Subject: Re: Technical Differences of *BSD and Linux
To: arief_mulya <>
From: der Mouse <mouse@Rodents.Montreal.QC.CA>
List: tech-kern
Date: 01/24/2003 00:08:50
> And these are my questions (I'm trying to avoid flame and being a
> troll here, so if there's any of my questions is not on technical
> basis, or are being such a jerk troll please just trash filter my
> name and email address):

Well, you're liable to find yourself getting flamed by all sides here;
even hinting that one's favorite system may not be The Very Best One is
almost certain to draw that sort of reaction from some.

I'm not competent to answer most of your questions, as I don't use
Linux and most especially don't go grubbing around in the Linux kernel.
(This started out because when I first was looking for an open-source
OS, NetBSD was the only practical choice for my hardware.  Now, it's
partly inertia, partly dislike for the GPL, and partly hearing from
people who have looked at both that the Linux code is ugly (reinforced
by what little of it I've seen myself).)


> 4. Any chance of merging the very best part of each kernel?

No, not until someone changes the licenses.  The GPL is sufficiently
obnoxious that it is not legal to merge code under the GPL with code
under other licenses, such as the BSD license.  (Well, to be precise,
it's perfectly legal, but the result is not redistributable at all.
Except, I suppose, if you happen to own enough rights to one of the
pieces of code to rerelease it under the other license....)

You'd have to talk the authors of the code in question into releasing
it under the other license.  Whether this means asking the Linux people
to release under a BSD-compatible license or asking the BSD people to
release under the GPL depends on factors such as whether you want to
import a little BSD code into Linux or vice versa, how many people
you'd have to get agreement from, and whether there are any other
considerations dictating what license you need to end up with.  I
suspect that in either case, you will find you'd have to get approval
from so many people it would be easier to reimplement whatever it is.

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