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USENIX Responds to SCO; Fyodor Pulls NMap

michael posted more than 10 years ago | from the tit-for-tat dept.

Caldera 846

ronys writes "The venerable USENIX organization has written a fine response to SCO's letter to Congress. As they point out, 'USENIX was here before SCO. USENIX was here before Linux.' Short and well written." And Reece Arnott writes: "As part of the NMap Press Release for the latest version of NMap, is a statement that explicitly revokes SCO's licence to redistribute it. From the press release: 'SCO Corporation of Lindon, Utah (formerly Caldera) has lately taken to an extortion campaign of demanding license fees from Linux users for code that they themselves knowingly distributed under the terms of the GNU GPL. They have also refused to accept the GPL, claiming that some preposterous theory of theirs makes it invalid (and even unconstitutional)! Meanwhile they have distributed GPL-licensed Nmap in (at least) their "Supplemental Open Source CD". In response to these blatant violations, and in accordance with section 4 of the GPL, we hereby terminate SCO's rights to redistribute any versions of Nmap in any of their products, including (without limitation) OpenLinux, Skunkware, OpenServer, and UNIXWare. We have also stopped supporting the OpenServer and UNIXWare platforms.'"

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We live in interesting times.. (5, Informative)

grub (11606) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407185)

For those too lazy to look up Section 4 of the GPL [gnu.org]:
4. You may not copy, modify, sublicense, or distribute the Program except as expressly provided under this License. Any attempt otherwise to copy, modify, sublicense or distribute the Program is void, and will automatically terminate your rights under this License. However, parties who have received copies, or rights, from you under this License will not have their licenses terminated so long as such parties remain in full compliance.
Now this gets interesting: if SCO continues to distributed NMAP will the FSF start filing lawsuits? This might be the "Big Test" everyone has been waiting for.

/me makes a bowl of popcorn and sits back to enjoy the show.. (as an aside, does anyone know what compiler SCO uses to generate their binaries?)

Re:We live in interesting times.. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407211)

In a word, bravo! This will make for an interesting summer.

Re:We live in interesting times.. (5, Funny)

Curtman (556920) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407367)

Finally those capitalist bastards will pay for their crimes. 'Eh comrades? 'Eh?

Re:We live in interesting times.. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407214)

holy shit fuck you faggot nice fp!

Re:We live in interesting times.. (5, Interesting)

robslimo (587196) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407233)

I don't think this will be the Big Test (how much legal weight can Fyodor swing if SCO violates his decree?), but it may be the first of many similar actions that, collectively, might get something done.

Are there other popular open source products whose authors can agree to make a similar statement?

Re:We live in interesting times.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407308)

Right, but NMAP is distributed under the GPL, the FSF are the "gatekeepers" of that license. It should be up to them to defend it (thus far they've been proactive at getting companies to open up code without going to court)

Re:We live in interesting times.. (5, Informative)

BJH (11355) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407368)

No, the FSF will only generally defend the GPL for software where the copyright belongs to them (i.e. software written by the FSF or which has had its copyright assigned to the FSF by its author).

The simple reason is that only the copyright holder can sue someone for violating that copyright.

Re:We live in interesting times.. (4, Interesting)

autocracy (192714) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407237)

I wonder if one could say SCO has actually violated the license. They've certainly made all the effort in the world to bastardize it, but have they broken it by going against any provisions from the license?

Re:We live in interesting times.. (5, Insightful)

bhtooefr (649901) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407254)

IANAL, but if I were a judge, I'd see that their declaring the GPL invalid is a disagreement with the GPL, which says that you can use the software, but not distribute it if you disagree with the GPL.

Re:We live in interesting times.. (2, Informative)

rokzy (687636) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407264)

if they're saying GPL is unconstitutional and allows enemy nations to develop WMDs, then I'm guessing they don't accept it.

and if you don't accept the license you can't distribute GPL software (assuming you accept copyright, which SCO do)

Re:We live in interesting times.. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407294)

Nope. SCO believe that all GPL'd software is really public domain, since the GPL is (allegedly) unconstitutional. And they think that, by getting the GPL ruled invalid, suddenly all this code will become public domain and fair game for anyone who wants it.

