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DJB Releases All Source to Public Domain 330

Posted by Zonk
from the play-freebird dept.
A Sage Developer writes "During a recent conference, Sage Days 6, Dan Bernstein (who has recently come under attack for his licensing policy) was among the invited speakers. During a panel discussion on the future of open source mathematics software, Bernstein declared that all of his past and future code would be released to the public domain. This includes qmail, primegen, and a number of other projects. Given the headache that incompatibility between GPLv3 and GPLv2 is causing developers, will we see more of this?"
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DJB Releases All Source to Public Domain

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  • In a word... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by s4m7 (519684) on Friday November 30, 2007 @03:14AM (#21529405) Homepage

    Given the headache that incompatibility between GPLv3 and GPLv2 is causing developers, will we see more of this?

    No.

    Not in a manner disproportionate to what we've seen in the past anyway. Some people will keep gpl2 as their license, others will go gpl3, bsd, or one of any of the OSI licenses for the most part, because people like attribution, they like retaining (some) control of their work.

    • Re:In a word... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by BiggerIsBetter (682164) on Friday November 30, 2007 @03:28AM (#21529489)
      I agree. Public Domain licensing seems to be the worst of all worlds to me.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        I can't say that Public Domain is the worst way to release, but it is less than adequate for the purposes of Free Software. However, it would allow code to be quickly absorbed into projects and extended and released under the GPL. At that point, it would remain useful and also be safe (i.e., status: to remain free).
        • Re:In a word... (Score:4, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 30, 2007 @06:22AM (#21530305)
          Well, Public Domain is a heck of a lot better than DJB's original license. For DJB's code, Public domain is a completely unqualified improvement.

          (DJB's license forbade distribution of modified source - you can only distribute patches. You man not distribute binary files that result from any modification from the distribution source. I argue that it isn't open source at all.)

          This might mean that qmail's glaring deficienies will get fixed. That's if qmail is still relevant. Plus, it might be secure on muliti-gigabyte ram 64 bit machines (which, frankly, are run of the mill linux boxes these days.)

          Now, arguing a swap from GPL or BSD to/from Public Domain is another thing entirely IMHO.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by drsmithy (35869)

            (DJB's license forbade distribution of modified source - you can only distribute patches. You man not distribute binary files that result from any modification from the distribution source. I argue that it isn't open source at all.)

            This is like arguing RHEL isn't open source because it isn't packaged up in ready to use ISOs.

      • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

        by gmack (197796)
        Qmail hasn't been maintained in years and is essentially abandoned at this point. Public domain just makes that official so it's not as if the author needs to care what happens with the code.

        I'll be curious to see whether someone manages to rekindle interest in it. The news might be good for people stuck with a large qmail setup they can't change easily but I'm guessing most new projects would be on postfix.
      • Public Domain licensing seems to be the worst of all worlds to me.

        By definition, something in the public domain doesn't require any licence because it's been released from copyright.

        That aside, I don't see how it can possibly be a bad thing if someone is kind enough to release their useful work to everyone without restriction. If you want to use it in your own work, whether it is commercial, OSS, public domain or otherwise, you can do so. No-one else can take that away from you, regardless of anything they may themselves do with the work and any licensing conditions t

      • by drsmithy (35869)

        I agree. Public Domain licensing seems to be the worst of all worlds to me.

        Code in the Public Domain is the only code that can, without question, be called "free".

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by KevMar (471257)
      I like the sound of public domain. Its simple with out any complicated rules.

      I saw Open Source as a free exchange of ideas and code that let you do what ever you wanted with it. Public Domain fits that better than a lot of others.

      All the Gotchas and legal overhead built into some of them are just overhead that make the whole process fustrating.

