[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [gNewSense-users] (Long and sort of) OT: Converting people to freeso

From: Jason Self
Subject: Re: [gNewSense-users] (Long and sort of) OT: Converting people to freesoftware (was: Songbird freedom)
Date: Mon, 08 Mar 2010 14:58:58 -0800 (PST)

Nuno Miguel dos Santos Baeta <address@hidden> wrote ..

> This solution of installing Ubuntu causes, IMO, a big problem.

But yet you still do it. :) Perhaps I'm misreading but it seems that your 
solution when a problem surfaces is to help them install a distro that includes 
and recommends non-free software, instead of finding out why their free 
software distro is not working like it should. Maybe it's a bug that should be 
reported? Maybe the bug has already been fixed upstream? Maybe a newer version 
of some package is needed? Maybe it's something else?

For example: The very first time I installed gNS on my laptop I found that my 
WiFi didn't work. After some searching I found that it required a binary blob 
to operate. Instead of using a non-free distro I quickly wently online via 
ethernet and purchased a new WiFi card that was supported by the free ath5k 
driver. After the card arrived the WiFi still didn't work because the version 
of ath5k included in the stock gNS kernel was too old to include support for my 
card. So I replaced the kernel with a newer version from linux-libre, restarted 
and -- boom -- my card then worked. And I haven't given up any freedom.  :)

So I think that troubleshooting these problems further would be useful, and if 
it turns out that the hardware needs to be replaced or simply needs newer a 
newer software version than what's in gNS, then installing /that/ is, IMO, a 
better solution than setting them up with Ubuntu (or other distro that doesn't 
repect the user's freedom.) Also, there are other free software distros at so it's possible that others many include sufficently new 
versions to work out of the box.

The hardware should only be 100% unsupportable by a free software distro if it 
requires non-free software (like a binary blob, etc.) to operate. In those 
cases it's better, IMO, to educate the user about what's going on and why it's 
better to buy hardware from manufacturers that do care about freedom (think 
Yeeloong, NanoNote, Open Graphics Project, etc.)

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]