I can't wait for the collective Linux developers to sue them outright, should they get the GPL overturned, for copyright infringement (since the code does NOT actually go PD but rather reverts to standard copyright, which is of course more restrictive by default with regards to copying).

Re:We live in interesting times.. (2, Insightful)

rokzy (687636) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407317)

SCO may not *believe* they would be violating copyright law by ignoring the GPL, but ignorance is no excuse is it?

either way the law is against SCO.

Re:We live in interesting times.. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407335)

Yup, even without the GPL, SCO is still bound by copyright laws.
They need to now get permission to distribute the software from the copyright holder (as I understand it the GPL is one such form of permission), and they seem to have been denied it.

Re:We live in interesting times.. (4, Interesting)

OmniGeek (72743) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407376)

Yes, SCO has violated the GPL by attempting to force users to buy licenses from them in addition to the GPL (note recent /. story on this one, I forget the link). They can sell copies, but trying to hang additional license terms on existing users is a violation.

For that matter, SCO's refusal to accept the terms of the GPL in and of itself disallows them from redistribution under it; it would be VERY hard for SCO to convincingly argue they haven't refused to accept the terms of a license they claim is "unconstitional".

Thus, they're hosed twofold.

Re:We live in interesting times.. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407300)

Holt Christ dude! Fucking awesome observation!

Re:We live in interesting times.. (4, Funny)

dnoyeb (547705) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407305)

I suspect that after this next "Big Test," everyone will still be waiting on the "Big Test."

Re:We live in interesting times.. (1)

init-five (745157) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407337)

I think the parent has a very interesting question. What compiler does SCO use to generate their binaries?

ummm.. (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407200)

Doesn't the GPL say you cannot discriminate against any group? Or is their license being revoked because they are in violation of the GPL?

Re:ummm.. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407226)

Doesn't the GPL say you cannot discriminate against any group?

People, yes. I didn't see any mention of pond scum, horse excrement or Mormons.

Re:ummm.. (4, Informative)

bhtooefr (649901) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407284)

They're in violation of the GPL, by not fulfilling the terms necessary to be allowed to distribute the software under Section 4.

Fyodor: A Slashdot Sponsored Criminal (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407201)

Or "World's biggest biter bites back."

Some people would leave it at "YHBT" and walk away. This is S.O.P. on Slashdot. So when I posed as a hot LinuxWorld booth babe in a Slashdot poll [slashdot.org] [slashdot.org] (if you'll read that comment, you'll see that it wasn't even remotely credible-sounding) and left an email address, I got quite a few messages from lonely Lunix geeks hoping to hook up. Wanting pictures, naked pictures, etc., the kind of tactless crap you'd expect from someone who's still alone in their mid-30s.

And so I recieve the email from Fyodor, out looking for love. I emailed him back, letting him know he'd been trolled. "Don't feel bad, it happens to the best of us." So he emails me back telling me, among other things, that he regularly trolls mailing lists for women and that chances are, sooner or later, he'll find a willing warm body. So, like, the odds are in his favor. So he tells me. Anyway, he sounded none too happy.

So I mentioned him as one of the respondents on Trolltalk, with something like "look at the bunch of wankers I got who actually believed me enough to email me!". Apparently, this is enough to justify hacking my computer and invading my privacy for 9 hours, according to him. This happens a week or two down the road from the original posting in Trolltalk. So I load Trolltalk one day to find out he's made an entire webpage filled with screenshots from my computer and lots of personally identifying information (my full name, home address, everything) while telling me that I'd better change all my passwords quick, because he stole those too.

All this for getting suckered in by an obvious troll and getting called a wanker as a result. Earth to Fyodor: grow the fuck up. Sheesh, what a sociopathic crybaby.

For reference, you can see an archive of Trolltalk from the period here [trollaxor.com] [trollaxor.com]. Scroll down a little to find Fyodor's posts and the subsequent responses.

Is your company running tools written by malicious hackers [slashdot.org] [slashdot.org]?

MOD PARENT UP! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407232)

The truth needs to get out about Fyodor!

Re:Fyodor: A Slashdot Sponsored Criminal (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407240)

Yeah, well.. I'm a criminal too. And no one gives a shit. You did some lame shit and you got hacked, you deserve it you asshole.

