GNU License for Hardware

Derek J. Balling dredd at
Thu Oct 14 17:22:23 UTC 1999

At 12:46 PM 10/14/99 -0400, Matthew C. Weigel wrote:
>Yeah -- the SunOS kernel isn't free, so why should it be considered a GNU
>system?  ...Whereas Linux (the kernel) *is* free, and is considered part of
>the GNU system.  I don't think it should always be called GNU/Linux, in the
>case of, say, S.u.S.E or OpenLinux etc., but when you're talking about an
>operating environment that consists of the GNU system and a kernel licensed
>under the GNU license...

The only people (or to clarify, the FIRST person) who claimed Linux was 
"part of the GNU system" was RMS. Linus -- the principal author -- made no 
such claims and has in fact stated just the opposite. (You'll notice that 
even after being made fully aware of RMS's position, Linus does not use the 
abomination "GNU/Linux").

>I'm not sure I agree with it, but I *am* sure that GNU/Solaris is

It is the GNU system running Solaris kernel, just as RMS's claim that it is 
the GNU system running the Linux kernel. We're not talking quantum physics 

>Except that you can't create a GNU system with proprietary software, so
>until the SunOS kernel is free, it won't be a GNU system.

Linux doesn't try to be the GNU system either, despite RMS's claim to the 


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