Re: non-free firmware in kernel modules, aggregation and unclear copyright notice.
From: Eric W. Biederman
Date: Thu Apr 07 2005 - 10:46:49 EST
Sven Luther <sven.luther@xxxxxxxxxx> writes:
> On Wed, Apr 06, 2005 at 01:22:36PM -0600, Eric W. Biederman wrote:
> > For tg3 a transition period shouldn't be needed as firmware loading
> > is only needed on old/buggy hardware which is not the common case.
> > Or to support advanced features which can be disabled.
> > I am fairly certain in that case the firmware came from the bcm5701
> > broadcom driver for the tg3 which I think is gpl'd. So the firmware
> > may legitimately be under the GPL.
> So, where is the source for it ?
The GPL'd driver that broadcom distributes. The history of tg3.c
is that broadcom's bcm57xx driver drove the hardware correctly but
not linux so it was rewritten from scratch.
Beyond that you need to talk to Broadcom. But if the originator
of the bits distributes them gpl from a redistribution point the
kernel is fine.
It sounds like you are now looking at the question of are the
huge string of hex characters the preferred form for making
modifications to firmware. Personally I would be surprised
but those hunks are small enough it could have been written
in machine code.
So I currently have no reason to believe that anything has been
done improperly with that code.
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