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Wine Software

Two Helpings of WINE 210

Mister Snee writes: "As of the latest WINE release, the developer who's been working on the ActiveMovie and DirectShow code for the last nine months suddenly pulled it all from the source tree, citing fears of trouble under the DMCA." And an anonymous reader submits: "TransGaming Tecnologies is offering much of its own proprietary code up for exchange if Codeweavers are willing to relicense some of their code under the less restrictive (more free) X11 licence (eg contributing it to the X11 fork of wine, Rewind). Details can be found at this post by CEO Gavriel State. This all came from the Codeweavers-dominated recent licence change (to the LGPL) which was done in an attempt to steal TransGaming's Direct3D code and force them to open up all their work (thus have no means to make money)." Your attitude toward these license machinations may vary; Codeweavers seems unlikely to oppose people making money from WINE development.
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Two Helpings of WINE

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  • wine confusion (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Drunken_Jackass ( 325938 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @09:24AM (#3501845) Homepage
    Someone should start naming their wine distributions - Burgundy, Pino Grigio, etc. So i can tell who the hell is contributing to what!
    • heh. How about beer names for the distros. The Wine names you are giving are for white-colar folks. I prefer stuff like Coors, Miller, and Colt45. Just my $.02
      • I prefer stuff like Coors, Miller, and Colt45

        You ought to try some real beers. They even have better names. Wychwood's Hobgoblin, CircleMaster and Back Witch would be a good place to start.

      • I prefer stuff like Coors, Miller, and Colt45.

        That stuff's bilgewater, not beer. I can make better beer than that (just bottled 5 gallons of a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale clone two weeks ago...haven't had any of it yet because it hasn't settled out, but the two batches (one pale ale, one amber ale) before it turned out pretty well).

        Pale, fizzy beer is for wussies. []

  • by GauteL ( 29207 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @09:27AM (#3501853)
    "which was done in an attempt to steal TransGaming's Direct3D code and force them to open up all their work (thus have no means to make money)."

    The licensing change was made because the Wine-project didn't really want "leeches". That is, companies using their work, without contributing back. This has NOTHING whatsoever to do with stealing.

    If this hurts TransGaming, then that is their problem, not the Wine-projects.

    PS! I actually like WineX, and I am a subscriber, but they have no universial right to use all the work of the Wine-project unless the contributors think that is ok (stated with a license). If they succeed in "swapping code" that is ok. Bitching about not being able to use LGPL-code, is not.
    • If they succeed in "swapping code" that is ok. Bitching about not being able to use LGPL-code, is not.

      Some might argue that changing the licensing of the project after a couple of years of development, because the developers didn't think things through when they began, is not OK either.

      • by Anonymous Coward
        Why not? That code was mit X11 like. They can do whatever with the code they want. When people use BSD like license, they just don't know what they have given up. Now those who contribute to Wine feels the pain and did something.
        • When people use BSD like license, they just don't know what they have given up.

          Really? How can they possibly not know? It seems quite obvious, from reading the license, what a developer would be giving up.

          • This is EXACTLY what one of the articles the other day was about. GPL is about GPL everything because GNU/Jeebus says to. BSD is about wanting your project to take life after you release it with no other restrictions than to let others know where it came from (I believe the BSD is the one that RMS hated because he didn't consider it free because it required copyright statements to be left in...though every damn GPL software has to have copyrights left in...but they refer to his religion...)

            I've released software over the years that I had no more use out of...I sometimes release them GPL other time just say hell with it and put it into the public license, do what the hell ya want with it. BSD allows you to take something and GPL the results under a second license, so as a programmer, you could have easily forked it and set up your own GPL/BSD version of the software with your own team (though it sounds like Wine beat ya to the punch).

            Some of us care only for getting software out...we don't care about if someone is proffiting off of it 'unfairly'. We care that someone is using it...

            • Heh! I generally don't respond to my own posts like this, but it was funny that some fucking moron modded the parent to flamebait.

              It just proves to me that most /.rs are just immature children, most of whom have never coded for a living nor understand that anyone needs to make a living. Its all gimme gimme gimme and the GPL helps out in that regard. You could give a fuck about sharing with others...if it weren't for the GPL, you'd be out pirating anyways.

              If you want flamebait, this is it...not that I don't consider all of this true.

              Ok, kiddies...I am giving you yet another post to mod down. I have PLENTY of karma and have been around here longer than most. Too bad I still don't have my old 4 digit UID.
      • by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @09:58AM (#3501923) Homepage Journal
        The licence change is not retroactive, what they're doing is saying "subsequent changes will be covered by the LGPL, we can't do anything about earlier code, even if we wanted to."

