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March 28, 2002
From: Keith Owens <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Exit sections and monolithic kernels Date: Fri, 22 Mar 2002 14:02:41 +1100 You say > useless "undefined reference to `local symbols in discarded section > .text.exit'" message that accompanies a failed link These messages are not useless, on the contrary they are detecting coding errors where people call functions that have not been included in the kernel. These are kernel bugs just waiting to happen. When binutils started checking for dangling references, it flushed out several coding errors. The down side is that we have to tell the kernel which dangling references to ignore, using __devexit_p.
From: Stephen.Schaefer@emis-intl.com To: email@example.com Subject: Re: [m]ore GPL confusion Date: Mon, 25 Mar 2002 23:55:32 -0500 (EST) In my understanding of the GPL, there is an important freedom one retains when using GPL software: you are under no obligation until you transfer rights in the software (``give it'') to someone else. If you obtain a copy and modify it for your own use, noone's going to track you down and require you to divulge the changes *unless and until* you provide the software to someone else. IANAL, but it seems you could go so far as to provide services using the modified GPL software, again, so long as you did not distribute the software itself to any other entity. Otherwise, there would be no need for the Affero GPL, in which such occlusion of the service is specifically prohibited. Example: suppose you take GPL scheduling software and modify it to include your cement company's trade secret algorithm for scheduling cement trucks. Are you in any way required to divulge your modifications? No. Suppose you start offering cement truck scheduling as a service to other cement companies. Unless the scheduling software was published under the Affero GPL, you can still keep your trade secret. Now suppose you wanted to sell cement truck scheduling software. It is only in this case that you would be required to choose between replacing all the GPL licensed code with differently licensed code (possibly with the same code, but licensed differently from the copyright holder), or publishing the full source and developing a service-oriented business model supporting and refining the published software. For reasons I don't understand, people cannot seem to comprehend that although Free Software advocates want universal participation, we do not, through the GPL, compel it. The GPL is a highly pragmatic compromise. The world would be unimaginably richer if information *were* free, but GPL software is no more than an invitation to a beguiling half shadow of that world. - Stephen P. Schaefer
From: =?ISO-8859-15?Q?Leandro_Guimar=E3es_Faria_Corsetti_Dutra?= <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Hurd and proprietary software Date: Thu, 21 Mar 2002 09:56:07 +0100 > We are working at clarifying things further, in an attempt to > discover (and fairly represent) what the Free Software > Foundation's objections are with regard to the existing, fully > free distributions. Stay tuned... No work needed here. The meaning of RMS' declaration is clear, and clearly documented in the FSF site, besides being clear in the history of the relation between Debian and GNU. While Debian and GNU work closely together, and at one time Debian was considered to be part of GNU, their differences is that GNU wants to be completely free, while Debian has this hair-splitting about providing proprietary software (along with free software that depends on proprietary software) as add-ons to the official, completely free standard Debian software distribution. -- _ / \ Leandro Guimar„es Faria Corsetti Dutra +41 (21) 216 15 93 \ / http://homepage.mac.com./leandrod/ fax +41 (21) 216 19 04 X http://tutoriald.sf.net./ Orange Communications CH / \ Campanha fita ASCII, contra correio HTML +41 (21) 644 23 01
From: Leon Brooks <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: Jeroen Dekkers <email@example.com> Subject: A flying Hurd Date: Sat, 23 Mar 2002 21:20:34 +0800 Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org > The following sentence doesn't make much sense to me either: "Thus, > it seems unlikely that the HURD will mount a substantial challenge > to the established free kernels anytime soon." Pretty easy to understand, really, since you already have all of the pieces of the problem: > Although the current implementation doesn't show it, the design of > the Hurd and the ideas behind it really rock. ...words 2 through 7 are your answer. When the current implementation does show it, the Hurd will have acheived airspeed. And impressive it will be, as well, there's lots of drool-over and kick-ass stuff in there. Given the time it's taken so far, the Hurd's logo really does need to be a squadron of winged pigs (it will win hearts, trust me), or perhaps the Spruce Goose, but I think most of the Hurd's team members take it too seriously to let that happen. (-: Cheers; Leon
