Microsoft prohibits GPLed work via licensing of CIFS standards

Simo Sorce idra at
Sun Apr 7 10:37:34 UTC 2002

On Sun, 2002-04-07 at 01:18, Luciano Miguel Ferreira Rocha wrote:
> On Sat, Apr 06, 2002 at 10:51:09PM +0000, MJ Ray wrote:
> > > If they can't get Samba as part of the package, many users won't choose a
> > > free system, they'll chose a proprietary system. [...]
> > 
> > Will they still, if we have a better alternative?
> Most use samba because it's the best alternative for CIFS servicing, not
> because CIFS is the best remote filesystem.


> > Surely Samba is normally used during migration.
> I don't think so. Some substitute win32 servers for free unix servers, but
> remain with win32 clients because of the "habituation" caused by Word and
> a dumb GUI. Some even use free unix servers without the knowledge of the
> lesser technical managers.

Sometimes that is true, but generally people stay with win32 clients
because they miss crtical apps to perform they work or need time to make
a full migration.
I'm not saying that everyone is near to swith to a free desktop
operating system, but I know many would make the switch if all
applications they need were there or if porting their custom environment
and home made application can be ported easily.

So Samba is used for migration and also as is, many NAS vendors lately
offer CIFS appliances that have samba under the cover.

> > You never know, availability of a more secure remote
> > mount may make them have to implement it in their OS at last.  Then we have
> > the upper hand.
> Availability of more secure remote mounts hasn't yet made then implement
> them. Microsoft is in a position were it can dictate the standars (most of
> them) used by clients, and those trying to fight Microsoft then have to
> provide both server and clients with support for the same services.

True, you can see the Pc-NFS has never made it into the MS world.

I want also reassure some people on the destiny if Samba.
Samba has been made without that specification and we are not going to
read it so we are not bound to those terms as far as I know.

And note that the conditions posed are not a license, they form a
contract. Copyright laws do not permit a license to dictate the license
of other (non derivative) works, and as far as I know also the patents
law do not permit that (but of course a licensor may impose the
acceptance of a contract as a condition to concede the use of techniques
subject to the patent).
Hopefully we have some chances to avoid patents on software in Europe.


Simo Sorce
Una scelta di liberta': Software Libero.
A choice of freedom: Free Software.

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