      At the same time, Open Source is becomming more of a buzz word than anything else. I hear even Microsoft does Open Source software now.
      • Re:In a word... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by civilizedINTENSITY (45686) on Friday November 30, 2007 @04:20AM (#21529755)
        Agreed that Public Domain is not incompatible with Open Source. In fact, it isn't incompatible, in terms of absorbing the code into a project, with the GPL. However, in terms of Free Software, Free doesn't mean "a free exchange of ideas and code that let you do what ever you wanted with it", but rather a limit on distribution rights for the purpose of ensuring that user rights always remain free. And it seems to work :-)
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Goaway (82658)
          And you know, some of us are far more interested in "a free exchange of ideas and code that let you do what ever you wanted with it" than in some convulted ideology where "freedom" is redefined as something restrictive.
          • Re:In a word... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Hatta (162192) on Friday November 30, 2007 @11:14AM (#21532657) Journal
            The only restriction the GPL imposes is that you can't restrict the freedoms of the user. It's like a double negative, restricting restrictions makes it more free.

            You may call this a convoluted ideology, but the fact is if I receive a program with GPL code in it, I'm free to modify it as I see fit. If I receive a program with public domain code in it, I may not be able to modify it at all.

            I'm interested in a free exchange of code that lets me do whatever I want with it. Public domain does not do that for me.
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by iabervon (1971)
              If you receive a program with public domain code in it, you can do what you want with it. It's when you receive a binary derived from public domain code that you may be out of luck.

              Of course, it doesn't matter to you whether some source code is public domain or GPL; if you only acquire GPL binaries (whether they're derived from public domain code or not), you can do what you want with them, while if you acquire non-GPL binaries (whether they're derived from public domain code or not), you may not be able to
            • Not quite so fast (Score:4, Interesting)

              by einhverfr (238914) <chris.traversNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday November 30, 2007 @02:14PM (#21535361) Homepage Journal

              I'm interested in a free exchange of code that lets me do whatever I want with it. Public domain does not do that for me.
              What can't you do with public domain code?

              My concern about the GPL is that, while it is very friendly towards businesses who want to release and then control the direction of their open source products (I did not say projects), it can have a stifling effect on community. Compare for example, the MySQL development model (one company *controls* what goes into the next release) with the PostgreSQL development model. In many ways Linux is an exception rather than a rule, and even GNU suffers from politics of internal control (for example RMS dismissing the head HURD architect, Thomas BUshnell, for arguing against considering the GFDL to be "Free" according to Debian's guidelines-- if this is the free speech to be associated with the FSF's free software, I want no part of the FSF).

              The GPL is in many ways a sort of halfway house for companies who want to do open source but not community-centered development. If MySQL was under the BSD license, there is no way they could maintain the central control-- they would have to open up the commit access to many people in other companies, and could not sell proprietary licenses because there would be no market for them.

              The GPL, while having legitimate uses, is more of a political statement than anything else. I say this as someone who contributes thousands of lines of code per week into GPL'd projects.

              THe GPL v3 is confusing in number of ways. For example, there is some concern over whether a company cedes patent rights over their own patents by merely using GPLv3 software, this is because of missing one little definition buried not in the definitions section but elsewhere in the license (section 11. paragraph 6, as much as a quick reading might otherwise support the concern, only applies to distribution relying on *explicit* patent licenses hence one cannot inadvertently license patents by mere distribution of the software).

              A larger issue with the GPL v3 is that section 7 can be read to be incompatible with licenses such as the BSD and MIT licenses, perhaps even with the public domain. The question is, whether paragraph 2 (removal of additional permissions) must apply to portions under other licenses as well. A plain reading of the license suggests that this is the case (and my conversations with Eben Moglen suggest he thinks that this is the case, and furthermore that he believes that licenses such as the BSD and MIT licenses allow for additional restrictions to be added to the license when merely copying the software. It is clear from public speeches that this is also the view of RMS).