Re:Fyodor: A Slashdot Sponsored Criminal (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407287)

Fyodor responded by using information disclosure vulnerabilities in yahoo email to find the originating IP address of the Slashdot prankster

Vulnerabilities like mail headers, perhaps?

About time someone did it (5, Interesting)

DarkMagician07 (686278) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407206)

It's good to see someone use the GPL back at $CO for what it is worth. If Fyodor hadn't, would anyone else?
I would hope so, but so far it doesn't seem to be happening. I can't wait for others to do the same. Maybe groups like Samba can muster up the courage to do the same to these guys. Since $CO seems to be touting integration with Windows networks, losing Samba would be one of the things that they couldn't afford to do.

Re:About time someone did it (4, Insightful)

stevesliva (648202) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407316)

To what extent would Apache, Samba, and NMap explicitly preventing SCO from distributing those packages affect SCO customers? Could SCO customers still obtain those packages on their own?

Re:About time someone did it (4, Insightful)

BJH (11355) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407385)

Sure they could - the customers are not SCO.

However, what's the advantage of spending big buck$ on a commercial OS if you immediately have to go and download a metric shitload of free software to make it usable?

free software - no more (1, Insightful)

hubertf (124995) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407207)

So with a restriction like "may no longer be distributes with ", is it still "free software"?

I wouldn't say so.

- Hubert

Re:free software - no more (3, Interesting)

3.5 stripes (578410) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407229)

It's free with the condition that you must stay within the provisions of the GPL.

Maybe you're thinking of BSD?

Re:free software - no more (5, Interesting)

C_Kode (102755) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407230)

Sure it is. They didn't say users of SCO couldn't use it. They just said SCO can't distribute it. Althought, stopping support for SCO is another deal. Of course that doesn't mean someone else can't take the source and support SCO with it. As I noted though, all they have done is say SCO can't distribute it due to licensing infringements. (just as SCO said IBM did)

Re:free software - no more (1)

rokzy (687636) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407235)

"free" in the sense of "you can use it so long as you're not trying to kill us and everything we stand for."

Re:free software - no more (5, Informative)

rtz (221437) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407242)

RTFA, they are not changing the license. They are invoking a clause in the existing license.

Re:free software - no more (4, Interesting)

autocracy (192714) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407261)

It's still free software in every sense. You need to consider that just as the folks from mplayer would still have mplayer be free software, the company that they're accusing of breaking the license by incorporating code from mplayer into a proprietary binary-only product would no longer have rights to mplayer.

The sandbox may be free for everybody, but you're still getting kicked out if you keep hitting the other kiddies in the head with your plastic shovel.

Re:free software - no more (5, Interesting)

steveit_is (650459) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407286)

Actually, yes it is still free software. They have violated the existing GPL license, he is simply pointing out that after having violated that license, they no longer have any right to make use of the software. He isn't ammending the GPL, he's jsut making it obvious that they are violating it.

NO. Re:free software - no more (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407291)

NO. SCO is violating the GPL by placing additional terms on anyone's use of linux distrabutions. There's a clause in the GPL that states that any additional terms will cause their license to be terminated. Since SCO's GPL license is terminated, the copyright authors for nmap could do whatever they want. They could even sue.

Now let this be a lesson to all, don't violate the GPL! Nmap's action against SCO doesn't make it non-free, it's just that SCO has rejected the GPL and is using a product in violation of copyright law.

Good Job (5, Insightful)

Czmyt (689032) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407210)

It's about time that someone took this stance and let's hope that others do as well. The free-ride double-standard is over.

Nice. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407216)

Right on. I have nothing to say except that this is the kind of move we need by anyone who can make such a move.

I guess its (3, Interesting)

AbbyNormal (216235) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407220)

SCO's time to put up or shut up. This could be interesting in a few ways. If SCO continues to distribute NMAP, will USENIX sue on GPL grounds? That would be a great case to watch.

Oops. (0, Offtopic)

ActiveSX (301342) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407221)

As far as I can tell, this sort of thing violates the Debian Free Software Guidelines [debian.org], rule number 5:

No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups

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

Re:Oops. (2, Insightful)

grub (11606) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407255)

I don't think they are allowed to modify the licensing terms, that may only apply to their own software written in-house. If they could modify the terms then the GPL loses all its bite.

