Linked by David Adams on Tue 8th Apr 2008 16:33 UTC
BSD and Darwin derivatives "I am very happy about the direction in which the Mac OS X GUI is going, although sadly many Mac users aren't interested in (or don't know about) the "lower levels" of the Macintosh Operating System. Have you ever wondered why the Terminal greets you with the words "Welcome to Darwin"? Why do BSD and Mac OS share certain bits of code? Why does Wikipedia describe Mac OS X as a graphical operating system? Today we're going to take a look at the underlying open source technology which powers your fancy Leopard OS - the hidden core set of components, named Darwin."
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RE[3]: What BSD could have been
by nevali on Tue 8th Apr 2008 20:58 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: What BSD could have been"
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I'm not sure why I'm replying to a Moulinneuf comment, but, for the benefit of everybody else reading these comments:

1a. Darwin most definitely is “real” Open Source according to the OSD (which, given that you capitalised Open Source, is obviously what you're referring to).

1b. Darwin, under the terms of the APSL 2, is released under a Free Software license (see It's not GPL-compatible, but GNU don't believe that detracts from software being classified as Free, and they most definitely know better than you or I, given they defined the term in the first place.

1c. Neither the OSI nor the FSF have any problem explaining how to find the source, share the source, copy it for personal use or make copies for a friend, make derivative work or sell it to other people because the license expressly permits those things. Are you perhaps thinking of the original APSL 1.0 or minorly-revised APSL 1.1?

2a. The source is available from

2b. Just because a version of Mac OS X has been released doesn't imply that a version of Darwin has been as well—the two are distinct products on slightly different release cycles.

3. Server OEMs may not ship FreeBSD, but plenty of hosting providers run FreeBSD. If you counted operating system usage by OEM sales, Linux wouldn't even register on most people's scales as existing, which is clearly a flawed methodology.

4. The BSD license was intended to be corporation-friendly. If any of the NetBSD, FreeBSD, or OpenBSD projects wanted to steer things differently, they could have done: they could have released their respective operating systems under the GPL if they wanted to (note that Linux and glibc, as well as numerous other pieces of GPL and LGPL code include snippets of BSD-licensed code, thanks to the non-advertising-clause BSD license being broadly compatible with many different licenses).

5. The very fact that Apple was able to release the commercial Mac OS X including portions of FreeBSD, NetBSD and CMU Mach (all of which are BSD-licensed) cements firmly the notion that the BSDs are more “commercial-friendly” (as touted). By definition, it can't possibly mean the reverse. The only thing that Apple's licensing of Darwin under the APSL indicates is that Apple didn't want to be quite as “commercial-friendly” with Darwin as the other BSD projects.

6a. Apple is “BSD”, because the operating systems they ship (the only operating systems they ship, and the operating systems people often buy their products for) are all demonstrably BSD-based, even if much of it is no longer licensed under the terms of the 3- or 4-clause BSD licenses. The code still has BSD lineage. Great big chunks of it.

6b. Apple is, by definition, a billion dollar BSD company.

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