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FSF, GCC, and SCO Compiler Support

CmdrTaco posted more than 10 years ago | from the hadn't-really-thought-of-that-one dept.

GNU is Not Unix 525

Ancipital was one of several who noted that a special patch is going into GCC. The file is README.SCO, and it is a short writeup about the SCO situation written by the FSF. It stops short of demanding that GCC developers strip SCO support from the compiler, and says more will be announced before the next compiler release.

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525 comments

fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674043)

fp for lunix fagz. fuck FSF, GNU, _AND_ SCO!

first post (-1, Offtopic)

k-zed (92087) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674044)

haha, mod me down

YOU FAIL IT! (-1)

YOU FAIL IT! (624257) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674124)

If I had mod points I would mod you down... to -1, FAILURE!

YOU FAIL IT!

Damn (5, Insightful)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674045)

They should have just removed the support. I don't see how it would harm normal people, as they can keep on using older compilers.

Anyway, this is the right direction. I just hope projects can strip out SCO support without breaking much good code.

Re:Damn (5, Insightful)

ergonal (609484) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674068)

Maybe because they didn't want to stoop to SCO's level (yet).

This is not the way.... (5, Insightful)

shachart (471014) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674069)

I do not believe this is the right way to approach the issue. Let them work this ugly legalese - in courts. How are we any different from Microsoft, if we happen to "exclude" some support from projects because we do not like the receipient? I do not say "let's all develop code for SCO support", but please do not remove any *existing* code.

Re:This is not the way.... (5, Insightful)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674089)

How are we any different from Microsoft, if we happen to "exclude" some support from projects because we do not like the receipient?

It's open source, SCO can fix whatever it wants. I don't see why we should maintain any code who is only going to benefits instances we don't wish to support. Even existing code needs maintenance.

but please do not remove any *existing* code.

On the contrary, please do. Call it a cleanup or refactoring. GCC removes support for obsolete archs all the time.

Re:This is not the way.... (2, Insightful)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674115)

Amen. Otherwise GCC support becomes a political issue with Ins and Outs. What is to keep someone from turning a spat with Microsoft into a severing of Cygwin development.

Indeed, it is a better knife in the back of SCO for everyone who uses it to see it is built upon open foundations.

I have to say this (3, Insightful)

LinuxGeek (6139) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674117)

Do like for your neighbor's dog to come over and crap in your yard? If you let it go every day for a week and they try make it stop, you will have a tough job. If the first dog feels free to come over and poop away, then other dogs will start to feel that they also have the right to use your yard as their own personal pooping grounds. How long before you can't freely use your own yard because it is like a mine field?

You wait just as long as you like to speak up about what SCO is pulling, but shut the fuck up about people that know they need to speak up now to protect their rights.

Re:I have to say this (1)

dinivin (444905) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674178)


There's a difference between speaking up about protecting your rights and acting like a three year old kid.

Dinivin

Re:This is not the way.... (4, Insightful)

Karl Cocknozzle (514413) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674194)

I do not believe this is the right way to approach the issue. Let them work this ugly legalese - in courts. How are we any different from Microsoft, if we happen to "exclude" some support from projects because we do not like the receipient? I do not say "let's all develop code for SCO support", but please do not remove any *existing* code.

Removing SCO support is the right move, and here is why...

Free software is about community. SCO is attempting to destroy that community. Why should community authors help SCO sell their wares and fund the holy war against, essentially, themselves? If supporting an antique operating system in your open-source code perpetuates this lawsuit for even one more day, why should I be required to do it? If I owned any copyrights to code that would be detrimental to SCO if withdrawn, you bet your ass I would consider it. Or at the least, I'd ponder a patch to remove SCO support while maintaining functionality for everybody else. Yes, I know its OSS, and they can download the code, but there's an expense involved for SCO there, too, since developers need to pay mortgages and food bills too.

Yes, it would probably be considered punitive, but as an author I am under no requirement to permanently support every stupid operating system for my software. Crap, does SCO even matter anymore outside of their lawsuit against IBM? I don't really think so.

Re:Damn (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674074)

We need new trolls who can start typing the obligatory

SCO is Dying.

Re:Damn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674161)

it wouldn't harm any normal people because noone uses SCO anymore..

Nothing wrong with discontinuing support for an obsolete operating system in my book.

