Linux Intern - Free Software as binaries, but no source

Alessandro Rubini rubini at
Mon Oct 1 13:25:21 UTC 2001


> It comes with a Debian GNU/Linux CD. But it seems that they don't
> tell you where to get the sources.
> IMHO, this violates the GPL

Actually, I don't think telling where sources are is enough. You must
provide a written offer valid for at least three years.

While providing a pointer to the source is not a bad idea at all (and
not providing one is definitely bad practice), id doesn't make the
single-cd redistribution compliant.

No magazine I know about is GPL-compliant. They only distribute
binaries and don't offer access to source code (nor do they provide
the user with a written offer -- which they wouldn't be able to comply
with anyways).

Since this kind of violation (if confirmed, that I'm not sure about)
is not a real problem, I never cared about.  I don't think it's not a
real problem as long as stuff redistributetd comes from a well-known
place, or at least known (or made-known as you suggest).

I'd like to get other opinions about this issue, though, as I'm not a

BTW: anyone with comments about embedded software and the GPL?


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