Re:Oops. (5, Insightful)

26199 (577806) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407257)

You're allowed to discriminate against people who break the terms of the licence :-)

In fact you pretty much have to.

Re:Oops. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407260)

and why does anyone care what Debian Free Software Guidelines are? Why would a distributions guidelines affect someone else that is involved in that distro?

Re:Oops. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407262)

Sorry, Debian != FSF. They don't run the GPL.

Re:Oops. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407265)

The DFSG is not the GPL.

Re:Oops. (5, Insightful)

Bob(TM) (104510) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407274)

There was no discrimination; SCO opted out of accepting the licensing terms of the NMAP software. Since they have said publicly that they do not accept the GPL, usage of any GPL licensed software is immediately forbidden under the terms of the license. The NMAP folks simply pulled the trigger in textual form.

Re:Oops. (3, Interesting)

Sam H (3979) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407283)

As far as I can tell, this sort of thing violates the Debian Free Software Guidelines, rule number 5:
No Discrimination Against Persons or Groups
Of course, any license discriminates against this special group consisting of the persons who do not respect licenses. These guidelines should be treated as such, and not abusively taken to the letter.

Re:Oops. (1)

autocracy (192714) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407304)

It doesn't discriminate against a person or a group - it discriminates against an action against the other provisions in the license.

No SCO Discrimination here. (2, Informative)

big-giant-head (148077) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407306)

Generally defined discrimination is based: Age, Race, Nationaliy or Sex. Or some combination of those.

Hence unless SCO can somehow be defined as an Age Group?? No

Race?? No

Nationality ?? No

Sex?? M, F, or SCO - No

So to descriminate (legally speaking) you would have to revoke thier lincense based on one of these criteria.

However, if a licensee is behaving in bad faith, i.e. SCO, that is a legal ground for revoking thier license. I think it could easily be argued SCO is acting in bad faith through out this whole affair.

Re:No SCO Discrimination here. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407377)

Actually, look at it again - it says person or group of people.

Re:Oops. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407313)

It doesn't. SCO made the choice to violate the GPL not accepting its terms but still distributing GPL'ed software. Thus, they made the decision not to distribute GPL software on their own and for the NMap crew, they are just pointing out that choice to SCO. Furthermore, NMap should have the choice as to what it does and does not support as far as the program goes. Nothing is stopping you, or me, or anyone else for that matter from redistributing NMap with support for SCO's operating systems.

Re:Oops. (2, Interesting)

Paladin2ez (619723) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407326)

As far as I can tell, that clause generally meant political / social / economic groupings, as it applies to sexism/racism/sexualityism (yes I know, its not a word, coin it a term). In a case like this they are not being discriminated against for their thoughts or beliefs.

Any manufacturer can pull a product from usage on certian platforms if they feel it would give the competition further power (Companies distributing to specific game consoles for example).

Its just plain capitalism, and like it or not, that still drives alot of what we do.
Now these are the thoughts of one non-legally knowledgable person, so please others follow up with legalese if you are able.

Re:Oops. (2, Informative)

chamcham (647769) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407331)

Nmap is still GPL. They didn't modify it. The debian guideline states that the license cannot discriminate against persons or groups -- the GPL is compatible w/ this statement / 'social rule' for debian. Nmap just invoked the part of the GPL that lets them revoke the license from an individual or group. Nmap is discriminating, not the GPL.

To that i say: rock on!

Re:Oops. (4, Informative)

bhtooefr (649901) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407334)

5. You are not required to accept this License, since you have not signed it. However, nothing else grants you permission to modify or distribute the Program or its derivative works. These actions are prohibited by law if you do not accept this License. Therefore, by modifying or distributing the Program (or any work based on the Program), you indicate your acceptance of this License to do so, and all its terms and conditions for copying, distributing or modifying the Program or works based on it.

I'd consider declaring it invalid is not accepting the license. Therefore, they're in violation of Section 5 (for distributing without agreeing to the license), and Section 4 (for distributing without being allowed to by the GPL, due to Section 5)

Bully for you... (2, Redundant)

lauterm (655930) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407228)

Good job. It is nice to see someone finally call SCO on the whole the GPL is invalid but we think we can still use software released under it issue.