Re:Damn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674196)

A very good move... it should have been done earlier though. I now hope that more projects will follow this example.

The output of this compiler (5, Funny)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674046)

Of course, the output of this compiler is not executable code. It produces lawsuits instead.

So..... (-1, Redundant)

Tsali (594389) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674052)

... is this SCO's property, too?

%s/license/licence/g (1)

leonbrooks (8043) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674121)

...and maybe they won't notice? (-: deem g/d/r included :-)

Re:So..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674122)

... is this SCO's property, too?

No, it's just "we don't like SCO at the moment, but might make it harder for SCO's userbase to use our tools - but not just yet."

SCO support... (5, Interesting)

borgdows (599861) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674054)

SCO don't care about GCC support of their OS, they do not are a software company anymore but a litigation company.
Stripping SCO support from GCC will only harm SCO's old customers who don't have anything to do with SCO evil.

Re:SCO support... (2, Interesting)

mark_lybarger (199098) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674119)

it might make their customers bitch a little up the ladder and eventually take some time away from the litigation. it's basically giving a blow in the gut any way you can.

Re:SCO support... (4, Funny)

fritter (27792) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674127)

Stripping SCO support from GCC will only harm SCO's old customers who don't have anything to do with SCO evil.

Both of them?

Re:SCO support... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674173)

Yes, both of them, plus those undisclosed Fortune 500 suckers!

Re:SCO support... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674219)

that would be both of them.

Re:SCO support... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674159)

Umm... When the customers of a company get hurt, the company hurts too. Has something to do with revenue and marketshare.

Even SCO needs customers.

Re:SCO support... (4, Informative)

ReadParse (38517) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674162)

If you had RTF message, you would have seen that the FSF used the exact same argument to NOT break GCC on SCO Unix.

Re:SCO support... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674170)

SCO don't care about GCC support of their OS, they do not are a software company anymore but a litigation company.
Stripping SCO support from GCC will only harm SCO's old customers who don't have anything to do with SCO evil.


A)no shit sherlock, that's exactly what the readme says(read before you post)

B)take some english lessons, ok?

Re:SCO support... (1)

IWorkForMorons (679120) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674192)

While I feel for those of are stuck in the middle of SCO's huge field of BS they are currently producing, this decision shouldn't be affected by those customers. SCO has an obligation to it's customers, not the FSF or any other open-source advicate. Those customers now have to make the decision whether to stay with SCO, or move to another platform where they will have support for their software.

Re:SCO support... (1)

RealRoadKill (554583) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674216)

maybe it will incurage SCO's customers to us a non-SCO OS. I say strip it out!! -Dave

What exactly is being done? (3, Insightful)

rokzy (687636) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674055)

it threatens to remove support for SCO Unix, then says it won't.

what's the point?

Re:What exactly is being done? (5, Insightful)

Arker (91948) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674190)

No, read it again.

It says they've been urged to do so, but will not at this time. They're considering it, but have very good reasons not to. If they did remove it, it would be basically a symbolic move that would hurt a few innocent people. Putting in this readme drawing attention to the controversy achieves a similar symbolic statement, without hurting those people. I think it's a good move.

excellent (-1, Offtopic)

Boromir son of Faram (645464) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674059)

This is exactly the kind of grass shoots effort that gives Open Source the edge in this ongoing battle. The key is that we a) control the code for the programs that any *nix-alike needs to be in any way useful and b) have all of the talent that would be necessary for some evil company to make their own. This is exactly how we crippled Windows and the BSDs...SCO will fall in the same way. Long live Linux!

Re:excellent (4, Insightful)

cowbud (200323) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674075)

Exactly that attitude is what the FSF had to have had when they decided to write this "patch" Let the Stone throwing begin. Everyone knows SCO is full of shit why cripple GCC's support for SCO's Unix just because it can be done? Is this going to become a standard practice you done did us wrong now its your turn?

Re:excellent (2, Insightful)

henbane (663769) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674106)

Sounds like someone wishes they had a monopoly all of their very own. What happened to freedom?

Why is it an achievement to "cripple... ...the BSDs"? Not that they have been. And when was windows crippled? Is this a magical post sent back from the future to save mankind?

Re:excellent (1)

Eric Ass Raymond (662593) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674129)

Surely you must be joking!