              However, as another member of the SFLC pointed out to me, this was not the intent of a large number of authors of the license, and that few if any lawyers are willing to give advice that changing the license on a verbatim copy of a permissively licensed work is allowed (see the SFLC's memo on ISCL/GPL collaboration). They argue that since compatibility with licenses like the BSD license was a goal, that it needs to be read as compatible. Hence they argue that the additional things you can do with BSD-licensed code fall outside of the definition in section 7 of additional terms and are not governed by the GPL v3 at all.

              However, if and until we see a memo from the SFLC on that topic, we will not have a neutral document to point to and say "this is what the license means." Hence it seems to me that every project ought to contemplate these issues, seek legal advice, and include some clarifying statements in the project's documentation.

              This is too much trouble for me to go to in my projects so there is no incentive to move. I *am* considering moving a fair bit of my company's projects from the GPL to some variant of the MIT or ISC license however.
        • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

          by rsidd (6328)

          However, in terms of Free Software, Free doesn't mean "a free exchange of ideas and code that let you do what ever you wanted with it", but rather a limit on distribution rights for the purpose of ensuring that user rights always remain free.

          You can define things as you like, as Humpty Dumpty did, but the idea of "Free Software" was invented by Richard Stallman and is mainly used by his Free Software Foundation, and most people would accept their view [gnu.org]. (Search that page for "public domain"; the BSD and

          • by Nicolay77 (258497)
            Except for the fact that before RMS 'trademarked' the terms "Free Software" people were already sharing source code as the GP describes.

            You can't take what the gnu page says as authoritative in software history in general, they can only be authoritative about their own licences and bias.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by fbjon (692006)
        Public Domain is good for shorter snippets that one might throw away one a forum or the like, but something of a more project-y character is probably better off with a license of some sort. The exact boundary is, of course, up to personal preference.
        • I'd extend that to say Public Domain is great for small components in a bigger system, as an alternative to lgpl. Look at sqlite for example. Great piece of code that gets used to make lots of software better because anyone can just embed it without running it by a crack legal team to bicker over some linking-vs-external-api-on-binaries or whatever debate.
        • Re:In a word... (Score:4, Informative)

          by Zeinfeld (263942) on Friday November 30, 2007 @09:28AM (#21531365) Homepage
          Public Domain is good for shorter snippets that one might throw away one a forum or the like, but something of a more project-y character is probably better off with a license of some sort. The exact boundary is, of course, up to personal preference.

          We deliberately put the source codes for the original Web browser and client library into the public domain in order to create the maximum chance of growth.

          At the time there was no Apache license and the GPL poison pill simply did not meet our needs. At the time we were actively lobbying Microsoft and IBM to come on board with the Web.

          The only regret I have about it is that if we had had a license it would not have been possible for NCSA to put out the early releases of Mosaic which consisted of 75% or more of CERN code without a single mention of CERN or even the Web in the documentation. I would probably recommend that people think about the attribution issue carefully, the behavior of NCSA is the main reason that the Web received very shabby treatment from CERN, in the early days NCSA was getting all the press attention and they simply were not mentioning the fact that the ideas had come from Tim.

          I don't think this applies in Bernstein's case. Nor would I be too concerned about possibly insecure extensions. There are some open source projects that have successfully maintained a very strict security process over ten years or more.

      • I like the sound of public domain. Its simple with out any complicated rules.

        I saw Open Source as a free exchange of ideas and code that let you do what ever you wanted with it. Public Domain fits that better than a lot of others.

        All the Gotchas and legal overhead built into some of them are just overhead that make the whole process fustrating.

        Ah, but many people writing GPL licensed software have an agenda. Why do you think IBM works on GPL licensed and not BSD licensed software? Because IBM is not interes

      • by orasio (188021)

        I like the sound of public domain. Its simple with out any complicated rules.

        I saw Open Source as a free exchange of ideas and code that let you do what ever you wanted with it. Public Domain fits that better than a lot of others.

        All the Gotchas and legal overhead built into some of them are just overhead that make the whole process fustrating.

        At the same time, Open Source is becomming more of a buzz word than anything else. I hear even Microsoft does Open Source software now.