        TransGaming is whining that it can't use (within their prefered business model) the efforts of those programmers currently working on the project. So this isn't a simple case of changing the licencing of the project after two years, it's a case of the current code having a licence reflecting what the current programmers want.

        In my view, TransGaming still has plenty of options: write the damned modifications to WINE made since new changes were covered by the new licence itself, negotiate a new licence with the programmers who have made the changes, or go with the flow. Anything else looks like the spoiled kid who takes his ball away.

        • > TransGaming still has plenty of options: [...] negotiate a new licence with the programmers who have made the changes

          Which is what they are trying to do. I notice the linked post doesn't say anything about "stealing" code, that's just the story submitter.
      • Some might argue that changing the licensing after a couple of years ... is not OK either.

        How can you argue that TransGaming's proprietary fork is okay, but proceeding with the LGPL is not? You can't have it both ways. WINE is not some corporate charity, so the developers chose a license they're more comfortable with.

        TransGaming leveraged a million lines of code, the result of almost ten years of development, in the development of its proprietary WineX product. Now TransGaming wants to trade some of its code for LGPLed code. I can forgive some WINE developers for feeling like TransGaming hasn't made good on its previous trade. Alexandre summarized the WINE sentiment as follows:

        What you are doing is you come to the party, you eat and drink from what others have brought, but when people want some of your stuff you charge them for it. And when they complain you ask them to start charging for their stuff too, and transform the party into a shopping mall.
        That said, if swapping code improves WINE, I'm all for it. In fact, it validates the decision to go LGPL.
    • by xer.xes ( 4181 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @10:24AM (#3501966)
      Maybe we can mod the story itself to -1 :).

      Of course most of the stories here on slashdot are kind of biased (towards open software), but this one is really bad (and in the wrong (non-open) direction this time).

      Who says you can't make money with open software? Ximian does it, Codeweavers (with *tada* Wine) does it, Eazel did it (they spend more than they made however :)), I do it, lots of other people do it!
      • Codeweavers (with *tada* Wine) does it

        Cool. Where can I download the source to the Wine / Netscape Plugin API link? Oh wait, I can't. Codeweavers make great products, fund Open Source, and give much of their work back to Wine. But not all of it, and they certainly don't do it from selling Open Source software. Ximian, I doubt, is even profitable.
      • Yeah, I've noticed Taco going that direction lately also. The most recent case being when in synical gesturing equated KDE and Gnome to Windows as examples of Browsers integrated into Operating systems. There was a time when he was smarter than to call KDE and Gnome an operating system.

        I think it started a long time ago when he wanted to get his Scanner working with Linux (for scanning Anime Cells I think.) After some attempts to get it to work, he found out that his only hope was being thwarted by a bunch of well meaning but rude OSS extortion emailers who were badgering the scanner company.

        Since then, he's taken an increasingly squinty-eyed view at the OSS audience as those same few have tried to thwart, maim and destroy his creation. A creation that ironicaly was made for "open" audience participation. Their efforts of late have gotten more desperate, paranoid, and rampant.

        Add to that RMS requiring Taco to call this site GNU/Slashdot and where can you turn? Back to the comfortable world where all this mess was closed and swept under the carpet. Customers didn't interact with the products becuase producers didn't care to listen anyway. No shouting, complaining, or moaning to be heard. What a peaceful world that must seem these days to this abused open-source hero.

        So Codeweavers moves to a liscence that definately effects a competing(?) company in an adverse way, with more squabbling and name calling. Its understandable to see why Taco would identify more with the people being screwed with than the people wanting fairness.

        Such is the curiously misapplied "free as in ${yada}" debate that really makes for fodder for corporate comic strips, confusion/derision for Joe Sixpack, and fuel for end-users who think Open Source means the best contribution they can make is as a manager and not a programmer.
        • Hunh? This one wandered down the path and fell off the ledge. Slashdot is a great example of the piece of human nature that makes us want to be in send mode more than receive. The story that I READ equating KDE and Gnome to Windows was related to testimony offered by a M$ funded long hair who did not know his butt from a hole in the ground. He equated the three and backed off under direct questioning. I believe that the slashdotter who posted the story made sport of the long hair (I believe Elzinga was his name, maybe not).

          Bottom line, read the story, read the posts, engage your brain, then respond if you have something to contribute. Carping at the slashdot team is fun, but not relevant to this story.
          • Slashdot is a great example of the piece of human nature that makes us want to be in send mode more than receive.