First of all, what fucking battle? Secondly, who's "we"?

While "we" are at it, why not cripple all the open software so that it will not interoperate properly with those evil, nasty companies? Surely that will coer... eh, help people to "get it" and migrate to free software.

Oh, wait. Wasn't that exactly what Microsoft is being accused of doing?!

shameless (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674060)

shameless karma plug for the coward:

The FSF has asked me to check in this file on both the branch and the
mainline.

Please direct any questions or comments to the FSF.

--
Mark Mitchell
CodeSourcery, LLC
mark@codesourcery.com

2003-08-03 Mark Mitchell

* README.SCO: New file.

===

As all users of GCC will know, SCO has recently made claims concerning
alleged copyright infringement by recent versions of the operating
system kernel called Linux. SCO has made irresponsible public
statements about this supposed copyright infringement without
releasing any evidence of the infringement, and has demanded that
users of Linux, the kernel most often used with the GNU system, pay
for a license. This license is incompatible with the GPL, and in the
opinion of the Free Software Foundation such a demand unquestionably
violates the GNU General Public License under which the kernel is
distributed.

We have been urged to drop support for SCO Unix from this release of
GCC, as a protest against this irresponsible aggression against free
software and GNU/Linux. However, the direct effect of this action
would fall on users of GCC rather than on SCO. For the moment, we
have decided not to take that action. The Free Software Foundation's
overriding goal is to protect the freedom of the free software
community, including developers and users, but we also want to serve
users. Protecting the community from an attack sometimes requires
steps that will inconvenience some in the community. Such a step is
not yet necessary, in our view, but we cannot indefinitely continue to
ignore the aggression against our community taken by a party that has
long profited from the commercial distribution of our programs. We
urge users of SCO Unix to make clear to SCO their disapproval of the
company's aggression against the free software community. We will
have a further announcement concerning continuing support of SCO Unix
by GCC before our next release.

Re:shameless (-1, Offtopic)

phoxix (161744) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674139)

shameless karma plug for the coward:

THANK YOU!

Finally! no more cheesy karma-whoring. Points should be given to people posting intelligent comments, not just copy/pasting information.

Sunny Dubey

Re:shameless (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674166)

yeah, thats what i posted anon. cause you never know which way the crowd will turn- before you know it, you'll have an angry mod on your hands!

Don't do it! (5, Insightful)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674175)

I hate SCO. But to throw a spanner into the works for every GCC user on SCO is evil. It would be like razing an entire town because the city council has a border dispute with you.

Your problem is with the officials, not the inhabitants. All you would achieve is to turn sympathetic users of GCC into your sworn enemy. At what gain?

Many companies use proprietary technology. Some misappropriate Free Software, others allow it to mingle with their own. When a misappropriation takes place, our action need to be litigation, not misguided populist sentiment.

Re:shameless - patch (1)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674217)

s/long profited/generated revenue/

So now... (5, Funny)

mopslik (688435) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674063)

...all programs compiled with the -sco flag will now start with a nag screen urging you to pay $699 to legalize your software?

All programs compiled with the --sco flag... (1)

leonbrooks (8043) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674246)

...will display a WANTED poster featuring D'ohl Macbride. In ASCII if it's not a graphic app. Instead of the usual "dead or alive" terms it will say "for special manned Pluto mission".

In point of fact, paying The SCO Group for a licence makes your software illegal, since applying their licence contradicts the GPL the software is distributed under.

BTW, how much am I bet that the Fortune 500 company in question is Microsoft?

Maybe we should also add a --borg flag which triples the size of the binary, makes it crash randomly every day or so, causes it to repeatedly try to contact servers in the messenger.hotmail.com and msgr.hotmail.com domains, add lots of N's and X's to any webserver logs it can find and open an RPC listener?

... better yet (4, Funny)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674064)

The only thing better than stripping out the support would be generating code that would execute slightly wrongly when run on an SCO OS. Adjusting small decimal numbers just a bit, corrupting a database here and there... every 3 years.

Talk about Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt ;-).

Re:... better yet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674095)

"small decimal numbers just a bit, corrupting a database here and there"

If they're running on an Intel CPU the errors would probably just cancel out...

Re:... better yet (1)

ajs318 (655362) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674142)

You mean, sort of like Microsoft did with Windows 3.1 and DR-DOS?

