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Robe
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2004 9:29 pm    Post subject: Xfree no longer free ? Reply with quote

Just read this article on www.Slashdot.org http://developers.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=04/02/16/2030207&mode=thread&tid=106&tid=147&tid=185&tid=187
and was wondering how the Gentoo folks think about it. Personnally I can't wait for www.freedesktop.org to come out with their beta version so I can make the switch. IMHO xfree86 hasn't really changed to much in the last 2-3 years. (At least as far as the naked eye can see for speed) What do you think ?
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Spawn of Lovechild
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2004 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In a strange way this might be a blessing, with the licensing changes more people might be interested in starting to develop and using fd.o's XServer.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2004 10:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Agreed. It looks like we're stuck with Xfree86 4.3 until freedesktop.org's xserver becomes sufficiently mature, with OpenGL drivers for nvidia and ati cards.

I'm guessing that Gentoo the distributor will be OK though, since it's only a problem if you mix Xfree86 4.4 with GPL components like KDE or GNOME, so since in theory you can use Xfree86 without any GPL programs that use its libs, and Gentoo doesn't 'ship' any incompatable defaults (except maybe on live cds) Gentoo can continue to distribute it.
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charlieg
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2004 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dammit. Somebody start a bounty on fd.o - and let's all contribute $10. I think we could raise a few thousand $ that way and create several decent bounty efforts.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2004 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did a lttle more research on this. Apparently there has been a pissing contest for quite some time now which led to several people leaving www.xfree86.org . (Mostly over who had commit rights) This boiled over to the voting of disbanment which occured in December. Here is some emails to / from David http://www.mail-archive.com/devel@xfree86.org/msg04882.html . I'm kinda getting the feeling that David Dawes is a prick. And here is another article on the new license http://www.linuxcompatible.org/story26126.html
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 3:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

since gentoo is a source distro, only the users will be breaking the licenses, and most of us dont care.

however i dont think gentoo can link any GRP packages against xfree 4.4
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 5:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since i'm about to buy a powerbook lappy i was thinking, How is this gonna affect apple and its x11 project.
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ewan.paton
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 5:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

people have been calling for a rewrite or the dumping of xfree for ages, it has had a pretty slow development cycle compared to most open source projects as there wasnt much compitition hopefully freedesktop will change that.
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charlieg
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 9:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think the licensing update affects us, only people who are integrating GPL code with XFree like Mandrake. The license change (from what I can tell) simply enforces author recognition.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just because it's incompatible with GPL does not mean it's not free. That said: I, for one, welcome our new Freedesktop.org Overlords!
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 10:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

From gentoo-dev (read thread here):

Quote:
We won't be adding versions of XFree86 with the 1.1 license [1] to the
tree, so don't be surprised when 4.3.99.903 doesn't show up with the new
license.

I won't elaborate on the reasons because it's been discussed quite
thoroughly in other forums [2-8].

We are seeking solutions/alternatives for this issue, so you can sit
back, relax and let us do the dirty work.

Thanks,
Donnie

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 10:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

m0sk wrote:
From gentoo-dev (read thread here):

Quote:
We won't be adding versions of XFree86 with the 1.1 license [1] to the
tree, so don't be surprised when 4.3.99.903 doesn't show up with the new
license.

I won't elaborate on the reasons because it's been discussed quite
thoroughly in other forums [2-8].

We are seeking solutions/alternatives for this issue, so you can sit
back, relax and let us do the dirty work.

Thanks,
Donnie


After reading some of the threads at XFree86.org I'm glad to hear that. That Dawes guy was telling everybody trying to talk sense to him that they needed to change the GPL to meet his new license terms.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe this could be a good thing? It might push ATI and Nvidia to make drivers for fd.o a bit earlier?

Or maybe he'll convince GNU to change the GPL... :lol:
And everytime I hear something about David Dawes, the word 'egomaniacal' springs to mind...
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The license change happened with RC3, correct? Will RC2 make it into portage, perhaps even to become a "stable" option in the future, while the freedesktop.org people work on their replacement?
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Maybe this could be a good thing? It might push ATI and Nvidia to make drivers for fd.o a bit earlier?