            True, and in interesting point. I think that encapsulates one side of the token of much of what I was saying. The downside is people like you describe in your post although we might not agree on whether that describes me or not.

            The slashdotter's responce you refer to was not as interesting as Taco's who said "Basically he doesn't understand what GNOME and KDE are, and since we're all holier-than-thou know-it-alls around here, we might as well laugh at Microsoft's expense ;)".

            Note the tone of disdain towards the community, although this doesn't go as far as to equate KDE and Gnome as OS's as I said before. Few have the perspective of the OS mob that Taco does, and comparing and contrasting his views with Rusty's always makes for interesting discussion.

            But back to the point, in essence I'm not carping on the Slashdot team. Its unfortunate that you take it that way. In fact, I'm agreeing with their sentiment. Most of Open Source is a wonderful thing, used as an example of cooperative economies and the future of progressive movements by David Brin and others.

            But without self-policing becomes a socially devalued rant by people who want to be Open Source Managers but not Open Source Programmers.

            So as my parting shot, I invite you to look beyond the fashionably defined lines of Open Source combat to see a very interesting evolutionary process, and the roles people have and will play in them.
    • If they wanted to do that, then LGPL wasn't the best idea. One of the other proposed licences was a time-delayed GPL, which IMHO would have been much better. Basically, a developer could use all the wine code, as long as they released their additions within a certain amount of time. That way developers like transgaming could still make money from it, but had to give back their code in the end. What was wrong with that?
    • The LGPL does not prevent proprietary additions the way the GPL does. They can be static linked, too. So it would not do anything to the Direct3D work. And the "stealing" claim is entirely specious.

      If the WINE team wants to avoid leeches, they need some more license consultation.


      • Your right in a way the LGPL allows you to add proprietary additions in a way. If you modify the LGPL code then you have to release the modifications (same as the GPL) but if you add extra functionality without changing the code then the bit you add you can linces as you want. If you have to modify the LGPL code to add you functionality then you have to release the parts you midified but not the extra parts you added unless the parts you added are required by the parts you modified. Obviously the community might not add the code you changed to the code base if
        it doesn't fix any problems and is only usefull for your proprietry libaries.

        It doesn't do anything about the "Direct3D work" but it does mean that people can't take the LGPL code base fix bugs and then sell it without releasing the code.

        What it doesn't stop is someone comming along adding say DirrectX 9 support that is clearly seperate from the original code but requires wine. (you still have the changing API problems as wine is updated sine the code isn't in the common code base it must be updated speratly)

    • I agree that the author of this article seems to be a more than a bit slanted. I happen to agree that the change to LGPL is a good thing since I don't see Lindows contributing back and that is a bad thing for the Wine project.

      Yes the GPL/LGPL is almost a religion, but I beleive that it's the right of all computer users to not be forced into software serfdon to a single vendor. The GPL & LGPL does this where the X11 and BSD licences don't ensure this. Both allow fot the Microsoftesque embrade & extend which is a very bad thing.

      I don't think there is anything wrong with Transgaming wanting to swap code with the Wine group. Both sides gain from the trade.

    • WineX DOES contribute back. They contribute back after YOU contribute to them by subscribing.

      Do you honestly think development is free? Unlike Codeweavers, Transgaming doesnt have unlimited cash to fund development.

      Transgaming develops shouldnt be forced to release all their code until theres enough subscribers to pay for development of new code. IF you want to force them to release all their code, what you are doing is putting them out of business.

      CodeWeavers is doing this to kill the competition. They also are trying to get rid of Lindows. This is obvious from anyone on the outside.

      Swapping code is what should be done, I dont think transgaming has complained about not being able to use LGPL code, they complain that CodeWeavers switched the license in an attempt to put them out of business.

      THAT is believeable.

      CodeWeavers is on the side of CodeWeavers, Lindows and Transgaming care more about Wine.

      If CodeWeavers cared about Wine they would do whats best for the Wine users, and thats to have as much code completed as possible under ANY license. I support the GPL, but I want games to work in Wine, and I am subscribed to transgaming, why ruin Transgaming?! They have done ALOT!!!

      Codeweavers has done alot, but why should I be forced to pick sides? They should be working together.

      Lindows is new in this, but give them a chance.

