the problem with a closed-source module installed, odds are the
problem is in that module, and even if it wasn't, we couldn't track it down."

That doesn't really seem like bullying and helps to clarify the
disadvantages of using closed-source software.


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