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Some of you may recognize me as having started a similarly themed thread
<http://lists.apple.com/archives/Darwin-dev/2005/Jun/msg00136.html> a year
ago. Well, today, I was looking for the source code to the 10.4.x linker on
Intel. So I went to the <http://darwinsource.opendarwin.org> website, fully
expecting to look at the cctools sources and see what differences in
behavior to expect between Intel and ppc. I expected the linker sources to
be available, because they have always been available, and because cctools
contains the assembler which is based on GNU as, and thus under the terms of
I was amazed to find that the gas sources had been split out of cctools, so
they could be provided in accordance with the GPL, but no other part of
cctools was made available. So I never did get an answer to my question.
I assume that the idea is to limit the source code availability to those who
are attempting to steal Mac OS X and use it on systems not built or approved
by Apple. I can understand and applaud the goal, but not the methods.
By limiting published source code to that which is "infected" by the GPL,
Apple is, in my honest opinion, scoring an own goal.
Let me give some examples. Without cctools source code, Shantonu Sen's
wonderful odcctools project will die. Nobody will be able to build a to
darwin gcc cross compiler anymore.
Now, those are only things that I know about/can remember right now, I'm
sure that there are many other examples. I guess that kext developers will
now have a significantly harder time when something makes them say "wtf!"
there will be no sources to check.
It's not only very sad, it is quite unnecessary to have such a blanket ban
on publishing source code. Userland sources that come from *BSD should be
published, as should projects like perl, python that have relaxed licensing,
but in no way affect anyones ability to run Mac OS X on their Dell. If
possible, I'd advocate publishing obfuscated kernel sources too.
This means that the source code that Apple used to publish and allow people
to browse, in the main, comes from opensource projects. While many project's
licences do not require that changes be sent back or source code published,
I think it only fair play.
Thanks for listening,
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