      The License Change was a strategic attack.
  • They're wrapping an API around some existing binary code for the MPlayer stuff, aren't they? Hence the reason it only works on the processor architecture that Windows Media Player works on. This is hardly a copyright issue, or an encryption issue is it? If the writers of the code they're wrapping hteir API around are bothered about it, it's just like, say, Microsoft being bothered about you using alternative software to read a word document, or something equally silly. Hmmm... come to think of it, they probably would be bothred by that!
    • Re:DMCA? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by DustMagnet ( 453493 )
      I'm just guessing, but I think that this has something to do with Microsoft's Digital Rights Management. The author says, "and there are some other reasons I don't want to write... "

      What would be the problem he can't mention? I think the problem he found is an hole in mplayer's DRM. Just recently Microsoft argued before the courts that releasing a full API would let people do bad things [].

      Real Media has had this problem for a while. Of course if Microsoft wrote code more professionally this wouldn't be a problem.

      • So why not publish the offending source code on a page not accessible to US citizens, and let the rest of the world play with it? We don't have DMCA, yet somehow we still have to abide by it?
        • Maybe because the Internet interpret censorship and routes around it, thus pretty much assuring that some non-American with access to the page would immediately mirror it on a webserver that didn't restrict American access. The original author is still the original author and thus must fear for his life if his code is out there.
      • I will document this example for Rep. Boucher as an example of the chilling effect of DMCA.


        • Wow. A celebrity on Slashdot.
        • Go Bruce! Until you came out here to Utah and talked to the local LUG I thought you were just an overinflated ego with few social skills. I found out that, instead, you have a good reason to have an ego and can make geeks laugh a lot.

          Go Bruce!

          No, I'm not trying to kiss up, but after seeing his presentation in Logan, I realized Mr. Perens is one guy who has the time, talent, motivation, and POSITION to help destroy software patents and the DMCA. Other people (*cough* Linus *cough*) don't give a damn as long as you can play with code...
  • I have to add a copy to my "suppressed" directory tree. This is just what the WINE project needs. A fork to a non-U.S. (and probably non-E.U., eventually) nation brought on by the mere implied threat of legal action from evil "intellectual" "property" barons.

  • Someone at Redmond has a satisfactory smile on his face ...

  • by Performer Guy ( 69820 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @09:45AM (#3501894)
    How can someone pull the code like this? There must be a copy, heck it might even remain in the cvs database, put it back in there, and if the project leads don't want it in then fork the project. This is exactly why we like the license the way it is, so this sort of thing can't be done unilaterally to a project you rely on.
    • There's something to be said, however, for respect of the original coder's wishes, in the open source community.
    • Most of the code is probably in the last tarball (20020411) the diff to 20020509 contains the changes (in a reversible form), so it's sufficient to pull the latest diff (especially if you have the latest sources), and do a 'patch -fR -p1' with it to get the 'dlls/quartz' dir which probably contains most of the pulled code. Then you can also draw source-rpms before 20020509. Maybe you can also roll back the CVS-tree (didn't look). The code is still all over the place. Since it's GPL it should be (standard IANAL disclaimer) no problem to pick it up from the original author.

      But then there is the question if one should really ignore the authors wishes in that way (OTOH, if you contact him privately, maybe he agrees that development of his work should go on, and feels safe enough from litigation having made the effort to pull the code). The main problem is though: The code will probably become worthless over time if not maintained, so it is not enough to simply put the code back, but there also needs to be someone to maintain and develop it (and take the same risk as the original author to be sued).
  • LGPL. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by saintlupus ( 227599 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @09:47AM (#3501902) Homepage
    This all came from the Codeweavers-dominated recent licence change (to the LGPL) which was done in an attempt to steal TransGaming's Direct3D code and force them to open up all their work (thus have no means to make money).

    Now, I'm not license ninja like some of the people on here, but I thought the whole _point_ of the LGPL was that it could be linked to or used without the linking source having to be opened. I was under the impression that was the main difference between the LGPL (Lesser?) and the regular one.

    Anyone care to correct me, please?

    • yeah but in this case the folks at transgaming want library in question to be closed, where you are talking about the binary, linking to a library, being closed. lgpl and gpl stuff cannot link to closed binaries i believe. so the rest of wine cannot use the transgaming stuff unless they release it under a different license.
    • Re:LGPL. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Bruce Perens ( 3872 ) <> on Saturday May 11, 2002 @11:47AM (#3502229) Homepage Journal
      Yes, you are correct. The entire premse of the story is bogus, LGPL would do nothing to hinder proprietary additions.


      • Re:LGPL. (Score:3, Informative)

        by Laven ( 102436 )
        One of Transgaming's primary reasons for their inability to use the LGPL is because of their copy protection code. They say that it would violate the DMCA if it were released, and it touches so many places of the Wine code that it would be extremely difficult to cleanly seperate into another library.

