#284 Documentation for Not Entirely Free Distributions

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opened 3 months ago by jfc · 11 comments
jfc commented 3 months ago

The Libreboot documentation includes guides to install not entirely free operating systems. OpenBSD, FreeBSD and NetBSD contain non-free firmware blobs. I do not know if LibertyBSD is 100% free either.

This is counter intuitive to the Libreboot and greater Free Software movements.

https://libreboot.org/docs/bsd

The GNU+Linux Documentation also references Arch Linux which is also not entirely free. Debian may not be FSF endorsed, but at very least it contains no blobs by default.

https://libreboot.org/docs/gnulinux

The Libreboot documentation includes guides to install not entirely free operating systems. OpenBSD, FreeBSD and NetBSD contain non-free firmware blobs. I do not know if LibertyBSD is 100% free either. This is counter intuitive to the Libreboot and greater Free Software movements. https://libreboot.org/docs/bsd The GNU+Linux Documentation also references Arch Linux which is also not entirely free. Debian may not be FSF endorsed, but at very least it contains no blobs by default. https://libreboot.org/docs/gnulinux
Swift Geek commented 3 months ago
Collaborator

but at very least it contains no blobs by default.

So is archlinux, the difference between them is that debian has separate non-free repository that is not enabled by default.

OpenBSD, FreeBSD and NetBSD contain non-free firmware blobs

I guess having some warning that puts emphasis on that would improve docs

>but at very least it contains no blobs by default. So is archlinux, the difference between them is that debian has separate non-free repository that is not enabled by default. >OpenBSD, FreeBSD and NetBSD contain non-free firmware blobs I guess having some warning that puts emphasis on that would improve docs
Andrew Robbins commented 3 months ago
Collaborator

The BSD documentation needs to be reworked in toto so those issues will be sorted out, hopefully before the next release.

The BSD documentation needs to be reworked *in toto* so those issues will be sorted out, hopefully before the next release.
jfc commented 3 months ago
Poster

So is archlinux, the difference between them is that debian has separate non-free repository that is not enabled by default.

Swift Geek, Arch Linux bundles non-free firmware with the kernel even in the default install. Debian on the other hand has no blobs by default.

>So is archlinux, the difference between them is that debian has separate non-free repository that is not enabled by default. Swift Geek, Arch Linux bundles non-free firmware with the kernel even in the default install. Debian on the other hand has no blobs by default.
Swift Geek commented 3 months ago
Collaborator

Archlinux has nothing at all by default, and blobs aren't even part of base group

Archlinux has nothing at all by default, and blobs aren't even part of base group
jfc commented 3 months ago
Poster

Archlinux has nothing at all by default, and blobs aren't even part of base group

My mistake, this is true for the base install. Blobs are pulled as dependencies or recommended for other packages however.

I think it makes more sense to only reference Parabola.

https://www.gnu.org/distros/common-distros.html

>Archlinux has nothing at all by default, and blobs aren't even part of base group My mistake, this is true for the base install. Blobs are pulled as dependencies or recommended for other packages however. I think it makes more sense to only reference Parabola. https://www.gnu.org/distros/common-distros.html
Swift Geek commented 3 months ago
Collaborator

Blobs are pulled as dependencies or recommended for other packages however.

Nope and not recommended, if you install blob you did it to yourself.

Parabola in comparison will actively prevent you from installing known blob packages, which makes it a preferred choice for newcomers, though parabola is way more than just free software - and that part doesn't make everyone comfortable (eg. artwork) https://wiki.parabola.nu/Parabola_Social_Contract

However if you spot place where arch is mentioned and parabola isn't - that's something to be reported and fixed.

>Blobs are pulled as dependencies or recommended for other packages however. Nope and not recommended, if you install blob you did it to yourself. Parabola in comparison will actively prevent you from installing known blob packages, which makes it a preferred choice for newcomers, though parabola is way more than just free software - and that part doesn't make everyone comfortable (eg. artwork) https://wiki.parabola.nu/Parabola_Social_Contract However if you spot place where arch is mentioned and parabola isn't - that's something to be reported and fixed.
jfc commented 3 months ago
Poster

OK, thanks Swift Geek. After a bit of further reading it appears you are correct.

OK, thanks Swift Geek. After a bit of further reading it appears you are correct.
Leah Rowe commented 3 months ago
Owner

Also of note, it's easy to migrate arch to parabola:

https://wiki.parabola.nu/Migration_from_the_GNU/Linux_distribution_of_Arch

The guide on libreboot.org mentions arch since parabola is based on Arch. AFAIK the guide also links to the Parabola migration guide. Merely mentioning Arch doesn't mean much, and the guide is written for Parabola specifically.

Also of note, it's easy to migrate arch to parabola: https://wiki.parabola.nu/Migration_from_the_GNU/Linux_distribution_of_Arch The guide on libreboot.org mentions arch since parabola is based on Arch. AFAIK the guide also links to the Parabola migration guide. Merely mentioning Arch doesn't mean much, and the guide is written for Parabola specifically.
zapper commented 2 months ago

Why has no one mentioned hyperbola?

That is a libre fork of arch with some things in common with parabola.

hyperbola.info

Devuan is libre if you set it up without non-free and contrib.

otherwise, no.

Although I greatly recommend putting linux-libre on it. :)

the lts version or the normal either is good. :)

Why has no one mentioned hyperbola? That is a libre fork of arch with some things in common with parabola. hyperbola.info Devuan is libre if you set it up without non-free and contrib. otherwise, no. Although I greatly recommend putting linux-libre on it. :) the lts version or the normal either is good. :)

TBH, I do believe that we need more Linux distros without systemd in the documentation. Perhaps we could include Gentoo?

TBH, I do believe that we need more Linux distros without systemd in the documentation. Perhaps we could include Gentoo?
Leah Rowe commented 1 month ago
Owner

Documenting BSD is necessary in this case, since otherwise there would be no documentation for how to use it. BSD is a free operating system, like GNU+Linux, when you look at all the major ones... notwithstanding some firmware blobs that some of them might distribute, but this is the same for GNU+Linux distributions and it's possible to remove those. Where possible, we recommend libre BSD distros such as LibertyBSD.

Of interest: those firmware blobs that are distributed by various BSD projects are not needed on Libreboot systems.

We don't tell people to use Arch either, we tell them how to migrate Arch over to Parabola. Arch is mentioned, so that people see that next to Parabola and correlate the two.

We do talk about some non-FSF-endorsed distros such as Debian or Devuan, but in my opinion this is fine since those are free by default unless you add the non-free repo.

I don't see what the problem is. We're not telling users to install any proprietary software.

I'm closing this issue, since I don't see what problem there is and neither does swiftgeek. Feel free to re-open if you think it's necessary.

Documenting BSD is necessary in this case, since otherwise there would be no documentation for how to use it. BSD is a free operating system, like GNU+Linux, when you look at all the major ones... notwithstanding some firmware blobs that some of them might distribute, but this is the same for GNU+Linux distributions and it's possible to remove those. Where possible, we recommend libre BSD distros such as LibertyBSD. Of interest: those firmware blobs that are distributed by various BSD projects are not needed on Libreboot systems. We don't tell people to use Arch either, we tell them how to migrate Arch over to Parabola. Arch is mentioned, so that people see that next to Parabola and correlate the two. We do talk about some non-FSF-endorsed distros such as Debian or Devuan, but in my opinion this is fine since those are free by default unless you add the non-free repo. I don't see what the problem is. We're not telling users to install any proprietary software. I'm closing this issue, since I don't see what problem there is and neither does swiftgeek. Feel free to re-open if you think it's necessary.
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