1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking.org

Mir's GPLv3 License Is Now Raising Concerns

Ubuntu

Published on 19 June 2013 07:28 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Ubuntu
123 Comments

Taking a break from blogging about UEFI and Secure Boot, Linux kernel developer Matthew Garrett is now writing about how Canonical's choice of license for their Mir Display Server is a bit scary. It's not the GPLv3 license alone that's raising eyebrows, but the GPLv3 combined with the Ubuntu Contributor's License Agreement that is unfortunate in the mobile space.

Basically, Matthew explains how Canonical is trying to push Ubuntu (in the form of Ubuntu Phone/Touch) into markets generally hostile towards the GPLv3 licensem since the license requires users be able to replace the GPLv3 code. Android and other open-source mobile platforms tend to be under a more liberal license that keeps open-source enthusiasts happy along with mobile phone vendors.

With Canonical being the sole copyright holder to Mir (and other key components), due to contributors signing the CLA, they are able to exclusively relicense the code-base to their hardware partners and meet their needs. However, this isn't exactly good for free software advocates.

Matthew concludes in his Canonical CLA blog post, "If Canonical were releasing software under GPLv3 because of a commitment to free software then that would be an amazing thing. But it's pretty much impossible to square the CLA's requirement that contributors grant Canonical the right to ship under a proprietary license with a commitment to free software. Instead you end up with a situation that looks awfully like Canonical wanting to squash competition by making it impossible for anyone else to sell modified versions of Canonical's software in the same market. Canonical aren't doing anything illegal or immoral here. They're free to run their projects in any way they choose. But retaining the right to produce proprietary versions of external contributions without granting equivalent reciprocal rights isn't consistent with caring about free software or contributing to the wider Linux community, especially if it means you get to exclude those external contributors from the market you're selling their code into."

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
Latest Articles & Reviews
  1. Kubuntu 15.04 Is Turning Out Quite Nice, Good Way To Try Out The Latest KDE
  2. 5-Way Linux Distribution Comparison On The Core i3 NUC
  3. OCZ ARC 100 Linux SSD Benchmarks
  4. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Works Great As A Linux Ultrabook
  5. Transcend SSD370 256GB
  6. Linux 3.19 File-System Tests Of EXT4, Btrfs, XFS & F2FS
Latest Linux News
  1. ALSA 1.0.29 Released
  2. Ubuntu 15.04 Beta Released, Ubuntu MATE Made Official
  3. Coreboot Developer: Purism Doesn't Deliver On Libre Firmware
  4. LLVM 3.6 & Clang 3.6 Deliver More Features, Complete C++14 Support
  5. The Most Popular Open-Source Linux Benchmarks
  6. The Tremendous Features Of Fedora 22
  7. Krita 2.9 Released, Their Biggest Release Ever
  8. RISC OS Now Works With The Raspberry Pi 2
  9. A Single UEFI Executable With The Linux Kernel, Initrd & Command Line
  10. Unigine 2.0 Beta Brings Performance Optimizations, Oculus Rift DK2 Support
Most Viewed News This Week
  1. Linux 4.0-RC1 Tagged, Linux 4.0 Will Bring Many Notable Improvements
  2. Screenshots Of The GNOME 3.16 Changes
  3. Linux 4.0 Doesn't Have The Weirdest Codename
  4. Mir Now Depends Upon C++14
  5. GNOME 3.16 Beta Brings Wayland-Based Log-in Screen
  6. LLVM Clang Compiling The Linux Kernel Is A Big Topic For 2015
  7. Linux BIOS/UEFI Updating Is Going To Get Much Better With UEFI 2.5
  8. Canonical Comes Up With Its Own FUSE Filesystem For Linux Containers
%%CLICK_URL_UNESC%%