[Gta04-owner] [Marketing] Ideas / Plan

Dr. H. Nikolaus Schaller hns at goldelico.com
Fri Dec 30 14:56:50 CET 2011

Am 30.12.2011 um 10:27 schrieb rixed at happyleptic.org:

>> Talking about how the wifi firmware has been isolated so it cannot
>> interfere with the O/S is a great example.
> If you are refering to how it was made impossible to replace the
> non-free firmware by a free one, then I wouldn't advertise this too
> loudly :)


It appears that there is a common misunderstanding about the GTA04
capabilities and WiFi firmware. Let me clarify at least for these two lists.

You can always replace the libertas firmware. It is stored in /lib/firmware
and loaded by the MMC/SDIO driver kernel module as soon as it identifies
that the WiFi chip needs the libertas driver.

What you are probably referring to was a proposal by RMS/FSF to
isolate that in hardware for a special variant that FSF could endorse
(maybe with a different name).

There did no appear a volunteer to build a prototype and demonstrate
that it is working, useful and improves freedom at all.

Without a prototype, we can't even think about adding such a thing to
hardware and give it to FSF for promotion.

And, it was never intended to become part of the standard GTA04
which can live IMHO very well without a FSF endorsement, although
an FSF endorsement would automatically give much more public attention.

The better technological way was and is to write an open source
replacement for the firmware and store it as usual in the file system.

Unfortunately, that firmware discussion had gained its own life on
some forums we don't read regularily and was based on assumptions
and prejudices instead of ever asking the project team about the
status... So the "story" was out and impossible to retract.

So please help that others (outside the community) are correctly
understanding this aspect.


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