No evidence. And it's probably not even true :-)
Posted Oct 5, 2008 12:44 UTC (Sun) by khim
In reply to: Have you actually looked on what nVidia REALLY distributes?
Parent article: Plugging into GCC
Actually I think this blob differs slightly from what they ship in Windows driver. And I'm pretty sure even nVidia does not have Windows driver which uses this blob - but apparently they believe they can create such driver if court demands this.
Realistically I do not expect deception here: if you have driver for Windows it's much easier to introduce glue code which will take it more-or-less unmodified then it's to create Linux-native driver. Think NDISwrapper. Linux developers will NEVER accept such driver in mainline - but this is not an issue for nVidia... Thus I'm pretty sure nVidia's blob IS what they have used for Windows driver - plus few small modifications here and there. Probably not enough to qualify as derivative of Linux kernel. And since the only reliable way to know (via court) is quite expensive... nobody bothers to actually check.
Basically it all boils down the following three-step thought process:
1. It's easier to keep this blob as separate non-derivative work (then you can ship the same code for Windows and Linux and save on Q&A).
2. They are legally required to keep it in non-derivative state.
3. If it's both easier and required - then why nVidia will do it in any other way?
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