That would make the Free Software community no better than Microsoft -- it would be stooping to their level.


This, on the other hand, is a shot over SCO's bows -- a warning that we have, and are prepared to use, deadly force, but that we expect not to have to use it.

Re:... better yet (4, Insightful)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674179)

That would make the Free Software community no better than Microsoft -- it would be stooping to their level.

And that level is exactly where we want to be, regarding SCO.

IBM is pulling some dirty tricks (patents) to punish SCO. And we're loving them for it.

Re:... better yet (3, Insightful)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674222)

In a war there are tactics that bring victory or those that bring defeat. SCO's fight is with IBM. IBM is returning fire. That's the legal system.

The GCC issue on the other hand is one party, who has not been harmed in any way, pummeling the users of a maligned company instead of the company itself. This is foolish as it creates enemies from friends.

Re:... better yet (2, Funny)

blibbleblobble (526872) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674234)

"The only thing better than stripping out the support would be generating code that would execute slightly wrongly when run on an SCO OS."

Or when run in a microsoft.com domain

do it!! do it!! do it!! (4, Interesting)

aggieben (620937) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674073)

The README suggests that removing support for SCO unix from GCC would hurt SCO's users, but not SCO. I disagree: If SCO's users can't develop software for their chosen platform anymore, then they will likely choose another platform, and SCO will be the one hurting in the end (which is the desired effect). Of course, there are other compilers out there, but the best ones are limited by platform (icc comes to mind) or can't very well just be a drop in replacement for gcc (everything else).

Re:do it!! do it!! do it!! (5, Insightful)

hellbunnie (70297) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674171)

Yeah, but I'm not so sure that SCO actually want customers anymore. They know that their market share is falling, acting the bully isn't going to change that. I reckon all this lawsuit stuff is just their dying throes, in which case hurting SCO users won't really have any impact on SCO.

Re:do it!! do it!! do it!! (5, Insightful)

Arker (91948) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674225)

SCOs customers are a miniscule source of profit anyway. Their customer base is tiny and shrinking. No one with half a brain has bought it in years, there install base is mostly very old installations that are only there because no one wants to break a working system.

Trying to coerce people like that usually backfires. The people still using SCO, all 10 of them, are already working on installing Linux or *BSD instead. No need to antagonise them. They didn't file the lawsuits, and they didn't buy from the company calling itself SCO in the first place anyway - they bought from what is now Tarantella and while you might not like old SCO either, they're certainly on a different plane from Darl & Co.

Re:do it!! do it!! do it!! (5, Insightful)

JimDabell (42870) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674241)

The README suggests that removing support for SCO unix from GCC would hurt SCO's users, but not SCO. I disagree: If SCO's users can't develop software for their chosen platform anymore, then they will likely choose another platform, and SCO will be the one hurting in the end (which is the desired effect).

Well that depends on whether or not SCO's operating systems are a part of their business plan any more. A lot of people would argue that they are just a lawsuit company now.

There's a big problem with this proposed action though. What message does it send to people who happen to be using SCO, and decided upon Free Software (GCC) for their compiler? Essentially, they are getting the message "you are using an operating system we don't like, so we'll leave you high and dry". It's Free Software, so it's not as bad as when a proprietary vendor drops support, but it's still a big business risk.

We don't want to give the impression that you can't depend on Free Software unless you buy into the whole philosophy and only use FSF-approved operating systems. I think they have done the right thing by making a public issue out of this before actually doing anything, it lets people plan ahead in case this goes ahead, and it gives end-users a chance to talk to SCO about it (if they aren't already).

Slashdot -- Your Daily SCO Update Channel. (1, Troll)

jonathan_ingram (30440) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674077)

Any chance we can stop giving this corporate protection racket so much free publicity?

Mod Parent Up (1, Redundant)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674199)

The best opinions are the solitary voices against the bellowing mob.

This bluster on the part of the GCC developers serves only SCO. Cutting support would make them into a victim in the public eye.

Better to let them die on their own, and keep your own hand free from the blood.

They should have gone ahead with it (5, Interesting)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674078)

There is no reason to continue to support SCO. In fact, I think this action is immediately necessary to let potential licensees of SCO know that they will NOT have a free compiler if they buy SCO/Unix.

