[Soekris] *BSD vs Linux

Steve Clark sclark at netwolves.com
Thu Apr 14 16:37:32 UTC 2011

On 04/14/2011 11:25 AM, Bayard Bell wrote:
> On 14 Apr 2011, at 16:05, Steve Clark wrote:
>> On 04/14/2011 10:04 AM, Marc Balmer wrote:
>>> Am 13.04.11 04:08, schrieb Ryan Whelan:
>>>> Watching the mailing list, it -seems- like BSDs are more prevalent on
>>>> the soekris platforms then Linux.  I've only ever used Linux ( a custom
>>>> Buildroot build and hand-rolled kernel ).  I am NOT trying to troll, and
>>>> I know this is a technical mailing list, but I'm really curious why
>>>> those that chose BSDs chose them?  Without being a BSD user, I'm hoping
>>>> to get some insight into what I don't know.
>>>> I really want to know the reasons for the decision, not start a flame
>>>> war- I promise
>>> Here is why _we_ use *BSD:  Because the license matters for us.  The GPL
>>> mandates to make changes public again, publish source code and such.
>>> The BSD license has no such requirments.  It usually just says keep the
>>> copright intact.  That is very liberal and useful for when we do
>>> embedded stuff.
>>> So for a start, compare the GPL and the BSD/ISC/MIT licenses, and you
>>> will spot differences.
>> I guess that attitude is ok if you always want to be a taker and never a giver.
> That doesn't strictly follow. If I, say, pay a lot of money to fund general OpenBSD development and participate in development with code put back to the distro but redistribute it with closed modifications, the "always a taker, never a giver" thing isn't true. IIRC OpenBSD has been quite plain in saying that they're receptive to such arrangements precisely because it allows for such exchange, while they consider nothing really given unless it's freely given all the way down its core, which they don't consider Linux to be (for example, in accepting binary blobs for drivers that are closed to other "open" platforms). GPL licensing takes a different view of the intellectual property issues by saying that the terms of exchange matter and that some of them be strictly enforceable, but neither side is it an argument that's reducible to the terms you suggest, which insist that the BSD license means that there is no exchange.
> I'm not taking a position either way, simply saying that there's more to this debate than can be encapsulated by such slogans.
Look I was only responding to the person that wanted to use *BSD and not have to make public enhancements, changes, etc,  he or his company
made. That to me makes it seem he/them was/were only interested in taking and not returning anything.

Stephen Clark
Sr. Software Engineer III
Phone: 813-579-3200
Fax: 813-882-0209
Email: steve.clark at netwolves.com
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