Re: incorrect taint of ndiswrapper

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On Oct 25, 2006, at 16:30:26, Alan Cox wrote:
Ar Mer, 2006-10-25 am 16:11 -0400, ysgrifennodd Pavel Roskin:
I don't see any legal reasons behind this restriction. A driver under GPL should be able to use any exported symbols. EXPORT_SYMBOL_GPL is a technical mechanism of enforcing GPL against non-free code, but ndiswrapper is free. The non-free NDIS drivers are not using those symbols.
The combination of GPL wrapper and the NDIS driver as a work is not
free (in fact its questionable if its even legal to ship such a
combination together).
Assume the existence of two programs, Foo and Bar (ndiswrapper and
vendor-NDIS-driver). If Foo and Bar are different licenses (GPL vs
proprietary) it is not legal to distribute them as part of a single
work unless you convince the copyright owners to relicense. It _is_
however, perfectly legal for an end user to download Foo from
www.foo.com and Bar from www.bar.com and combine the two on his
computer, whether or not that does anything useful. Since the
ndiswrapper driver was not based on any particular driver but on a
defined standard, using ndiswrapper with a proprietary NDIS driver is
just as legal as using a proprietary database server on a GPLed Linux
system. The technical issues of which ring the code runs in is
irrelevant as long as the user obtained both pieces separately and
neither is a derivative work of the other.
Besides, if the user does not distribute it then copyright law is
irrelevant.
Cheers,
Kyle Moffett
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