Re: Bug in 1.2.13 firewall?

Dennis (dennis@etinc.com)
Sun, 16 Jun 1996 21:16:12 -0400


>> >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. Perhaps for a bare
>> bones or highly board-specific driver...but most of the "value-added"
>> features that make our product attractive are portable to other products.
>
>PPP and Cisco HDLC is pretty much bare bone. No great secrets, plenty
>of source around. Only your frame relay code is not ( that I know of ) but
>thats going to change in 97.

So $1,000,000. later, you might have a point. But for now, what exactly is
your point?

You'll get bare-bones frame, but not a quality commercial-type
implementation. We'll always be 2 years ahead, which IS significant.

>
>> So what you're saying is that you only want raw board drivers, and you
>> guys want to write the frame relay and do all the value-added stuff
>
>Some of your frame relay features are not freely avail. right now so I
>understand why you want to protect them. The fact that you chose to increase
>your profit margin by using the PC cpu and ram for these features is why
>you cant make your drivers free and protect your code at the same time. If
>your products were cheap as a result then I suppose it would be worth it but
>that does not appear to be so.
>
>You can make your software free and still make money. If you have good
>hardware and support people will buy from you.

Im not going to try and explain it to you...because clearly you just dont
get it.

>
>> America thrives on competition (and I recognize that you're not from here),
>
>I am Amercian. Dont let my african email addresses fool you. Yes, competition
>will show that free sofware is profitable.

not profitable enough.

>
>> and there isn't enough difference between decent hardware to get
>> people to buy your product without a price war. If we made source available,
>
>The difference is quality, support, service and people.
>
>> the first thing that would happen is that someone would port
>> the features to a less expensive board. So then we have to drop our
>> prices (which you THINK is a good thing), cut back on support and then
>> we stop doing new development for LINUX and start concentrating
>> on NT or something where we can make better margins. The effect
>> is that the LINUX community loses.
>>
>No. You lose. What are your NT sales relative to Linux. What you describe
>simply wont happen in the general case (maybe for you). For example: good
>software for basic routers has long been freely avail. and there are plenty
>of companies making a good living selling basic routers. The low end Ciscos
>are still making plenty of money. By your logic this is not possible because
>that software is freely avail. and good hardware to run it on also is.
>If the only thing that keeps you in profit is a frame relay module then
>I suspect your going to run into some problems next year because there
>will be free frame relay for Linux in 97.

Case and point. We sell twice as many LINUX boards as FreeBSD, but our
FreeBSD profits are higher. Why. Because people who use linux are cheap,
and buy the least expensive boards and are on the low end. The freebsd
people buy higher end boards and more of them.

As for frame relay, There's 100 routers with frame relay capability, and a
handful of them
are any good. If you have a 56k link maybe it doesnt matter much, but you
still need a
board. If you're not willing to pay an extra 100 bucks for a commercially
supported product,
then you're a fool.

>
>> 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.
>
>Intel has this stuff called FLASH. You might want to look into it :).

Perhaps you want your protocol engine to run on a Z80 or some other
slow on-board processor, but we dont. Theres nothing to gain by
putting code on the board in modern times.

>
>I belive one can make a profit and develop free software. Simple as that.
>For me thats what this thread has come down to. You dont belive in free
>software and I do.

I agree with you. But one can make more by not giving it away. Thats what
business is all about. The best frame and X.25 implementations have never
been available for free, and they (perhaps) never will be.

Dennis
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Emerging Technologies, Inc. http://www.etinc.com

Synchronous Communications Cards and Routers For
Discriminating Tastes. 56k to T1 and beyond. Frame
Relay, PPP, HDLC, and X.25 for BSD/OS, FreeBSD
and LINUX