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  1.    #1  
    Hi all,


    Take care,


    Dell Answers Critics Demanding Streak's Source Code
    August 25, 2010 -By Mark Hachman

    Dell Answers Critics Demanding Streak's Source Code - OS, Software & Networking by ExtremeTech

    A Dell representative said via Twitter on Thursday that the computer manufacturer is "reviewing concerns" that the company has not satisfied the terms of the GPL license in releasing the source code underlying the Dell Streak.

    The Dell Streak tablet, which began shipping this month in the U.S., was first released in the United Kingdom in June.

    The problem, according to a small but vocal group of developers and enthusiasts online, is that the Streak uses code licensed under the GNU General Public License, which allows third parties to both use and modify the code, provided that the company or person publishes the object code, either as part of a shipping device, on a physical medium, or publicly available via a server.

    The problem is that the license does not define when such code must be released, although most believe that it should be provided as soon as the device that incorporates it is published.

    A user named "Smokku" described her own frustration on

    I've just spent few hours trying to build android-msm-2.6.32 Linux kernel for Dell Streak," Smokku wrote. "It turns out that it is impossible, without device specific board files. These files are in the Linux kernel source tree Dell used to build kernel for Streak and Dell is obliged under the terms of GPL, to give this source to any owner of Streak requesting it.

    Smokku urged others to sign an an online petition, which had only amassed 196 signatures at press time.

    But that was enough to gain the attention of Dell blogger Lionel Menchaca, who tweeted: "We're reviewing concerns re: the #dellstreak source code. We intend to comply with all applicable requirements. More details soon."

    Dell may be reacting to fears that it will be the latest target of a suit by the Free Software Foundation, which sued Cisco in Dec. 2008 over allegedly modifying GNU-licensed software, then refusing to publish the modified code. In May 2009, Cisco settled with the FSF. The terms included the appointment of a Free Software Director at Linksys, a subsidiary of Cisco, who would report to the FSF on a periodic basis.
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  2. #2  
    I despise companies that try to profit off the works of others without giving back. I swore off Dells a few years back - this only further reinforces my viewpoint about their shady business practices.

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