[coreboot] Binary blobs in the source tree (was: Re: New patch to review for coreboot: e4fc528 Add the memory reference code binary for sandybridge chipsets)

Svetoslav Trochev svetoslav.trochev at gmail.com
Tue Apr 17 23:18:25 CEST 2012

Hi Everyone,

It is hot discussion and I am very new to the project so forgive me if
my clueless-nests causes more troubles, then good. I would like to
share my point of view of person who just got interest in coreboot

First, It is hobby for me at this point and I don't have any financial
interests here.
Second, I am big supporter of the FOSS, not for idealogical reasons,
but practical reasons. Never the less I believe that I understand FSF
idealogical stand on the issues. I sometimes disagree with their
actions, but I think that I know why they are doing it.
Third, I am here to help with practical implementation of FOSS, not
with defending the FOSS ideology.

So, how new person like me sees things:
I would love to see coreboot on every PC in the world. But this is not
going to happen today, and it will not happen tomorrow if we (FOSS
supporters), can't find away to work with companies that are not
believers and supporters of FOSS. I have seen this type of discussions
over and over again on many mail-lists. I hope that we can come with
good solution that benefits both sides and not some kind of compromise
that will leave bad feelings in everyone.

Here is my proposal:
1. We should have GPL version of coreboot. No binary blobs. This
version will not be useful very much at this point, but it will enable
the work needed to produce 100% free software.
2. Some companies will provide binary blobs with 'free distribution
license' that will make coreboot much more practical today and it will
allow more people to use it today. I hope that we can have those
'blobs' in coreboot. It should be very clearly to the future coreboot
users when this blobs are needed.
3. Some companies will provide binary blobs with 'restricted
distribution license'. In this case we should make it possible for
those companies to work with coreboot, but they should be responsible
for maintaining those blobs.

I hope it helps, and feel free to ignore me if I spoke out of place,
Svetoslav Trochev

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