Thats the first thing I thought, lets hope this will speed up adoption of the new xserver :P
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 8:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Man eats hat. The end. :roll:

Although seriously, what motivates people like David Dawes to do such stupid things? He has nothing to gain from it. He's only losing himself what little credibility he and the XFree core team had left. He'll end up a lonely and bitter guy in charge of a project that's been long-abandoned by the community.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 17, 2004 9:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

great news? maybe. i personally think, that it will take ages, till we have an nvidia, ati support in fd.o. it took nvidia forever, to do their jump to the 50 series with their xfree driver, so i guess it will take even longer for a completly new driver.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 2:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GlennM wrote:
The license change happened with RC3, correct? Will RC2 make it into portage, perhaps even to become a "stable" option in the future, while the freedesktop.org people work on their replacement?


I hear that a fork of rc2 is very likely. Maybe the sensible xfree guys will even head it. cause fd.o isn't near ready yet.

byw, does this affect xdirectfb at all. (if you only have one display, you really should check out xdirectfb, imo. it's nice)
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IvanHoe
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can someone please explain how changing this:
Quote:
The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

To the more specific:
Quote:
1. Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright notice, this list of conditions, and the following disclaimer.
2. Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution, and in the same place and form as other copyright, license and disclaimer information.
3. The end-user documentation included with the redistribution, if any, must include the following acknowledgment: "This product includes software developed by The XFree86 Project, Inc (http://www.xfree86.org/) and its contributors", in the same place and form as other third-party acknowledgments. Alternately, this acknowledgment may appear in the software itself, in the same form and location as other such third-party acknowledgments.
4. Except as contained in this notice, the name of The XFree86 Project, Inc shall not be used in advertising or otherwise to promote the sale, use or other dealings in this Software without prior written authorization from The XFree86 Project, Inc.

Means that we can't use XFree86 anymore?
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 5:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm wondering also, what does a change in terminology have to do with suddenly every distro dropping XFree? Hell with it, I'll make some unofficial ebuilds for the 4.4 series I guess. It would be great if the xserver and xlibs projects were at a point that we could replace XFree entirely, but that's not coming for a while yet. Get to 'er, until then I'll stick with what's available, even if some people have a hairy fit over some stupid wording in the license.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 7:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a question: how is this possible?

I am not sure what the previous license of xfree was (I shall assume it was GPL). What about all the people that contributed code? The GPL requires you do distribute the code with the GPL not some other license.

can someone enlighten me? did xfree have some other license scheme?
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

iamarug wrote:
I have a question: how is this possible?

I am not sure what the previous license of xfree was (I shall assume it was GPL).


It was not under GPL.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 7:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

License: X11 MSttfEULA

according to portage.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

According to my limited understanding, GPL software is not allowed to advertise or promote in any way non-GPLed software. That's one of Stallman's core tenets - that all software should be free (read GPLed) and no one should be encouraged to use (or even told about) non-GPLed software.

Presumably this is why they are so unhappy about xfree's new licensing condition - that you have to ackowledge the authors in a reasonably prominent place, which in their view amounts to promoting software that doesn't use their GPL.

I personally think the GPL should change. There should be credit where credit is due.

Edit: Sorry, AFAIK, the GPL itself doesn't ban promotion of non-GPL software, it is the GNU philosophy - so the GPL itself probably doesn't need changing. I haven't read the GPL recently though.

Or am I barking up the wrong tree? Is there another problem?


Last edited by Ian Goldby on Wed Feb 18, 2004 9:02 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 18, 2004 8:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's all great and everything, but most people don't care who wrote the code when it comes to open source. I'm guilty of this myself. If I can change it to be better, faster, or serve my purposes who cares who wrote it originally? I usually don't even look unless I need some insight/help on something, and I'n looking for a way to contact the author.
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