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[gNewSense-users] Non-Free Firmware

From: Brian Kemp
Subject: [gNewSense-users] Non-Free Firmware
Date: Wed, 27 May 2009 15:16:37 -0400

>I have realized  BCM 4312 uses non-free firmware. Is it a good idea to
install non-free firmware while I can get the owner a wireless card with a
fully libre driver?

(I am not the official gNewSense party line)

The firmware runs on the device, not the host CPU. Generally those
devices don't spy on you or do other nefarious things but know you are
not going to be in full control of it.

I can't think of any known situations where non-free *firmware*
running on a device's CPU caused a security problem or data
compromise. I *can* think of some where non-free *drivers* running on
the *host* CPU did. (nvidia drivers had a glyph rendering bug; remote
ownership was possible.)

As a temporary measure until you can get a better piece of hardware?
Probably fine.
It's not a good permanent solution and you should replace the hardware.

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