There is no reason not to defend the free software community against the illegal actions of SCO. This aggression will not stand.

SCO has profiteered off of the goodwill and charity of millions of programmers across the world. How are they repaying you? By suing you into oblivion and STEALING your code!

This is not the time to be benevolent and charitable. This is the time to be assertive and not let them bully you around.

I strongly urge the likes of the FSF and RedHat, who has already established a legal "defense" fund to also establish a legal "offense" fund and start fighing SCO for violating the GPL and the Copyrights of every developer that had their code distributed by SCO in violation of the GPL.

Everyone is so worried that the GPL won't hold water in court. If you're so worried, than it won't. The time to test the GPL is NOW, so that any weaknesses can be found and corrected.

SCO needs to be taken seriously no matter how irrational or stupid their claims become. Remember that the people they pack juries with are usually just as stupid and irrational.

Re:They should have gone ahead with it (1)

henbane (663769) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674135)

juries ... are usually just as stupid and irrational

Glad to see that the geek community is once more endearing itself to their peers.

If you had any belief in the freedom offered by the GPL you might realise that taking support away from people who use your precious creations is not a good path to take

SCO, what's that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674080)

SCO-support?
this should be an OPTION!
why did they remove NetBEUI support from linux?
why not keep it and leave it as an other feature/option?

we should start archiving antic stuff, just so our kids won't programm NetBEUI from scartch again (example).

i guess this is the down-side of having a monolithic kernel. but then i can compile in whatever i want to use and get a mini-monolithic kernel ;)

www.sledgehammer-tactics.net

Pull SCO support (-1, Offtopic)

countach (534280) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674081)

Why doesn't Linus change the kernel to remove licencing to SCO? Next time SCO wants some Linux code to implement Linux compatibility in Unixware, they won't have permission to even look at the code, and they'll be screwed.

Re:Pull SCO support (1)

joostje (126457) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674123)

Why doesn't Linus change the kernel to remove licencing to SCO?
The GPL makes it rather difficult for him to do so.

Well, he could release a new version of the kernel with only code in it that Linus wrote, and then change the licence. But that would be a lot of work. (rewrite most of the kernel)

So, to release under a new licence, he would have to ask permission from all contributors to change the licence. There are simply too many contributers to do that.

Re:Pull SCO support (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674145)

The GPL explicitly forbids that. ANYONE can use the code.

Re:Pull SCO support (2, Insightful)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674238)

The GPL is non-discriminatory. You cannot single out someone for use or non-use. That would violate the spirit of the GPL.

Suck it up and remember we are Ghandi here, not Hitler.

Pressure (4, Insightful)

jonsb (668273) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674082)

Might cause SCO's clients to put some pressure on them in regards to the current action SCO is taking...

Re:Pressure (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674235)

Both of them?

Difficult (5, Informative)

passthecrackpipe (598773) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674093)

As much as I loath the actions that SCO is taking, this is a difficult issue. Explicitly removing support for SCO systems from GCC goes against the open source definition, items 5 and 6:

  • 5. No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups
    The license must not discriminate against any person or group of persons.
  • 6. No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor
    The license must not restrict anyone from making use of the program in a specific field of endeavor. For example, it may not restrict the program from being used in a business, or from being used for genetic research.
Does this mean the FSF is no longer open source compatible? For the knee-jerkers out there, this is not a troll, it is a serious question. The issue is that Free software should be free, warts and all. Unintended consequences aside, you can't just remove the right to use GCC of any organisation that uses SCO software, it's not right....

And another thing! :-) (1)

passthecrackpipe (598773) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674120)

Seriously, this is exactly the type of thing that will make people look at open source / free software and scream:"Look, they are against making money! Scumbag Communistic hippies!!"

Re:Difficult (1)

beezly (197427) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674133)

Nope, GCC is still distributed under the GPL and it's not the GPL that's discriminating against SCO, it's the developers.

It's the license that the Opensource definition says has to be non-discriminatory.

Re:Difficult (2, Funny)

ccwaterz (535536) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674151)

No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups
"Persons" assumes we are dealing with humans.

Re:Difficult (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674152)

The license must not discriminate against any person or group of persons.

How does pulling some code out of GCC violate this?

Re:Difficult (1)

joostje (126457) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674155)

Well, if they were to remove support for SCO, that doesn't say the *licence* of gcc (GPL) discriminates against SCO.

