Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 5th Oct 2006 20:49 UTC, submitted by Eugenia
Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu "Is Ubuntu an operating system? Last week at EuroOSCON, Mark Shuttleworth gave the closing keynote outlining what he believes are the major struggles faced by the open-source/free-software community. During his talk, it became clear that Ubuntu is trying to achieve a radical shift in the software world. Ubuntu isn't trying to be a platform for mass-market application software: it is trying to be the primary provider of both the operating system and all the application software that a typical user would want to run on his machine. Most Linux distributions are like this, and I think it is a dangerous trend that will stifle innovation and usability."
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Ubuntu and proprietary software
by manmist on Thu 5th Oct 2006 21:16 UTC
manmist
Member since:
2005-12-18

Note that Ubuntu ships and installs proprietary drivers by default without giving users a choice.

http://www.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/licensing

"All of the application software installed by default is Free Software. In addition, we install some hardware drivers that are available only in binary format "

This is worse than Freespire which atleast has a OSS edition.

Reply Score: 3

Stemp Member since:
2006-02-09

You want a Frubuntu ? or an Ubuntu OSS Edition ?

http://www.gnewsense.org/

Reply Parent Score: 3

da_Chicken Member since:
2006-01-01

Mark Shuttleworth plans to release an official "free software only" version of Ubuntu.

"Stallman supports the idea, but isn't happy with the name. Anyway, the name Gnubuntu will be kept, the corresponding domain gnubuntu.org is already registered - but with no content on it yet."

http://www.ubuntux.org/gnubuntu-a-completely-free-ubuntu

Reply Parent Score: 2

sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""Note that Ubuntu ships and installs proprietary drivers by default without giving users a choice."""

That is incorrect.

I have a few devices on my machines which are not supported in an OSS way, but do have binary only drivers. Ubuntu does the best it can on these devices, installing the xorg nv driver for my nvidia card, the xorg radeon driver for my ati express 200M, and the rather rickety bcm43xx driver for my notebook's wireless.

In no case has Ubuntu resorted to binary only modules on the install.

Ubuntu (and its associated community) *does* make installing the proprietary bits straightforward for the users who have considered the issues and have chosen to install them.

Can you provide some concrete examples to support your claim?

Edited 2006-10-05 21:28

Reply Parent Score: 5

manmist Member since:
2005-12-18

That is incorrect.

The statements were directly taken from the Ubuntu website under the section "software installed by default" . It has been confirmed my Mark Shuttleworth in a recent interview itself that Ubuntu installs proprietary drivers by default.

http://fasmz.org/~pterjan/blog/?date=20060609

Reply Parent Score: 5

evad Member since:
2005-09-10

http://packages.ubuntu.com/dapper/misc/linux-restricted-modules-2.6...

Here is an example package, it's got all the non-free binary drivers in it and it's in the restricted section. It's not installed by default. I promise you that by default Ubuntu does not configure nVidia cards using the "nvidia" driver.

Although Ubuntu gives you the option of non-free binary drivers it doesn't force them on you.

In your link they mention drdsl, but as you can see...

http://packages.ubuntu.com/dapper/base/drdsl

...it is in the restricted section. It doesn't get installed by default. You have to enable restricted in your sources before it'll ever get near your computer.

Reply Parent Score: 5

StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

"All of the application software installed by default is Free Software. In addition, we install some hardware drivers that are available only in binary format "

Uh.... the humanity? Won't someone think of the children?

I sure am glad that the availabity of source code has been turned into a critical moral issue - such an astounding rise in the level of discourse.

Well, I'm off to send vitriolic letters to people who have EMailed me Word .DOC attachments.

Reply Parent Score: 5

sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""I sure am glad that the availabity of source code has been turned into a critical moral issue -"""

We're not all so fanatical. Some of us stop at "strongly prefer" without jumping off of the "must be Free, or else" precipice.

Please don't judge us by our most outspoken proponents, who are no doubt well meaning, but often do more harm than good.

Reply Parent Score: 5

leon Member since:
2006-06-24

Ubuntu is a bit desperate to attract users by adopting binary drivers while the two big companies Novell and Redhat are trying their best to force companies to release open-source drivers by not including binary drivers in their products. Yes, it will benefit the end users for a short term (this is the main reason why Ubuntu is popular), but it is damaging the OSS.

Reply Parent Score: 1