From: email@example.com To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: abe lincoln and the digital pirates Date: Wed, 27 Mar 2002 11:39:00 -0800 Cc: email@example.com Mr Eisner: I just read your essay that was posted to the Financial Times. I feel sorry for the problems that you're having. And I respect the existance ofthe Capitalist system that we enjoy. But contrary to popular thought, Capitalists (such as yourself) should not be protected and enhanced by government intervention. Your tale of woe ignores the fact that copyrights were once of shorted duration, that they were non-renewable, that "Fair Use" was a bonafide consideration. These laws were originally written to protect individuals, not corporations. In the spirit of freedom. I believe that the government should become less involved.. And mr eisner, intellectual property rights are not synonamous with monopoly rights.. Instead of talking about the CBDTPA as a solution, let's look at a CBDTPA assault of the automobile and the freeway system. In the following analogy: 1. Any Vehicle = digital device such as a computer. 2. Roadways = networks Be it proposed that it be prohibited to build or modify any vehicle that can be used in in criminal activity. Such vehicle should not be function in the commission of any crime, or even the appearance of a crime. If necessary, the USA will fund and innovate measures to ensure that such standard can be innovated. Fair Use will not be allowed to any vehicle that is even capable of being used in a criminal manner. Gosh, Mr Eisner, with your guidance, we could interpret a crowbar in the trunk as a burglary tool, and insist that car automatically disable.. If this proves fully successful, we will extend to Political Correctness cause also.. Perhaps the government can fund a plan to identify wrong doing in advance. If your car stops suddenly, you must've been about to do something bad..... AND SO ON....... de jerry
From: "Howland, Curtis" <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: <email@example.com>, <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Seen in the March 21st Letters... Date: Wed, 27 Mar 2002 11:25:40 +0900 Dear LWN, In the March 21st letters section, David Craig considers the statement that "Yes, it's true: the U.S. government really wants to outlaw free software." to be inflammatory and beneath the journalistic standards I have come to expect from your Web site." I consider the statement, if actually written by LWN, to be rather a mild understatement. A cursory glance at the 5 Million laws on the books in America demonstrate that control over ones own life, be it in terms of labor or software, is the last thing that the various governments in the U.S. want you to have. Government is about control. Free software, as in beer or speech, endangers that control. Curt- --- Written from, not for, work.
From: "jacob navia" <email@example.com> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: zlib Date: Sat, 23 Mar 2002 22:22:24 +0100 zlib corrupts malloc data structures via double free. This vulnerability impacts all major Linux vendors. It may impact every Linux installation on Earth. Updates are required to zlib and any packages that were statically built with the zlib code Wouldn't be a good idea to modify free() so that it never frees twice? When a pointer is passed to it, free should look up if the address is a valid address, and set an error flag and do nothing if the address is incorrect. This does not mean that a huge list of addresses must be maintained, but just some range checking could greatly speed up the process. I do not think that writing a better free() is completely beyond the reach of the clib people isn't it? This would fix all of those bugs in Linux forever, without any need for patching all buggy applications, or waiting till all those bugs surface! But who develops now for security?
From: "Robert A. Knop Jr." <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: A note of praise for Seagate Date: Tue, 26 Mar 2002 18:36:36 -0600 I was having some trouble reading a DDS3 tape written with an HP drive on a Seagate Archive Python 04016 DDS3 drive. It turned out that the solution was that I needed to issue a "mt setblk 10240" command on the Seagate drive to get the blocksize it was using set for how the tape was written. However, along the way I cruised by Seagate's support site for the drive, and saw that there was a firmware upgrade available. I was prepared to be annoyed, as the firmware upgarde was a DOS archive including a program to run to patch the upgrade. (I don't run Windows or DOS at all on the machine with the tape drive.) However, poking around, I discovered that Seagate's got a diagnostic and firmware patching program available for Linux (in addition to Netware, Windows, and Solaris). Hence, I was able to upgrade my firmware (even though that wasn't the solution to the problem at hand). This utility may be found on: http://www.seagate.com/support/tape/utils/stdiag.html I don't know if there is a central information clearinghouse for how "linux frendly" various vendors are. You can find that information for scanners on the SANE page, for printers on the gimp-print page, and for other devices *sometimes* on their pages. This is the sort of information that would be nice to have, however, before making purchase decisions. -Rob Knop email@example.com