Re: Dual-Licensing Linux Kernel with GPL V2 and GPL V3

From: Nicolas Mailhot
Date: Fri Jun 15 2007 - 07:32:22 EST

Le Ven 15 juin 2007 12:53, Jesper Juhl a Ãcrit :
> On 15/06/07, Nicolas Mailhot <nicolas.mailhot@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>> >> > by your argument, the user has some "right to modify the
>> software", on
>> >> > that piece of hardware it bought which had free software on it,
>> correct?
>> >>
>> >> Yes. This means the hardware distributor who put the software in
>> >> there must not place roadblocks that impede the user to get where
>> she
>> >> wants with the software, not that the vendor must offer the user
>> a
>> >> sport car to take her there.
>> >Okay. That means that if I ship Linux on a ROM chip I have to
>> somehow
>> make
>> >it so that the person purchasing the chip can modify the copy of
>> Linux
>> >installed on the chip *if* I want to follow both the spirit and the
>> letter
>> >of the GPLv2.
>> The key word there is "can"
>> You don't have to send the buyer the hardware design, replace the
>> ROM
>> with a flash, use a rom socket that allows easy switching etc.
>> But you can not add measures to your hardware specifically designed
>> to
>> stop the user from modifying the GPL software part. Especially if
>> those measures are something like DRM that do not make the tinkering
>> just technically hard, but legally forbidden.
>> As long as the restrictions result from technical choices not
>> targetted at forbidding changes you're ok.
> That's simply not true.
> As long as you get a copy of the source code for the software that's
> running on the hardware it's OK. That's all the GPLv2 says.

You'll note I was answering to a message about what the GPL intended,
not the strict literal reading of the GPLv2 words.

And what the GPL authors intended is obvious from the fact it all
started with a printer driver and the need to change the software used
to control this particular hardware (not some mythical other device
without manufacturer restrictions

Nicolas Mailhot

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