Gentoo Archives: gentoo-dev

From: "Robin H. Johnson" <robbat2@g.o>
To: gentoo-dev@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-dev] License group proposal: @BINARY-REDISTRIBUTABLE
Date: Thu, 22 Oct 2009 06:16:20
1 As an extension of the October trustees meeting, the Ten team enquired
2 about license usage for including firmware and binary-source material on
3 the media they were producing.
5 The items they wanted were fine, but I realize that it's a more general
6 issue, that is solved well by GLEP23.
8 I'd like to propose the addition of a new license group,
9 BINARY-REDISTRIBUTABLE, to include all licenses that are either totally
10 clear in permitting redistribution (the FSF, GPL, OSI groups) as well as
11 all licenses that are closed but contain language explicitly permitting
12 binary redistribution.
14 Anybody wishing to select packages for building packages and/or media to
15 redistribute then simply needs to pick the license group, and enable
16 USE=bindist.
18 Each license in the group must fit the following requirements:
19 - MUST permit redistribution in binary form.
20 - MUST NOT require explicit approval (No items from @EULA)
21 - MUST NOT restrict the cost of redistribution.
22 - MAY require explicit inclusion of the license with
23 the distribution [1]
24 - IFF there is an explicit inclusion requirement, USE=bindist
25 MUST cause a copy of the license to be installed in a file
26 location compliant with the license,
28 A partial initial contents:
29 ---------------------------
34 qlogic-fibre-channel-firmware
35 intel-psb
36 Intel
37 atheros-hal
38 adobe-ps
39 ipw2100-fw
40 ipw2200-fw
41 ralink-firmware
42 Adaptec
44 Footnotes:
45 ----------
46 1. On licenses that require inclusion of the license with the
47 distribution:
48 Some licenses contain language that explicitly requires that the license
49 always be present with whatever distribution of the binary content.
50 The qlogic-fibre-channel-firmware license, used for
51 sys-block/qla-fc-firmware is a good example of this.
53 Going a long way back, upstream did not permit redistribution at all,
54 which posed problems for distributing initramfs environments that
55 contained the firmware to using this hardware.
57 Simply relying on the existence of /usr/portage/ was not suitable,
58 because CD isos do not contain /usr/portage/ at all. The reasonable
59 solution at the time was installing a copy of the license to the docdir,
60 so that it would always be present (in any binpkg, as well as any
61 system/image with the package).
63 Additionally, a couple of the licenses go a step further, and contain
64 language like the following:
65 "Your rights to redistribute the Software shall be contingent upon your
66 installation of this Agreement in its entirety in the same directory as
67 the Software"
68 (From ipw2100-fw)
70 While we don't install a copy of the license for most free software to
71 save space, we SHOULD endeavour to install a copy of these more
72 restrictive licenses so that we are always in compliance with them.
73 I don't like having to install blocks of text to my / partition
74 (/lib/firmware/ for firmware), but I see no alternative if we wish to
75 distribute the software.
77 --
78 Robin Hugh Johnson
79 Gentoo Linux: Developer, Trustee & Infrastructure Lead
80 E-Mail : robbat2@g.o
81 GnuPG FP : 11AC BA4F 4778 E3F6 E4ED F38E B27B 944E 3488 4E85