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Dividing the Linux desktop
LWN.net Weekly Edition for June 13, 2013
A report from pgCon 2013
Little things that matter in language design
The legal constraint on using dtrace or ZFS on Linux is exactly the same as the legal constraint on using a proprietary hardware driver on Linux.
Uh, not really. DTrace is free software..
dtrace on Linux
Posted Sep 21, 2008 11:22 UTC (Sun) by Jonno (subscriber, #49613)
Morally and technically it's another matter however, as the source *is*
availible, and *can* be fixed if nessesary...
Posted Sep 22, 2008 10:58 UTC (Mon) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
With DTrace being free-software, there isn't even much of a moral hazard...
Posted Sep 22, 2008 13:57 UTC (Mon) by corbet (editor, #1)
DTrace presents a different hazard; imagine a Sun-turns-SCO scenario, for example. The fact that Sun does not appear to be interested in taking that path now is irrelevant; neither was Caldera, once upon a time.
Posted Sep 22, 2008 14:54 UTC (Mon) by paulj (subscriber, #341)
Posted Sep 22, 2008 15:42 UTC (Mon) by zooko (subscriber, #2589)
I have a feeling that you already addressed this in your "What if Sun turns Evil?" article, but I don't recall any actual problems that could result from use of DTrace or ZFS source code.
Posted Sep 22, 2008 17:33 UTC (Mon) by njs (guest, #40338)
Unless they have changed their mind and answered this at some point. I hope so -- haven't followed closely.
But paulj is right re: copyrights; Sun wrote the CDDL in such a way that combining CDDL and GPLv2 violates the GPL but not the CDDL. This has the same effect in practice as not granting permission, but it means that for copyright issues we don't need to worry about Sun-turns-SCO -- we need to worry about SCO-turns-SCO.
Posted Sep 21, 2008 12:43 UTC (Sun) by zooko (subscriber, #2589)
However, my point here was that resulting restrictions on use and redistribution are similar:
The copyright holder on DTrace has granted permission to use it in Linux systems, but the GPL which governs redistribution of Linux source code forbids redistributing derived works which include non-GPL'ed code such as DTrace.
This winds up imposing the same sort of restriction on users and distributors that a proprietary driver does: the copyright holder of the proprietary driver grants you the right to use it in your Linux kernel, but the Linux licence forbids you to redistribute it (assuming the current standard interpretation of GPL applied to this issue).
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