        Your vision on OS was wrong. Open Source is a buzz word, from the beggining.

        Then, there is free software. Legal overhead is not overhead, regarding free software. Free software is a legal issue, not a technical one. There is no process, if you don't care about the legal ramifications. If you don't want to deal with legal stuff, or at least learn one concrete thing (the four freedoms of free software), then free software is not for you.

        Public domain is great for all that people who like to take, and give no

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by nuzak (959558)
          Yeah, look at how sqlite has languished by being public domain. No sooner was it released than it was snapped up and closed off and now no one can download the free version anymore.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by orasio (188021)

            Yeah, look at how sqlite has languished by being public domain. No sooner was it released than it was snapped up and closed off and now no one can download the free version anymore.

            I am talking about all instances of the software. Of course we can still get sqlite, but most of sqlite users don't know they are using it, and they don't know they can get the actual code to fix an issue. The idea of the GPL is protecting those users. Public domain doesn't help end users, because they don't even need to know what they are using.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Russ Nelson (33911)

        Open Source is becomming more of a buzz word than anything else. I hear even Microsoft does Open Source software now.


        Yes; just like everybody else who's publishing Open Source Software, they're doing it using an OSI Approved Open Source License.
    • by cduffy (652)
      I disagree -- look at sqlite [sqlite.org]. It's a wildly successful project, and the authors offer consulting services for folks who want help making customizations (say, integrating it into their commercial projects).

      As for me, I'm thrilled about DJB making this change, because it means I can actually use his software! (Something with no license to redistribute is effectively worthless to me -- if I can't even make copies within my own LAN, but need to download every copy separately from DJB, that's far too much hassle
    • Some people will keep gpl2 as their license, others will go gpl3, bsd, or one of any of the OSI licenses for the most part, because people like attribution, they like retaining (some) control of their work.

      Exactly. And the headache is in the troller's imagination. It's like imagining that one gets a headache every morning because there are 75 brands of cereal you can buy. Stupid FUDding summary. People (including djb) use the license they want to use, no more, no less.

  • OK so when exactly? (Score:3, Informative)

    by MichaelSmith (789609) on Friday November 30, 2007 @03:14AM (#21529407) Homepage Journal
    The reason I ask is that I read some releasing a new version of netqmail with smtp auth patches in it, and this is really waiting on DJB to do something about this issue. My servers are currently taking a big hit from spam and a clean way to block it in smtpd would make life a lot easier for me.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Just wanted to get that in there.
  • That may be good. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by www.sorehands.com (142825) on Friday November 30, 2007 @03:18AM (#21529437) Homepage
    I like qmail. This is both good and bad.

    The good is that allows people to fix, and distribute the fixes as part of the package instead of as a bunch of patches.

    The bad is the security of the result. One of the hallmarks of the DJB software is that it is secure and he backs it up with a $500 (it may be $1000 now) bounty for security holes in the software. Many people referred to him as arrogant because of his refusal, but when you are good, you sometimes develop an attitude that people mistake for arrogance. Even so, it is HIS code, so he gets to do what he wants with it.
     
    • by JoshJ (1009085)
      If it's public domain, it's not really "HIS" code anymore.
    • The bad is the security of the result.

      Nothing anyone does with fixing or distributing fixes as a package will make the vanilla version from cr.yp.to any less secure.

      One of the hallmarks of the DJB software is that it is secure and he backs it up with a $500 (it may be $1000 now) bounty for security holes in the software.

      Which he's also refused to pay in a few notable cases where most people tend to agree it was deserved.

      Don't quote me on that, though...

      • by pipatron (966506)

        Don't quote me on that, though...

        Don't worry, without sources to back it up, no one will.

        • I was kind of hoping someone would hunt down the sources to back it up or disprove it, so I don't have to.

