Sony PS2 Linux kit -- violating the GPL?

Alex Hudson home at
Wed May 22 21:00:41 UTC 2002

On Wed, 2002-05-22 at 21:47, phil hunt wrote:
> Sony have released in Europe a Linux kit for their Playstation 2 
> game console. (Previously, the Linux kit was not available in 
> Europe).
> Unfortunately their licensing terms (visible on the web at
> <>) appear to be in violation
> of the GPL. The EULA states: NON COMMERCIAL USE ONLY. You may 
> install and use the Software only with a PlayStation??Computer 
> Entertainment System. You may not copy, modify or transfer the 
> Software"

It also states:

	This product contains Sony Computer Entertainment Inc
	proprietary software ("Software") and third party proprietary
	software ("Third Party Software") 

Sadly, it is not possible to infringe the GPL unless you actually
licence your software with it :/ Given they describe it as software they
have copyright on, and is proprietary, it's likely that this EULA
applies to the parts of the software that they have added to the kit to
get it to work - hardware drivers, physics modules spring to mind (I
assume the 3rd party software they refer to is their physics engine).

Now, if they have modified GPL software in order to make their system
work, that is a different matter, but one that (I suspect) would be
difficult to prove. If someone recieves a CD and there is no invitation
to the source for the software, then it's possible there is an
infringement, and it's worth finding out. And of course, we should
invite them to make Free what is currently proprietary so that people
are able to distribute Free Software based on this system - TuxRacer,
bzflag, et al, should be possible.


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