Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 6th Apr 2007 13:14 UTC, submitted by detonator
OpenBSD "I, Michael Buesch, am one of the maintainers of the GPL'd Linux wireless LAN driver for the Broadcom chip (bcm43xx). The Copyright holders of bcm43xx (which includes me) want to talk to you, OpenBSD bcw developers, about possible GPL license and therefore copyright violations in your bcw driver. We believe that you might have directly copied code out of bcm43xx (licensed under GPL v2), without our explicit permission, into bcw (licensed under BSD license)." The entire thread can be found here.
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RE[4]: re
by DonQ on Fri 6th Apr 2007 16:16 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: re"
DonQ
Member since:
2005-06-29

We, GPL people, won't allow Broadcom to make better drivers for Windows and OSX.

This is the nastiest philosophical difference between BSD and GPL style licenses.


No, not at all. If Broadcom were to make GPLed drivers for Windows and OS X and share the code back, then no problems. That's how things move forwards, and how the Linux kernel works as well as it does. That's the primary concern of the developers in this - not making better drivers for Windows or OS X.

Yes and no.

From (GPL) developers standpoint I can agree - they did the dirty work, but hardware maker won't give anything back - why then allow it to use this code?

But from users standpoint this is nonsense. User wants well working hardware and that's all. In current case it's clear that GPL actually goes against the normal users, it doesn't make them any good.

Or if Broadcom propieritary drivers are good enough, then initially cited claim (we don't want Broadcom to take our code) is unreasoned, because Broadcom wouldn't want their code anyway.

Somehow seems that GPL people are afraid that their code may not be so good as they think after all...

Of course this is speculative opinion, I don't know about neither (GPL nor propieritary) drivers quality.

BTW, differently from Linux kernel development, in current case GPL does not move driver development forward.
Neither Broadcom nor OpenBSD people will give anything back to GPL team, so are there no other commercial parties, who would be interested in developing these drivers. Single developers - yes, but they would contribute back to BSDL code either.

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