          It's 3 AM. Before 3, I check sources. After 3, I just ramble lamely.
    • Re:That may be good. (Score:4, Interesting)

      by arivanov (12034) on Friday November 30, 2007 @03:36AM (#21529551) Homepage
      Actually, if you like qmail you need to have your brain checked.

      The biggest advantage of Unix is the "We stood on the shoulders of Giants" philosophy. The library functions are continually improved and nowdays there is a library function for nearly everything. Qmail goes completely against this philosophy by rewriting nearly every higher level function in libc it needs. Granted, when qmail came out some of these rewrites were more secure and technically superior implementations. First of all, not contributing them towards the libc's is sociopathic behaviour (I want only my app to benefit, everyone else go suck bricks sidewise through a thin straw). Second, their technical superiority even from a security perspective is no longer there. Libc has moved on and even the worst of them (HPUX and Irix) are now at the same level of the DJB replacements (or better).
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        I suppose then that now there is nothing to stop developers from implementing a fork of qmail that will use libc (and indeed, to absorb into libc anything worthy from qmail). So the race is on! Will gqmail or kqmail be the first to distribute said fork?
        • Re:That may be good. (Score:5, Interesting)

          by arivanov (12034) on Friday November 30, 2007 @04:42AM (#21529853) Homepage
          No point. The MTAs have moved forward as well. The libraries have moved forward as well. It would have been interesting 10 years ago (I used it and advocated its use at that time).

          Now it is pointless.

          Postfix, Exim and even sendmail have made a giant leap forward in terms of code quality, performance and security. So have the underlying libraries.

          There simply no point to use qmail or any of its code base now. Too little, too late.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Asmodai (13932)
          I cannot for the life of me imagine why anyone would want to use qmail.

          From a system administrator's point of view qmail does NOT keep adequate logging to track the flow of a message through X MTAs. With Postfix or Sendmail (and I reckon Exim too), I can see the entire flow in the logs. If you ever worked for a company such as an ISP or where someone complained about email gone missing, stuff like this is lifesaving.

          From a programmer point of view DJB's software is just the antithesis of everything decent p
          • by ajs318 (655362)
            I can imagine qmail, if it still has that brain-dead insistence on a \r before every \n, would be good in an all-Microsoft shop.

            But I'm biased. I've used exim since whatever version shipped with Debian Potato.
      • by FishWithAHammer (957772) on Friday November 30, 2007 @04:47AM (#21529871)
        First of all, not contributing them towards the libc's is sociopathic behaviour (I want only my app to benefit, everyone else go suck bricks sidewise through a thin straw).

        This is ludicrous. He wrote them because the ones out there weren't good enough. Others can write their own. There is nothing sociopathic about closed source software, no matter how much you may wish it to be.

        (It is probably in the realm of sociopathy, as we're using the term, to go after people who reverse engineer your compiled binaries, but that's entirely different from not giving them your code. If they can extract what they need from what you have chosen given them, good for them. It is always wise to remember that while the GPL and the Free Software movement are in favor of unlimited user rights, a developer choosing to exert his own rights is not wrong.)
        • by ajs318 (655362)

          There is nothing sociopathic about closed source software

          Closed Source software fits the very definition of sociopathy.

          As a user of software, I have certain rights which exist precisely because software exists. I have a right to enjoy the use of that software; a right to study the operation of that software; a right to share that software with my neighbour; and a right to adapt that software to my own specific requirements. I also have the right to delegate the exercise of any of these rights to a pers

      • by slim (1652)

        Actually, if you like qmail you need to have your brain checked.

        The biggest advantage of Unix is the "We stood on the shoulders of Giants" philosophy. The library functions are continually improved and nowdays there is a library function for nearly everything.

        Actually that's the biggest advantage of free Unix and Unix clones.

        Qmail goes completely against this philosophy by rewriting nearly every higher level function in libc it needs. Granted, when qmail came out some of these rewrites were more secure and technically superior implementations. First of all, not contributing them towards the libc's is sociopathic behaviour

        Qmail stems from a time when serious UNIXen were commercial and closed. Getting the libc source cost big money; fixes were not solicited.

