Subject: Re: embedded systems vs. GPL
From: "Russell Nelson" <nelson@CRYNWR.COM>
Date: Wed, 16 Jun 1993 13:00:48 EDT

On Wed, 16 Jun 93 17:44:18 +1000, "La Monte H Yarroll" <>
> >    Date:      Tue, 15 Jun 1993 23:19:43 EDT
> >    From: "Russell Nelson" <nelson@CRYNWR.COM>
> > 
> >    Has anyone put GPL'ed software into an embedded system?  How have you
> >    dealt with the source requirement?

> I'm confused.  What is the problem?  How are binaries on ROM any
> different from binaries on a floppy?  All the GPL requires is that the
> sources be _available_--you don't actually have to ship them with
> every set of ROMs.

The problem is that you want to encourage people to ship source.
With an embedded system, there may not be any way to get data
from the device.  This means that the manufacturer of the device must
ship a floppy containing the source code.

What I'm doing is letting my *customers* tell people that they can
get the source code from me.

Hmmm...  I wonder.  Maybe a new FSB (call it GPL Sources) could sell
"GPL Compliance" to people.  The GPL-code-user would include a note
in their documentation saying that source code is available from GPL
Sources. GPL Sources would indemnify the GPL-code-user against claims
that the source was not available.  It would also meet the need for
guaranteeing source code availability for three years.

-russ <> What canst *thou* say?
Crynwr Software           Crynwr Software sells packet driver support.
11 Grant St.              315-268-1925 Voice  |  LPF member - ask me about
Potsdam, NY 13676         315-268-9201 FAX    |  the harm software patents do.