Nvidia Licensing Question
rootman22 at comcast.net
Sun Jul 20 12:15:10 PDT 2003
I didn't think it had anything to do with licensing but
I wanted to hear it from the horses mouth, so to speak.
Thanks for the explanantion.
On Sunday 20 July 2003 12:01 pm, Bill Paul wrote:
> > Hi,
> > I was talking to someone recently about why there isn't
> > support for Nvidia's Nforce drivers under FreeBSD yet.
> > He said:
> > "This might have something to do with the fact that the NIC driver is not
> > GPL licensed. See the "License" section of the nForce Linux readme:
> It has nothing to do with licensing. The NIC driver is _NOT_ provided
> in source code form. Yes, they may have stuck it in a section that
> says 'driver source code,' but if you actually download it and look
> at it, you'll find that all of the brains of the driver is inside an
> object module for which there is no source code.
> If the driver source code was available, then one of two things would
> - We would discover that the chip is in fact not nVidia's own design,
> but a some other vendor's design which they have licensed (this is
> what they did previously, when they licensed a NIC from 3Com). If
> this turned out to be the case, and the NIC is already supported
> by another FreeBSD driver, we could tweak it to handle nVidia's
> - We would be able to strip out all of the register and DMA structure
> info from the Linux driver and write a FreeBSD driver (assuming the
> engineer who wrote the driver didn't try to obfuscate the code or
> was lazy about transcribing register info from the programming
> I would prefer being able to just get the programming manual from
> nVidia and write a driver from scratch, but I don't have any nVidia
> contacts or any info about why nVidia is being such a pain in the
> ass about releasing info concerning this NIC.
>== -Bill Paul (510) 749-2329 | Senior Engineer, Master of Unix-Fu
> wpaul at windriver.com | Wind River Systems
>== "If stupidity were a handicap, you'd have the best parking spot."
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