        They were dark times. Feel glad RMS fought for you.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by vidarh (309115)

          Qmail stems from a time when serious UNIXen were commercial and closed. Getting the libc source cost big money; fixes were not solicited.

          When Qmail was release, glibc was more than a decade old. So though glibc might not have been as widely used as those of commercial Unix versions there were certainly plenty of opportunity to release it.

          That said, most of the stuff he reimplemented is not stuff that belongs in libc, and quite a bit of it is pointless paranoia and just contributes to make the Qmail source hard to read.

      • by sfraggle (212671)
        It's not part of the C standard, so it's not portable. No matter how many C libraries you get those functions added to, there will always be more. Have you ever actually written and maintained a large, portable C program? I'd say that probably every mail program in existence, indeed, every large C program in existence, does exactly the same thing. It's simply not practical to wage some boil-the-ocean campaign to get your pet library functions added to every libc implementation on the planet.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by TheRaven64 (641858)
          This is why OpenSSH has an OpenBSD and a portable branch. Every feature they find lacking a C library gets merged into OpenBSD's libc (and quickly makes it to other BSD libcs) and gets stuck in the portability library which implements these functions in a portable manner. Other libc maintainers can take the code from the portable library, since it's BSD licensed, and everyone benefits. Failing that, people can compile OpenSSH with the in-tree copies of the functions.
  • the headache that incompatibility between GPLv3 and GPLv2 is causing developers

    Oh, and I thought it is because of excessive drinking! Now I know: blame FSF!

  • by Tuqui (96668) on Friday November 30, 2007 @03:38AM (#21529561) Homepage
    I really like DJB approach in many programs but his daemon as services makes his good programs difficult to use.
    I would like to use dnscache as a normal daemon, one below the /etc/init.d , that will be cool.
    • Well, this is good for you, because you can now write a script for /etc/init.d which wraps around svc. Well, you could do that anyway, but someone else can now do that and package Qmail with it.

      Understand that he was trying to replace /etc/init.d with something slightly more standard and user-friendly. This is an admirable goal -- I'm not sure I agree with /service, but I do think, in particular, /etc/rc*.d needs to go, and maybe /etc/init.d with it.
      • by deniable (76198)

        more standard and user-friendly

        Brilliant, you almost got me there. DJB's approach to standards is to write his own incompatible version. As for user friendly, he can't even put the man pages where they can be found.

        Other than not watching for dead processes, what exactly is the problem with /etc/init.d? Certainly, the collections of links in /etc/rc.d can be a handful, but if these are giving you grief, why aren't you running a BSD startup?

        • by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Friday November 30, 2007 @04:50AM (#21529885) Journal

          DJB's approach to standards is to write his own incompatible version.

          Right, since there isn't a standard right now...

          As for user friendly, he can't even put the man pages where they can be found.

          That's why I called it "trying".

          Other than not watching for dead processes, what exactly is the problem with /etc/init.d?

          Well, init.d is complete in the sense that brainfuck is Turing-complete.

          Which is to say, it's actually awkward for quite a lot of things. For instance: networking.

          On Gentoo, the way multiple network interfaces are dealt with is by assigning each of them an init script, all symlinked to the same one. Gentoo init scripts have dependencies, so I can have something depend on some or all of the network interfaces being up.

          On Debian, this is dealt with by having one "networking" init script that then ties into its own init-like system for individual interfaces -- ifup/ifdown. I can force certain scripts to run after an interface comes up or goes down.

          On Ubuntu desktops, this is dealt with by having a NetworkManager daemon (started by init.d) that handles everything itself, by communicating with a GUI. I'm fairly sure it uses ifup/ifdown in some way, as it seems to respect some of my static scripts.