Background Info and History of Fyodor (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407234)

Slashdot has an interview [slashdot.org] with security legend Fyodor [kitetoa.com], admin of the famed insecure.org [insecure.org] and author of the world's most affordable port scanner, nmap [insecure.org].

The best part of this interview is that Slashdot does not often interview criminals. Many Slashdot readers know that Fyodor used his tool to illegally attack a college student in 2002, for his personal amusement but also to the benefit of Slashdot's admins. For those that don't know the story, I will present a brief summary.

*Those individuals interested in independently verifying the facts presented in this article should skip to the "Verification" section near the end.

Sdem [slashdot.org] had created a hoax account entitled electricmonk [slashdot.org], and used it to post this comment [slashdot.org] pronouncing that we was actually a cute Linux booth babe. "electricmonk" left an email at Yahoo and encouraged Slashdot readers to get in touch.

Fyodor proceeded to do so, boasting of his previous exploits with women he'd met online. He was even helpful enough to attach a picture.

This is where the story turns ugly. Sdem responded with a truthful email, in which he advised Fyodor that the whole thing was a hoax. After that, sdem posted a log of his exploits to sid=20721 (trolltalk), mentioning that he had tricked Fyodor and referring to many of the biters as "wankers". This apparently really set Fyodor off, and he began to plot criminal revenge.

First, Fyodor dug through insecure.org's referrer logs to find what IP address had requested the picture of Fyodor & his paramour. Using this information (and the logged User-Agent), Fyodor knew from the get-go Sdem's IP address and O/S. From this point, he launched nmap against Sdem's box and was greeted with the holy grail of sorts for BlackHats: an open X windows server on port 6000.

Sdem had been running an X-windows server for Windows on his Win2k box. Fyodor was able to bypass the authentication on the X-windows server and used the X-windows server to take complete screen captures of Sdem's machine whilst sniffing and recording keystrokes.

Fyodor proceeded to take hours worth of screen captures, including information on a "secret troll irc server" that sdem was using. Fyodor wrote a detailed writeup of what he observed, including an irc robot used on the server to detect new Slashdot stories for the purpose of early posting. Fyodor also mined and posted as much information about Sdem as he could find, including his real name and contact information. Jamie McCarthy used this illegally obtained information shortly after it was posted to log on to the irc server, monitor the bot, and modify Slashdot in order to break the story monitor.

Fyodor even submitted his "troll hunting" story to Slashdot, though it was rejected.

After he was done hacking Sdem's computer, Fyodor posted his screen captures and a log of his breakin to www.insecure.org/tmp/trolls [insecure.org]. The content was removed 24 hours later. He went on to boast in sid=20721 about his "troll hunting finale". While sid 20721 is regularly cleaned, a cache of Fyodor's boasting about his illegal break-in is available here [trollaxor.com]. Very interesting reading.

So, while Fyodor's interview is no doubt very interesting, I think that, as an accomplished (and due to the lack of prosecution very successful) criminal, the nature of questions given to Fyodor in the interview don't do justice to the type of expertise this man has in illegally penetrating computers across state lines and getting away with it. I'm sure that many companies would like to have a man of this caliber at their disposal in order to infiltrate and destroy their competitor's IT infrastructure.

Of course, no sane person would use this man's software without compiling it from inspected source, given his history. Fortunately the folks at Redhat pore over his code with a fine toothed comb before including it in their distribution, so if you've ever wanted to peer into the mind of a madman, I encourage you to take a look at Redhat's copy of nmap.

Also if anyone has a cached copy of fyodor's insecure.org/tmp/trolls page, please let me know in the comments so we can get it hosted. This particular piece of sordid Slashdot history just became more relevant.

Additional reading:
Sdem's account of the incident [slashdot.org]
Trolltalk cache, circa break-in [trollaxor.com]
Cache of Fyodor's "Troll Hunting 101" from www.insecure.org/tmp/trolls [trollaxor.com]

Above are caches of both Fyodor's bragging about the break-in on his web site, and his bragging in a Slashdot comment about having hacked Sdem. Numerous people witnessed this and have posted comments in my following journal entries certifying to the veracity of these mirrors. To date, no one at Slash Team and no one at insecure.org has denied it. Nor will they; they have almost certainly been advised by legal counsel not to speak about it in public.

