Subject: Re: Announce: NetBSD gets permission to incorporate POSIX(R) material
To: Hubert Feyrer <>
From: Chuck Swiger <>
List: netbsd-users
Date: 02/15/2006 23:09:43
Hubert Feyrer wrote:
> [Thanks for CC:ing me, I'm not on netbsd-users@]

You're welcome.  It seemed appropriate.  :-)

> On Wed, 15 Feb 2006, Chuck Swiger wrote:
>> While this is a fine thing, does that mean that NetBSD will be able to
>> get and/or reproduce or redistribute IEEE 1003/POSIX documentation freely
>> with NetBSD?
> Please note it's the NetBSD Foundation as legal entity that got the
> permission, and NetBSD developers as members of TNF can use the POSIX
> texts from SUSv3 in (most likely) manpage that are intended to be used
> in the NetBSD operating system.

If you include POSIX materials with NetBSD in CVS or on downloadable
distributions, isn't it going to be the case that those materials will be
redistributed by Jane Random NetBSD user when she burns an .iso image and gives
it to a friend who wants to try a new OS?

> Use is not "freely" though: We (TNF) got the obligation to acknoledge
> the copyright when we use POSIX text. As the documentation in question
> is mostly manpages, the obligation is to print a copyright statement in
> the manpages, both in source and in the rendered version of the manpages:
[ ...copyright statement trimmed for brevity... ]

Seems "freely" I meant terms that are miscible with the BSD license in
particular, or perhaps the OSI Open Source Definition more generally.

Keeping a copyright statement intact is perfectly reasonable for them to ask and
for BSD users to comply with; in many European countries, there's an intrisic
"right of an author"/"droit d'authur" which would apply, regardless.

[ ... ]
> Please note also that the plan is NOT to blindly import all POSIX/SUSv3
> manpages, but only use what is needed to document the actual state of
> the NetBSD operating system with its tools and interfaces. We just don't
> need to rewrite things like the manpages for the upcoming wide-curses work.

That makes sense.

So long as NetBSD is willing to accept patches if there is any big discrepancy
between the current state and the POSIX specs, and so long as a few specific
forms of security-related braindamage (eg, chroot()) are limited to those who
invoke POSIX_ME_HARDER or a sysctl, this sounds wonderful to me.

Does this mean that NetBSD will become POSIX-certified?  If so, who pays for it,
or is NetBSD getting a chance to be certified "freely", too?

Thanks for your response,