          Gentoo is the closest to the "right way", in that there's a unified way to start/stop something. That is, on Gentoo, I know I can stop a network device by doing /etc/init.d/net.eth1 stop. But Ubuntu's the most user-friendly way, because I can do it from a GUI, and, for instance, easily migrate between wireless networks.

          Now, go read about upstart [ubuntu.com], for a completely different approach. In particular, the ability to receive "events" from, say, udev or HAL, means that the equivalent of "/etc/init.d/net.eth1 start" will be run when I plug a cable into eth1, without removing that functionality, or forcing it into a completely different system (ifup/down).

          At least, that's how I think it would work. In practice, while Upstart is used in Ubuntu, it's mostly used just to launch all the old sysv rc scripts, which then launch things like NetworkManager.

          • by jibjibjib (889679)
            On my system networking is done by deleting the mess of scripts that came with the distro and writing a simple script with a few ifconfig and iwconfig commands.

            on Gentoo, I know I can stop a network device by doing /etc/init.d/net.eth1 stop.
            What's wrong with "ifconfig eth1 down"? That works on every distro.
          • Gentoo will auto-run network init scripts when the network device appears. Stick your WiFi USB dongle in and Gentoo will automatically bring it up, as long as you have the init script configured.

            I'm not sure about plugging in the cable (media detection instead of device detection), but I'd bet it's also implemented in some way.
      • by IkeTo (27776)
        > Well, you could do that anyway, but someone else can now do that and package Qmail with it.

        Yes, that "someone else" will be all distributors like Debian, Fedora, etc. There's no point asking all users to learn svc when they already have to know inittab, init.d and inetd.

        djb really should have allowed that long long ago. What's the point complaining "every distribution has their own way to starting deamons" when each distribution happily support their users by writing the required code and have forums
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          By the way, I don't see /etc/rc*.d to be going away anytime soon. If you think there is any important features missing from it, the best way to go is probably to file a wishlist bug in the bug tracking systems of the distributors.

          It's being worked on. [ubuntu.com]

    • by deniable (76198)
      daemontools is not too bad once you know it's on the box. Documentation helps too.

      Don't be surprised if there are variants with all of the normal /etc/init.d mechanisms soon.
  • by jd (1658) <imipak @ y a h o o .com> on Friday November 30, 2007 @03:41AM (#21529577) Homepage Journal
    The crypto software and FFT software especially so, but maintenance isn't always as hot. That's hardly DJB's fault - they are public domain and nobody has run with them. On the other hand, it is not acceptable that his software is not being properly distributed, promoted or documented. Nor is it acceptable that he allows his personality quirks to interfere with the primary purpose of getting code into active circulation.
  • Late to the party (Score:2, Flamebait)

    by Neo-Rio-101 (700494)
    DJB is so late to this party. Releasing his code about 5 years ago would have been more useful to the rest of us. Myself, like many other people, threw the towel in on using his tools seriously a long time ago. At least endless qmail patching isn't needed anymore for those devoted to that MTA.
  • Given the headache that incompatibility between GPLv3 and GPLv2 is causing developers, will we see more of this?
    What headache would that be? The GPL2 has a phrase "or (at your option) any later version." which makes it trivially compatible with GPL3.
  • Given the headache that incompatibility between GPLv3 and GPLv2 is causing developers, will we see more of this?

    DJB changing the license for his software has nothing to do with GPLv2 vs GPLv3. His software was actually not open source !
  • DJBDNS (Score:4, Interesting)

    by caudron (466327) on Friday November 30, 2007 @09:09AM (#21531175) Homepage
    Good. DBJDNS is, overall, a solid piece of software that kicks the crap outta Bind and leaves it bleeding in a ditch. I'll be glad to see it under a more open license that allows it to prosper and get some of its problems addressed.

    Tom Caudron
    http://tom.digitalelite.com/ [digitalelite.com]

"The vast majority of successful major crimes against property are perpetrated by individuals abusing positions of trust." -- Lawrence Dalzell

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