That said, any journalist or researcher wishing to pursue this story may wish to take additional steps. The Slashdot editorial staff was well aware of this story when it happened. Jamie McCarthy used Fyodor's information to penetrate the irc server Fyodor discovered and attack the irc bot he found there. Jamie McCarthy and Michael Sims are both aware of the details surrounding this incident and can confirm their recollection and involvement in the incident by email. Their email addresses are easily available to a curious researcher so I won't bother repeating them for spam robots, but suffice it to say that asking Jamie the question "did you see Fyodor's page on his web site in which he took screen captures from a hacked trolls computer" will probably yield you positive confirmation. There is the possibility that they won't want to involve themselves for legal reasons, but I doubt it. Jamie is historically honest to a fault and forthcoming when approached with a legitimate question.
So, if you're a doubter, email the Slashdot editorial staff. Fyodor is a Black Hat, and the eds know it.

From the (5, Interesting)

LittleLebowskiUrbanA (619114) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407239)

"it's about time" dept.

Seriously, wonder what SCO will do if Samba and the other well known projects follow suit?

Re:From the (5, Insightful)

grub (11606) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407290)

Seriously, wonder what SCO will do if Samba and the other well known projects follow suit?

What they've been doing for the past year: hire more lawyers. SCO isn't a software company any more.

Time is right (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407241)

This is burning bridges, but I really can't see SCO coming to their senses, so their users should get a feeling for the kind of situation which SCO is asking for.

Would someone from Samba and Apache (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407245)

please get on this bandwagon? Thanks.

Would someone from Samba & Apache ... needs (3, Insightful)

adzoox (615327) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407285)

Give them some knowledgeable attorneys, some time, and the 250K it would take to fight it - I'm sure they'd lend a hand.

That's what the FSF is for (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407346)

Either the EFF or FSF should be able to help out - that's what they are there for. They can use part of our yearly donations to cover the cost (all you readers did give a donation to both orgainizations, right?)

Re:Would someone from Samba and Apache (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407361)

Apache has it's own licence that is far less restrictive in what can be done with the code than the GPL, SCO can do what they like with any code from Apache.

See here: http://www.apache.org/licenses/ [apache.org]

This could get interesting (4, Insightful)

GoMMiX (748510) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407248)

What if SCO doesn't comply?

I doubt seriously that they will, so what will come of their non-compliance?

Probably nothing, really, but this may well be another part of the GPL put to the test. They've stepped up to the plate with Nmap - I hope they're ready to play ball.

Okay, now lets all get ready from some good FUD from Darl!

*GASP* "Ohh my, it appears we own code in Nmap too!"

Fyodor pulls nmap (1)

morelife (213920) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407269)

Ok Mr. Torvalds, time for you and all the kernel developers to do the same with the kernel.

Re:Fyodor pulls nmap (2, Interesting)

BJury (756346) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407370)

Only problem is SCO would counter sue Linus. They cant counter-sue Samba, Apache, PostGreSQL, etc, as their software is not in dispute.

Way to go, Fyodor! (3, Interesting)

Noryungi (70322) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407273)

I really appreciate his stand against SCO. Maybe a lot of other GPL projects (Gnome, KDE *hint* *hint*) may also decide to revoke SCO's right to use their software.

Picture this: a worldwide tribe of programmers, all saying to SCO that they can't use this or that program with OpenLinux, UnixWare and so on. If everyone sent $1 to the FSF to cover future litigation at the same time...

Slashdot backend code (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407282)

if (SCO topic)
goto http://groklaw.net
else if (Gadget stuff)
goto http://arstechnica.com
else if (Linux stuff)
goto http://linuxtoday.com
else if (good journalism stuff)
goto http://theregister.co.uk
goto http://news.bbc.co.uk

Bad move (-1, Redundant)

Manip (656104) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407288)

I am not pro-SCO, but this sets a very bad president. I, for one didn't realise that owners could block companies from using their code and don't like it one little bit. This is fine when used correctly, but wait until the time when it is misused and one distro is blocking another etc
We are at the top of the moral hill, don't let us slide down it!

