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From
SubjectRe: Binary Drivers
Date
Dear Linux Kernel ML,

I am writing as a Linux-only user of over 2 years to express my concern with
the recent proposal to block out closed source modules from the kernel.

While, I understand and share your sentiments over open source software and
drivers. I fear however, that trying to steamroll the industry into
developing open source drivers by banning closed source drivers is going to
have a completely different result. They will simply abandon Linux support
for some of their products altogether.

Take the high-end graphic cards that are prevalent in most of today's
home/SOHO hardware- desktops and laptops. Would I be wrong in saying that the
Linux market share in this market is no more than 5%?
These companies have already demonstrated that the support they provide is
proportional to the market share.

The open source driver development is promising but it has been mentioned
several times that the project is undermanned and the vendors are not
forthcoming with the necessary information.
My hardware as it stands today is still not working with the open-source
drivers. Perhaps this is the case of PEBCAK and not the open-source drivers
per se but with a 1-4 hour turnaround to test a new version of the r300
driver it is not a small effort on my part. Still, I'm eagerly awaiting the
day that I'll be able to use an open-source driver that is on par with the
ati one.

The bottom line is that the proposed 1st Jan 2008 dead line is unlikely to
make any corporations tremble. It is likely to be the day when I will be no
longer able to run the latest version of the kernel.

Finally, I'd like to thank you for reading my email and on your work on the
fantastic work and community that Linux is.
I hope you will take this user and others like me under consideration when
making the final decision on whether or not to include the proposed patch and
whether to undertake work on code that will prevent binary drivers from
loading.

Warmest regards,

Marek Wawrzyczny
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