Re: Bug in 1.2.13 firewall?

Arnt Gulbrandsen (agulbra@troll.no)
Mon, 17 Jun 1996 01:39:20 +0200


dennis@etinc.com (dennis)
> The idea that a commercial vendor would invest corporate resources
> in a value-added software driver and give away source so that their
> competitors could use it is simply not practical.

The key phrase here is "so that their competitors could use it". The
license need not allow that. And in the western world, licenses are
enforcable.

Sure, there are rascals. But rascals can buy that chip from Hitachi
right now and clone the ET/5025.

> ...

> Another ramification of the "source" distribution is that it becomes
> impossible to support software that has been ported by a user. We
> are commited to support the product, but if all of our users are
> running different versions of our software (even if its just
> recompiled) it damages the entire process.

That problem, too, can be solved. For example, insmod could provide
the module with an md5 or fletcher checksum of the module's object
code (which most modules would ignore). Yours could report it:

.. kernel: et5025.o Loadable Module v2.2beta1 md5 47134897153825548592347680515

IMHO it would be perfectly reasonable to support only modules whose
md5 checksum matches one released by you. I feel certain that most
linux users would agree.

Mike Kilburn would get the choice between hacking on the driver and be
on his own, or waiting for you. That's a valuable choice.

> The best one that I heard was the "let 'em put it in E-PROM". Tell me,
> why is that acceptable? You want to pay $100 shipping and handling
> every time there's an upgrade, or do you want to download from an
> ftp site? Another thoughtful quote from the peanut gallery.

Agreed. The software belongs where the cpu is.

--Arnt