Feeds

Debian components breach terms of GPLv2

You want source code with that?

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A top Debian contributor has been left "pretty disappointed" by elements of the Debian community for failing to comply with the conditions of the GNU GPLv2 license.

Daniel Baumann, who maintains the Debian Syslinux bootloader package, has said Debian components were being released only in binary form without source code - resulting in problems for Apple Macintosh users.

"I don't want to blame individual persons," Baumann said. "This is just a note of how disappointed I'm about some parts of Debian that are not complying to licenses when it comes to distributing software."

One problem concerns Debian CD - the toolkit used to build new versions of Debian for public release. Baumann found the toolkit was using an embedded binary version of Syslinux rather than taking a full version with source code from the official Debian archive. Another instance involved the Sarge release of Debian that shipped with Syslinux 2.04 in binary and Syslinux 2.11 in source.

Baumann also found that source code for some components was missing from last November's beta version of KDE 4 - although this has now been removed from the Debian Live CDs distribution list.

The problem of synchronizing source and binary versions of Debian packages affected some Apple users last week when they tried to install the first beta release of the Lenny, the latest version Debian. Some users found their keyboard freezing up as a result of the wrong binary-only version of Syslinux being included in the package. In this case the current archive version of Syslinux (3.71) did not work - while an earlier version (3.63) embedded in Debian Installer worked fine.

Baumann has acknowledged that the problem is most likely the result of the increasingly heavy workload faced by the Debian community and the growing popularity of Debian-based Linux distros.

"It appears that as good as our package checks are, we spend little to no time to check our resulting products made from these packages," Baumann said.®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
Google+ goes TITSUP. But WHO knew? How long? Anyone ... Hello ...
Wobbly Gmail, Contacts, Calendar on the other hand ...
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.