Re:Bad move (5, Informative)

steveit_is (650459) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407320)

That is not what this is about, it is quit simply about Fyoder enforcing an already existing clause of the GPL (4). He's not ammending the thing to lock SCO out. He is just making it a little more clear that having violated section 4 they are no longer entiteled to make use of or distribute NMap.

Re:Bad move (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407349)

How could the parent get 1 point?

As has been pointed out a few times:
SCO is violating GPL they therefore have no right to use any GPLed code. (Either you accept the GPL or it is copyrighted code)

nmap is just explicitly stating this.

And if they don't want to support SCO any longer that's up to them as well. It guess it means that in the future nmap might not compile on SCO out of the box,...

Re:Bad move (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407350)

They (the nmap ppl) can only do it because SCOG is in violation of the GNU GPL. If SCOG stops violating the GNU GPL, they can no longer be "blocked".

Re:Bad move (2, Insightful)

Lussarn (105276) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407354)

I would agree with you but SCO doesn't follow the GPL (Adding other licenses on top) and call it unconstitutional among other things. And if they can't play by the rules of the GPL they should have no part of programs distributed under it. Thats why we have licenses in the first place.

It already has happened (1)

3.5 stripes (578410) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407371)

Think the X (something) license changes, Mysql, etc...

As long as the distros are not violating the GPL, or enacting licenses which violate it, these scenario you propose is pretty unlikely.

Re:Bad move (3, Insightful)

Dunark (621237) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407380)

This isn't about liking SCO or not liking SCO.

SCO has publicly denied the validity of the only license they have to distribute the software.
If they don't accept the license, they can't distribute the software. Distributing without a license is copyright infringement.

Re:Bad move (0, Flamebait)

l3pYr (754852) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407386)

I don't see what George W has to do with all of this (or did you mean precedent?) Anyways, SCO's rights of use for NMAP are being revoked because they violated the terms of the GPL. Not because they are being discriminated against. In fact, the GPL inherently prohibits the kind of discrimination you are referring to.

Forget SCO... (3, Interesting)

cr@ckwhore (165454) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407292)

Forget about the SCO item in the 3.50 changelog... the bigger news about nmap is that it recently appeared in "HaXXXor Volume 1: No Longer Floppy".

Which, OK... is kinda weird, but how often to well respected tools link to cheasy porn sites? http://www.insecure.org/nmap/nmap_haxxxor.html

From the changelog [OT] (5, Funny)

atarola (601134) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407293)

To emphasize the highly professional nature of Nmap, all instances of "fucked up" in error message text has been changed to "b0rked".
I wish i could do this kind of stuff in my programming, it's freaking hilarious.


Re:From the changelog [OT] (5, Funny)

grub (11606) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407338)

I wish i could do this kind of stuff in my programming, it's freaking hilarious.

man sed

One question. (4, Interesting)

Sheetrock (152993) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407298)

If you release software under the GPL and somebody you fundamentally disagree with (like SCO) starts to use it within the confines of the GPL, can you pull their right to use it?

Somehow, I doubt you can, and this may be something to address in the next iteration of the GPL. Too late for the pool of software out there, perhaps, but not for new versions.

USENIX letter (5, Insightful)

howlatthemoon (718490) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407303)

Great letter! Of course, it relies on congress seeing hypocrisy as a bad thing. Unfortunately, it is often par for the course.

Obligatory $699 Joke (5, Funny)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407310)

"Dear Mr McBride,
Please pay $699 for every installation of SCO Unix due to the presense of NMAP."

In USENIX Russia, Darl pays YOU $699!

Re:Obligatory $699 Joke (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407369)

"Dear Mr. McBride, don't forget to pay your $699 NMAP licensing fee, you cock-smoking teabagger!"

with apologies to the SCO$699_troll

This so called "community" (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407322)

RMS talkes of the community good. This is a clear example of the reason that the GPL will fail. By withholding the license from one group, the community will be broken up. The community will only work under competition, but cooperation. Economics 101 says that.

This is why the BSD license will always work, but the GPL wont.

And SCO Cares cause? (2, Insightful)

cyberlotnet (182742) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407323)

Here is a company who in public says GPL is not legal. And these people are trying to use GPL against them.

SCO is not going to listen, they haven't listened to sense and reason since this whole thing started whats to make anyone think they will listen to a legal statement based on GPL which they declare is not legal to begin with.