Also, they haven't removed the code just yet, so

Does this mean the FSF is no longer open source compatible?

Is a bit too early to say, even if they were to change the licence (GPL) instead of the code (gcc).

Re:Difficult (1)

samih (187415) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674157)

But these clauses are about the license, no? The way I see it, it's an entirely different matter if the CODE discriminates against some group. :-)

Re:Difficult (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674160)

It is perfectly normal and reasonable to remove support for obsolete platforms.

Re:Difficult (1)

jcurious (3000) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674168)

no it doesn't... sco would still have the right to make thier own fork of gcc... thier fork would just not be devloped or supported by the FSF

Re:Difficult (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674172)

There is no problem.
It is allowed to remove the SCO specific parts of GCC.
OTOH SCO is allowed to put it back in by creating a GCC fork.

No (4, Informative)

sfraggle (212671) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674174)

gcc is still Open Source. They would not be placing any additional restrictions on the use of gcc, so anybody could create a patch for gcc to make it work again. They would simply be choosing to remove support for SCO Unix from the mainline gcc source, so it would no longer work "out of the box". Besides, they havent actually removed support yet, though they have hinted they may do in the future if SCO continues its behaviour.

The License (1)

zonix (592337) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674198)

I see your point. However, it could be that it's because SCO is seen as being in violation of the GPL themselves - by charging users for using the Linux kernel.

Perhaps this is a question for good 'ol Bruce. :-)

z

Re:Difficult (1)

digidave (259925) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674200)

Read those points again. Both explicitly deal with the license and GCC's license will not change to deny its use on SCO systems. GCC does not have to be compatible with every sytem in existence to be Open Source, as you seem to think.

Re:Difficult (1)

fluch (126140) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674203)

They didn't change the license. FSF is just thinking about stoping supporting gcc on SCO machines. That's something different...

Re:Difficult (2, Informative)

keester (646050) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674239)

you can't just remove the right to use GCC of any organisation that uses SCO software

They are not talking about removing rights to GCC. They are talking about dropping support for SCO in new versions of the GCC.

Let them eat AT&T (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674099)

SCO doesn't have any developers anyway and they certainly don't need to have a good c complier. Let them eat AT&T.

Silly, Silly, Silly (4, Insightful)

rlsnyder (231869) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674101)

Instead of striving for the best possible compiler and tools for the open source community, it's better to engage in a pissing match with SCO? Wouldn't it, perhaps, be better just to keep things moving forward?

Re:Silly, Silly, Silly (1)

Trigun (685027) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674158)

Once the lawsuits settle down, it will all be put back. The developers are distancing themselves from SCO for fear of reprimand. I would too. Take the code out early and don't give them another target. We can always put it back when SCO is made redundant, although it may not be entirely necessary at that point.

Slippery Slope... (5, Insightful)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674102)

You aren't damaging SCO by stripping support in GCC, you are damaging SCO's users. I do not subscribe to either notion of "My enemy's enemy is my friend" nor "My enemy's friend is my enemy."

We must take the higher ground and turn the other cheek, lest we threaten the very trust upon which Open Source is built.

Re:Slippery Slope... (1)

drachenfyre (550754) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674202)

Bullsh*t.

If you bought SCO Unix you've supported this company. Whether willingly or not you bought into the Enron of the computer world. As such you should go down with them or get off the sinking ship.

I'm sorry but when 30-40 other Linux groups out there have been helping the FSF and Open Source in general, there is no reason whatsoever to continue supporting the bastard child of the organization. If your a sysadmin running SCO, it sucks being you. The boat you're on has Titanic written on the bow. At least you can see the iceberg and get on some other cruise line. You've got plenty of notice to get your systems moved off SCO now while the getting is good. If you don't then 'You Loose, You Get Nothing, Good Day Sir'.

There is nothing in the world that says the OSS community needs to be on this insane high moral ground, especially when SCO is writhing around at the very bottom of the heap. To take the moral high ground against SCO doesn't exactly require much more than a step stool. And remember, the OS movement is no longer about the users alone, but about all the companies that keep it thriving. If one of those companies violates the trust of the Open Source community, let the open source community bitch slap them back.

