Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Novell bans proprietary Linux modules

Filed under

In a change of heart, Novell has ceased distributing proprietary software modules such as 3D video drivers that plug into the Linux kernel.

The change came with Novell's Suse Linux Enterprise Server 10, released in July. With the move, Novell is aligning itself with the Free Software Foundation, which shuns proprietary software in general but in particular loathes proprietary modules that run as a component of the open-source Linux kernel.

The Linux kernel comes with numerous open-source modules that handle everything from storing files on hard drives to communicating with networks. However, a few companies offer proprietary modules that let Linux communicate with various hardware devices. Among the most widely used proprietary modules are video card drivers that provide 3D graphics support.

Although customers can still install proprietary modules on their own, Novell's ban reflects a new balance between the open-source and proprietary realms. The Linux kernel is governed by the General Public License (GPL), written initially by Free Software Foundation founder Richard Stallman and now being modernized.

Full Story.

More in Tux Machines

FOSS Security

  • European Parliament votes to extend Free Software security audits
    Remember how I raised €1 million to demonstrate security and freedom aren’t opposites? Well here’s what happened next and how we are going to move forward with this. In 2014, two major security vulnerabilities, Heartbleed and Shellshock, were discovered. Both concerned Free Software projects that are widely used throughout the Internet, on computers, tablets, and smartphones alike. My colleague Max Andersson from the Swedish Greens and I proposed a so-called “pilot project”, the Free and Open Source Software Audit (FOSSA).
  • Princeton Upskills U on Open Source Security
    During Wednesday's Upskill U course, lecturer Gary Sockrider, principal security technologist for Arbor Networks , explained the history of DDoS attacks, case studies of recent attacks, and the business impact of these security threats. DDoS attacks not only raise operational expenses, but can also negatively affect an organization's brand, and result in loss of revenue and customers. (Listen to Security: Tackling DDoS.) "Having visibility is key, you can't stop something you can't see. Having good visibility across your own network is vital in finding and stopping these attacks," said Sockrider. "You can leverage common tools and technology that are already available on the network equipment you own today such as flow technologies, looking at SIP logs … Obviously you'll want to get to some specific intelligent DDoS mitigation in the end."

Android Leftovers

Linux Mint 18.1 Slated to Launch Later This Year, Will Be Codenamed “Serena”

Just a few minutes ago, Linux Mint project leader Clement Lefebvre announced the codename of the next Linux Mint release, versioned 18.1, along with a bit of information regarding its release date and upgrade possibility from previous versions. Read more

Ubuntu 17.04 "Zesty Zapus" Now Tracks Linux Kernel 4.9, Could Ship Kernel 4.10

On October 27, 2016, Joseph Salisbury from the Ubuntu Kernel Team has published yet another newsletter to keep Ubuntu Linux users in the loop with what Canonical is planning for the upcoming Ubuntu 17.04 operating system. Read more