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Torvalds knifes Tridgell


spinynorman
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Just my vote, not bringing anything new, but...

 

If Tridgell had succeeded and created an open replacement for BK, it seems to me quite likely that:

a ) A large number of kernel developers would want to use it

b ) They would tell Linus 'this is what we wanted to do in the first place'

c ) They would mutiny on him and Free-BK would become the de facto standard for kernel development

d ) Larry McVoy, for his trouble, would be thrown out on his ear in the name of OSS partisanship.

 

So, does that seem fair? It constantly galls me the way some OSS zealots see anything vaguely businesslike as evil and unworthy of basic respect. If I gave you an app. that I normally sell for money (people often do this you know), free of charge for PR reasons (perhaps even an inkling of altruism?), I'd expect you to use it responsibly. Cracking it so nobody needed to buy it again would not come under that heading, whether I explicitly said so or not, if you had manners. If you want to make a 'competing product' (albeit not in the money sense), go ahead, but I'm damned if I'll help you do it.

 

Forgive the first-person narrative; I'm not Larry McVoy, but I wanted to speak from his perspective since nobody else seems willing.

Edited by Havin_it
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tridgell didn't touch the software itself...he just wanted to know what was on the wire. If you sniff surfer traffic, you'll learn all about HTTP GET requests, but you are not "reverse-engineering" Firefox, for example.

 

This is ridiculous, like M$ saying, "you can't sniff IE traffic, we own those GET requests! stop reverse engineering!"

 

If mcvoy is smart, and has good business sense, he would have already a backup business plan that is fully compatible with the OSS business model. Which I hope he is.

Edited by arthur
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Semantics. I'm concerned with ends, not means. That traffic on the wire is coming from one BK app. and going straight to another. That is its sole purpose. What is Tridgell's purpose if not to 'break' that state-of-affairs, and with it BK's unique selling-point?

 

I'm sorry, but no amount of side-stepping the issue will convince me that a protocol used by one program is fair game for intellectual property theft where the program itself is not. If Microsoft don't care so much about this, that's their affair, but McVoy clearly does. And he has every right to. Saying 'Well you should have had a backup plan for when we shafted you' just adds insult to injury.

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adriano: tridge never used the free version of BK, so he never accepted any terms related to its use.

 

Please note what I originally wrote. No-one has actually done anything _wrong_ here. Everyone had a perfect right to do everything they did. Linus has the right to maintain Linux in BK; McVoy has the right to yank the free client at any time; and tridge has the right, certainly legally and I argue morally, to sniff BK's network traffic. The only thing that was done wrong was Linus's *bad* (not *wrong*) decision in the _first_ place to trust a project as important as the Linux kernel to a proprietary product under one guy's control and rely on his generosity in maintaining a free client. That, to me, is nuts. If this hadn't happened, something else would likely have happened to prompt the free client being withdrawn, or else it would've become so useless in respect to the full suite that fewer and fewer kernel developers would have been happy using it.

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well, if McVoy really cared about his metadata on the wire, he should have encrypted it, yes?

 

McVoy has every right to pull the free client, but he has no right to get angry, nor does Linus. If he didn't hide his metadata through encryption, then Tridgell can't be blamed for looking.

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well, if McVoy really cared about his metadata on the wire, he should have encrypted it, yes?

 

McVoy has every right to pull the free client, but he has no right to get angry, nor does Linus. If he didn't hide his metadata through encryption, then Tridgell can't be blamed for looking.

 

Encryption would have caused quite a drop in speed. And thats part of the reason why they used BK over other open source ones. The open source ones didnt have the speed needed.

 

So yeah, he COULD have encrypted it, but at the same time, he would be destroying primary feature.

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even weak encryption, which wouldn't cause a very big slowdown, would make a point - "I don't want you to look at my metadata"

 

But he sends it in plaintext. It's like walking naked through a street and expecting people not to look. At least put on a layer, however insecure, right?

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Personally for me, I think Linus should have never used BK, because it just doesn't make sense to use a closed source product to maintain the biggest open source product on the planet (linux kernel).

 

It was a poor judgement call on Linus part to ignore the feelings of many developers. Best tool for the job, maybe, but it was still closed and goes against everything I would think Linus stands for.

 

He's pissed off because the desicion he made has now, bite him in the leg (like the penguin so many years ago :lol: )

 

 

http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=linux-kern...80216717070&w=2

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cybr: linus has always said he's not an open source idealist; he released Linux under the GPL purely because he felt it was the best option for that particular product, but he doesn't 'believe' in free software like RMS does and though he thinks open source produces the best code in the end, 'it takes time'. However, I agree that the problem is that Linus is not Linux and the development of Linux is not a process that is suited to being conducted under a proprietary product based on the goodwill of one guy.

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However, I agree that the problem is that Linus is not Linux and the development of Linux is not a process that is suited to being conducted under a proprietary product based on the goodwill of one guy.

 

Even though it was the best product out there for the job with no other product rivalling it?

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Guest Adriano1

"Cannot be regained" is your opinion, I think. Apart from the fact that I'd hardly like to work with someone as petty as to avoid _ever_ working on something because of some previous event long gone.

 

And the cost in missed development that BK avoided? Or put another way: Do you really think that using BK these past three years accomplished nothing? Do you think the incredible rate of kernel development is not, in part, due to using the best tool for the job?

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"Apart from the fact that I'd hardly like to work with someone as petty as to avoid _ever_ working on something because of some previous event long gone."

 

I didn't mean in this conscious sense. I meant in the sense that people naturally lose their interest and motivation in a project they choose not to work on and are less likely to be working on it five years later than they would be had they been working on it all the years in between.

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Guest Adriano1

That's exactly the sense I meant. It's the same thing as someone refusing to work using any other piece of proprietary software. It's a balance between moral principles and the final good. I'd choose the final good, in this case. It's like refusing to work as a programmer because you have to use windows or visual studio. It only shows they can't behave professionally.

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overall .. comeone its a guy, he made a bad decision (in retrospect) ...

get over it and realise linus is a great guy but not God...

 

Mandrake made a big deal about bittorrent a while ago and now its becoming contraversial.... big deal they just made the best desicion they could... no point ripping em for it...

 

 

I agree that the problem is that Linus is not Linux and the development of Linux is not a process that is suited to being conducted under a proprietary product based on the goodwill of one guy.

Absolutely... similar things have been levelled at slackware... noones forcing anyone to use/choose it or linux for that matter.

 

 

However I also agree with iphitus and adriano...

2.6 has been a quantum growing up stage for linux... the changes have been huge and obviously bitkeeper was being used....

 

So far as i can see it saved spending developer time writing bitkeeper since it already existed .. and hey we got a great boost...

 

Now its up to linus and his merry band to choose where next...

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