documenting devices that require non-free firmware on Linux

Karl Goetz karl at
Sun Mar 7 02:59:18 UTC 2010

On Sat, 6 Mar 2010 23:41:48 -0300
Felipe Sanches <juca at> wrote:

> >> =Where are the non-free firmware images made available?=
> >> (usually here we would want an url to the manufacturer's firmware
> >> download webpage)
> >
> > Should we be linking to this? It seems contrary to the guidelines
> > used for all other projects related to gnu.
> yes. I know the guidelines disallow it. But in this specific case, I
> think that it is important to have this info. Because it can help
> developers of the free alternatives since access to the non-free
> firmware is a pre-requisite for reverse engineering it. Also,
> developers might want to run the driver using the non-free firmware to
> better understand how the device works. "The only legitimate use of
> non-free software is in the development of its free replacement." was
> once said to me by Alexandre Oliva.

This is a valid point. Can the template be updated so it includes a
warning about only using it for reverse engineering (etc), and a link
to a suitable site?  (I know there is a page about this on fsf/,
but i can't find it)

Karl Goetz, (Kamping_Kaiser / VK5FOSS)
Debian contributor / gNewSense Maintainer
No, I won't join your social networking group
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