In theory its great but unless nmap has the ability to back up its legal claims in court its pretty useless in this matter.

Re:And SCO Cares cause? (2, Informative)

iapetus (24050) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407383)

Here is a company who in public says GPL is not legal. And these people are trying to use GPL against them.

Um. No they aren't. If SCO believes that the GPL is not legal, then they do not have a license to use and distribute nmap. Now they're being called on it. The default state of software where the copyright is held by someone else is that you do not have the right to use it, and just disagreeing with the license they're distributing the software under doesn't magically give you the right to steal their IP.

More interesting, however, is the question of whether nmap have the right to retract the license from SCO (IANAL, but I'm pretty sure they don't - that's part of the point of the GPL, after all). And a new license that explicitly denies SCO the right to use the code wouldn't be GPL-compatible, AIUI.

That said, in order to exercise their rights under the GPL, SCO have to agree to it. They can't claim it's an invalid license while at the same time agreeing to it in other cases. My guess is that they'll just ignore this problem and try to keep their two faces pointing different ways on the issue...

Can you smell the shareholder value now? (4, Insightful)

scorp1us (235526) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407324)

MMM a big steaming pile of crap. SCO forgot that an OS is nothing without apps. So as these apps start revoking themselves fromt he SCO distrib, the value of their product falls, along with the stock price, which is the exact opposite of what Darl wanted to do...

Looks like he'll prove himself the fool. I do feel bad for his family. He could have been something some day.

Will any big projects join in (2, Interesting)

Albanach (527650) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407344)

Losing nmap is unlikely to hurt SCO - anyone that needs nmap is going to be smart enough to download th gzip

Where it would get really interesting is if any other big projects pulled the plug. Imagine no Apache for SCO? (okay we should probably resolve the existing fight over the apache license before starting another) but what about no Samba?

I'm not entirely convinced that it's the right approach - I'd rather just see SCO beaten, but it'd sure hurt them if they lost some big pieces of software.

The HaXXXor girl is responsible...methinks (1)

franoculator (714656) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407356)

Does anyone else suspect that the star of the latest nmap promotional video, HaXXXor girl, or whatever her name is, maybe have convinced Fyodor?

Seriously, kudos to the guys with guts to stand up against those pigs, let's hope the SCO folks take notice.

/me wonders if Darl reads slashdot...wait, can Darl read at all?

Why is the open source community taking so long? (4, Interesting)

cluge (114877) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407357)

Hurray FyDoR! But nmap is one of many, many open source programs distributed by SCO. Why isn't the entire open source community tell SCO that their software can't be distrubted, things like KDE, Gnome, and the GNU projects tar, make et al? I belive that other open source projects should start demanding that SCO stop distributing them.

What to do with for enforcement? With so many pending legal battles against SCO, it would only be a matter of time before an IBM, Novel/Suse, or Redhat picks up the illegal acticity and uses it in court. Additionally it is an election year. I'm quite sure that if we as a community looked hard enough we could find a hungry DA.

AngryPeopleRule [angrypeoplerule.com]

Dorky GPL question: (5, Interesting)

Asprin (545477) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407362)

When I checked out the NMAP link, I eventually clicky=clicky-clicky'ed overt to the insecure.org homepage [insecure.org] and saw (about halfway down) that part of the source for NMAP was featured in the movie Battle Royale.

So, this got me thinking: Since NMAP source is GPL, does it's inclusion in Battle Royale make the movie a derivative work and therefore also subject to the GPL?

Just thought I'd ask, because I don't think that - other than the DeCSS - case, anyone's ever mentioned this possiblility.

Uhhh... (5, Insightful)

Scarpux (556596) | more than 10 years ago | (#8407363)

IANAL and all that but I think the NMap folks are on shaky ground here. SCO has not attempted to "copy, modify, sublicense, or distribute the [NMap] except as expressly provided under [the GPL]".

They have attempted that with the Linux kernel however. So I don't see how SCO has violated the GPL with respect to NMap.

I do approve of the effort however.
Good luck with that

Why give SCO ideas? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8407373)

Won't this backfire? Now that SCO knows this section 4 power is available,
won't they force us to stop using all code SCO has even touched?
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