Re:Slippery Slope... (1)

matlokheed (602233) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674221)

It's great to be able to be so noble as to turn the other cheek when someone wrongs you, but by the same token, there's also some satisfaction in punching an enemy in the face.

This isn't about hurting SCO's users. It's about causing trouble for SCO. If you hamstring GCC for SCO, what you end up with is a lot of two things: 1) awareness of the problems (SCO's tactics in particular when GCC isn't compiling anything) and 2) tech support calls (tech support is one of those things that nobody wants to spend money on, yet is absolutely necessary, what happens when the answer is "we're not supported because we're not exactly liked by the writers").

The door swings both ways. Yes, SCO can claim copyright infringement, who knows, what if they even have a claim to it. But to claim that they then can charge for licenses after downloads isn't making them any friends. When you rely on someone else's product that you're directly going against, you should expect to have the rug pulled out from beneath you.

So who's being childish now? (-1, Troll)

anarkhos (209172) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674131)

SCO or FSF?

Seriously guys, the way to beat childishness is seriousness.

Re:So who's being childish now? (1)

sfraggle (212671) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674207)

Saying they're not removing support for the time being is "childish"?

smells like a trial balloon (1)

HBI (604924) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674134)

Looks to me like they are raising the issue to see the upshot before they actually do it.

I wish they would. It would be quite appropriate in this case. SCO is certainly pressuring companies to drop free operating systems for their product, let's play the game their way for a bit. Nothing to be ashamed of there.

I have a feeling this will cause more longterm harm for SCO than this lawsuit, since this cuts SCO off from many of the GNU software packages out there. For that matter, things like Xfree86, KDE and GNOME won't compile either. They could use older compilers - for a while. Ultimately this will force most businesses to reconsider keeping SCO in any way, shape, or form.

I imagine they could either use something like Intel's compiler, or hack up their own, but either solution would be a big problem for them. I am thinking support costs and ensuring compatibility with common packages.

I don't see this as any negative whatsoever. Keeping the support is playing 'nice guy' when the opposing party is pulling out all the stops to screw over OSS. It's just plain foolish.

dropping SCO support would hurt the wrong people (5, Insightful)

wfmcwalter (124904) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674146)

I heartily support the readme.sco idea (frankly its wording is fairly mild).

But GCC shouldn't remove SCO support for reasons of pique or spite. As other posters have said, it won't hurt SCO one bit, but to do so would make GCC, FSF, and the entire free/open software community look petty, and perhaps untrustworthy. GNU software has a long history of running on unsupportive or openly hostile platforms (i.e. windows) and its continuing to do so gives users of those platforms an incremental upgrade-path to freedom. Any action like this, however justified it might feel, would do much more to harm innocent SCO customers and the entire free software community's reputation.

SCO Users (-1, Redundant)

infernalC (51228) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674147)

Asking SCO Unix users to lobby SCO to drop the open source litigation is pointless. For one, SCO Unix users are likely at this point not looking to SCO for additional products and services since SCO Unix sucks and there are better Unix and Unix-like products out there for the x86 (Solaris, GNU/Linux). For two, SCO is not interested in selling Unix of their own accord anymore. They are only interested in selling Unix to folks that they will never give a product to and suing the folks that don't buy the nothing that they offer. Customers don't have much influence when your business model is centered on FUD and litigation.

Changing Code (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674148)

Just a question.

say SCO is right, and all infringing code is revealed. Once that code is replaced, is anyone (or company) still liable for the previous infringement?

I just don't understand their motivation (other than money of course..) for suing first before actually co-operating to get the infringed code removed.

wait.. (2, Informative)

odyrithm (461343) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674164)

this README dosnt say to strip support at all.. it just says its been urged.. and as such the README states this will only effect the end users not SCO..

announcement, not potential action, is FUD (1)

gseidman (97) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674169)

The FSF need not (and should not) remove SCO support from GCC. Indeed, as pointed out in this comment [slashdot.org] , it would be against FSF policy. The announcement itself, however, spreads fear, uncertainty, and doubt. One can argue whether the FSF should engage in FUD tactics at all, but it is worth noting that no action beyond the announcement itself is necessary.

