Re: Binary-only firmware covered by the GPL?

From: John Bradford
Date: Fri Mar 26 2004 - 04:15:08 EST

> > But think about: why can we distribute assembler only code in linux
> > kernel? It's near to binary form (objdump -d is your friend).
> It's not. The difference is that we can always insert another asm
> statement anywhere (of course changing the way the function works)
> and still have it assemble and unless we goofed up it'll still run.
> mov ax,ax for instance won't do a thing. We can insert that
> anywhere we wish without changing anything. The assembler will take
> care of any relative jumps and pointers but with a binary firmware,
> try to insert a byte into it (not CHANGE one, INSERT one), even
> if you know just insert a NOP somewhere - and see what happens.

Then why didn't the original programmer leave a patch space to allow
for such modifications? Surely that could be considered part of the
'preferred form'.

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