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SubjectRe: Linux GPL and binary module exception clause?

On Wed, 10 Dec 2003, Larry McVoy wrote:
>
> I see. And your argument, had it prevailed 5 years ago, would have
> invalidated the following, would it not? The following from one of the
> Microsoft lawsuits.

No it wouldn't.

Microsoft very much _has_ a binary API to their drivers, in a way that
Linux doesn't.

MS has to have that binary API exactly because they live in a binary-only
world. They've basically put that requirement on themselves by having
binary-only distributions.

So your argument doesn't fly. To Microsoft, a "driver" is just another
external entity, with documented API's, and they indeed ship their _own_
drivers that way too. And all third-party drivers do the same thing.

So there is no analogy to the Linux case. In Linux, no fixed binary API
exists, and the way normal drivers are distributed are as GPL'd source
code.

Linus
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