README.SCO (-1, Offtopic)

Zog The Undeniable (632031) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674188)

Apparently the .sco file extension is used for CSound musical scores. The inclusion of this file is going to disappoint many users who thought gcc had gone all multimedia ;-)

Finally! (1)

joostje (126457) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674195)

Finally another SCO story! I've had to go almost 15 hours since the last, and I've almost managed to read most comments from that one already!


Seriously though, the one thing that surprises me about this SCO thing most is the fact that I'm still interested in even more stories. Why is it that I'm not yet bored? Apparently many other other slashdotters too are still interested, judging by the number of posters for each news item.

profit?? (1)

cheesekeeper (649923) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674209)

...aggression against our community taken by a party that has long profited from the commercial distribution of our programs.

What's wrong with commercial distribution? Isn't one of the benefits of free software the right to charge for it as a commercial product if you darn well please? Red Hat makes a pretty good business doing that, and no one would call them Evil.
I think better wording may have been proprietarization of the free software.

Christmas 2003.. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#6674211)

KDE 3.2 came out with all the new goodies. Mr Mcbride tried to compile it.

darl@uware:$ wget ftp://ftp.kde.org/pub/kde/3.2/kde-3.2.tar.gz
darl @uware:$ tar xzjvfaocm kde-3.2.tar.gz
darl@uware:$ cd kde3.2
darl@uware:$./configure --prefix=/opt/kde
checking architecture... i686
checking for compiler... GCC 3.4
checking for Operating system... Unixware

*** Fatal Error ***
GCC 3.4 no longer supports Unixware for legal reasons. To obtain a licence to compile on Unixware please pay $699 for a licence from the GCC foundation.

You could stay with kde 3.1 and gcc 3.3, but you would miss out on all the goodies such as Keramik 2, hyperkaramba, Fast OpenOffice.org 1.1.2 and Gimp with CMYK support

*** End fatal error messsage ***

darl@uware:$ rpm -e gcc-3.4 kde
darl@uware:$ rpm -Uvh twm.rpm gcc-1.0.rpm

A turn for the worse... (2, Insightful)

dardem (182274) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674212)

This goes against what I believed was the reason for gcc in the first place: choice. This is a standard Micro$oft strategy, keeping developers locked by limiting choice. Even despite SCO's evilness, why punish developers/users who are innocent?

It also kinda plays into SCO's hands, i.e. if they were smart enough they could market their own compiler with plenty of "useful", platform specfic features... But I suppose they'd have to prove their OS worth first.

What's next no support for Windoze, because MS believe Open Source is un-American?

I have an idea (1)

TaxSlave (23295) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674213)

Why not, as an interim measure, simply comment out a vital portion of code in a header file. Cause GCC to fail when run under SCO systems, until the user reads the README.SCO file, and uncomments the code. Repeat the warning in a comment in the header file, at the point where the code was commented out.

This way, SCO users will not have to be punished, and GCC will not technically be providing support for SCO out of the box. When the user makes the proper change to allow GCC to work under SCO, they'll learn about the crap SCO is pulling.

Want to put a warning shot across their bow? This would do it.

Adult behaviour is best (4, Insightful)

Mostly a lurker (634878) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674215)

Right now, there is a very important PR battle going on around whether 'free' software is developed by responsible organisations and individuals or a bunch of left wing anti capitalists. 'Free' software's long term commercial success depends to a significant extent on the result of this battle.

Saying that we are going to waste time removing support that already exists because we do not like what SCO has done would look childish to many observers. The message seems like 'you cannot play with us any more'. It would not disturb SCO in the slightest, as any customer crazy enough to buy a SCO license (or SCO maintenance contract) now would not be deterred by the fact that they cannot use leading edge features of the GCC compiler. All it would do is make FSF look unprofessional.

Technological fix (1, Insightful)

richteas (244342) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674227)

Sounds like a technological fix to a legal problem. Not good. Makes it worse.

You can't hurt SCO this way (1)

Jack William Bell (84469) | more than 10 years ago | (#6674242)

I've seen a lot of messages here advocating doing something that 'would hurt SCO' like removing support for SCO systems in the GCC compiler. Besides the fact that this is stooping to their level, it would also have no effect on SCO at all.

Why? Because SCO is no longer a technology company. Their entire business plan is now built around forcing, via the courts, businesses to pay them for software developed and distributed by others. I really doubt they are planning much revenue from sales of their current products, much less continuing to maintain and improve those products in order to maintain their market position.
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