Paul Robinson writes:
> On Sat, Jun 28, 2003 at 02:57:10PM +0930, Greg 'groggy' Lehey wrote:
> > I note that most of the discussion on this topic was by people who
> > are not central to the FreeBSD project.

> That's because the people central to the project have better things to
> do with their time than look at what the actual effort is to remove
> GPL code `from the base of FreeBSD. For those of us that looked the
> answer was "not much". Sorry if you think that's a useless answer, but
> personally I found it quite revealing.

Care to submit patches?

> > As you know, few people are as zealous as you are about wanting to
> > rid the project of GPL'd code.

> That's not the issue. As far as I, and a hefty percentage of the rest
> of the user base are concerned, BSD is about choice, not political
> ideals. I should have the choice of running a completely non-GPL
> BSD. I can do that - I can run Open, but I'd much rather run FreeBSD,
> particularly when the effort is as small as we've identified it really
> is.

Actually, you have the choice to change the code. The rest is at the whim
of the developers doing the work.

> > We've said it before: provide us with a good replacement and we'll
> > consider it seriously. Go ahead. I would *really* like to see a
> > replacement for gdb, for example.

> There are at most half a dozen apps that require the retention of
> the current GPL implementation. The rest can either be rm'ed (nobody
> uses them), replaced with BSD licensed versions, or moved out to
> ports. Awk can be moved to non-GPL just by MFC'ing a change already
> in -CURRENT. The effort to do all this is relatively small. I'd do
> it, you wouldn't notice, but I don't (as you know) have any ability
> to make those changes. But why the hostility towards doing it? I
> know this has the whiff of a bikeshed about it, but to me it makes
> sense. Perhaps I'm missing something...

We are not going to remove POSIX-mandated stuff, which means we can't
just "rm" stuff.

As for the rest of it, folks have their own priorities. Speed/efficiency
is one of them, and folks tend to go for that over licensing zealotry.
If a BSD-licensed app is a drop-in replacement for a GPL one (in a
practical way), then of course folks will be interested in using it.
Until then, the GPL/BSDL issue is NOT the trump card.

> > Most people in the FreeBSD project don't see things quite like that.

> Agreed, they don't. I don't. But when a BSD can be made GPL-clean with
> the exception of a compiler and debugger, and others are already doing
> so, I don't see what the reasons are for retaining GPL code when it
> makes sense for as much of the base to be BSD, as is possible....

As an exercise, I replaced our man(1) with OpenBSD's. It fell very
short in the features that our current man has. If you want to do
something useful, you may want to fix that.

Mark Murray
iumop ap!sdn w,I idlaH
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