        I personally support Open Source, but it seems that the problem here is the stupid US law and not entirely Transgaming.

        What about this case?
  • "This all came from the Codeweavers-dominated recent licence change (to the LGPL) which was done in an attempt to steal TransGaming's Direct3D code and force them to open up all their work (thus have no means to make money)."

    Wait a if you open up your entire source, you can no longer make money ?
    • exactly... (Score:4, Funny)

      by gimpboy ( 34912 ) <(john.m.harrold) (at) (> on Saturday May 11, 2002 @10:12AM (#3501939) Homepage
      i'm going to send the folks at codeweavers a letter requesting my money back for the crossover plugin.

    • Lets look at what they were doing. Ill show you examples!

      Codeweavers is not a team player. They were the ones who pulled out of their partnership with Lindows.

      When Transgaming started making WineX, CodeWeavers got on them to release the code, they also got on Lindows to release the code. However both of these commpanies do not have a business plan where the code can be released immediately, during this time Wine was under a license which allowed this.

      CodeWeavers got mad that they couldnt use the WineX and Lindows code to sell their products, but WineX and Lindows could use theirs.

      Their solution, was to get the license changed. Instead of working WITH transgaming and lindows, from the start codeweavers has seen these two companies as enemies.

      If Wine is what you care about, why does it matter if other companies use your wine code? its better for Wine, its just not good for your business.

      So you see, this was a strategic business attack from code weavers, forking Wine allows them to now get all the code produced by Transgaming and Lindows to add to their products.

      BUT YOU DONT see Transgaming or Lindows whining and complaining about this because these companies unless CodeWeavers have an actual business plan!

      Look, if we are to be successful as open source, our businesses should work together. Lindows and Transgaming are doing this, try both TRIED to work with Codeweavers who refused and caused both companies to have to spend more on development attacking both of their businesses.

      I predict code weavers will be the first to go out of business because they dont work with the team.
  • WINE == DEAD END? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by JohnBE ( 411964 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @10:17AM (#3501946) Homepage Journal
    It seems to me that all we'll ever be able to run on Wine is old Windows applications. Any cutting edge applications will not run unless the said app. maintains strict adherence to a old proprietary standard. This means that Wine will always be one step back.

    Virtual Machines such as Bochs and VM-Ware will eventually be the only choice for running x86 applications.

    Incedently VMWare and Bochs are not new concepts. SCO have had something called Merge [] for ages, which has allowed people to run Windows on Openserver for years now and more recently allowed Unixware users to do the same.

    Wine's forking is a desperately sad attempt to remain as near to the cutting edge in legally grey DMCA infested waters. Virtual Machines and emulators are the way to go, DMCA be dammned.
    • I don't know that it's necessarily a dead end, just because the cutting edge apps aren't running from Day 1. I have been very interested (and impressed) by the efforts of companies like both CodeWeavers and Transgaming to use this codebase to produce products that allow people to run common Windows apps under Linux. In particular (sorry if this sounds like an ad), CrossOver office is very impressive.

      Unfortunately, there are a lot of office documents out there, and if we're going to see more linux desktops (the need for which is a separate argument, not taken up here), people will need to be able to read and save documents in those formats. CrossOver Office allows you to do that very well for Office 97 and 2000. The fact that it doesn't support Office XP isn't too big a deal in my book, at elast from a business perspective. Office compatibility issues exist even at companies that are primarily Windows shops. I work for a major cable shopping channel (yes, that one), and we're still running NT4 and using Office 97. Our case is a bit extreme, but the fact remains that large companies simply aren't able to deploy the latest versions of Microsoft's office tools as soon as they come out. In fact, it's downright bad practice to deploy any Microsoft software in a business environment until a Service Pack or two is released (and many -myself included- would say I should have stopped that sentence after the word 'environment'). If WINE and projects based on it are even able to stay consistently one generation behind in their support for Office and such apps (and I think they'll do much better than that), they will have successfully addressed a major issue with getting companies to migrate from Windows to Linux. Of course, this doesn't help the home user who wants to be able to get at Office XP documents or play the latest games today, but we linux folks are a bunch of do-it-yourselfers anyway. That's why the source is available :)

      I just hope that folks at both companies (and any that should follow suit later) can keep sight of the bigger picture and not kill the project with petty licensing squabbles. There must be some way to remain commercially viable *and* return code to the WINE project. It'll be interesting to see how this all shakes out.
      • The only advantage of WINE that I can see is the performance. Most virtual machines have a performance hit. A virtual machine emulating say a PC or Amiga will be machine code compatible with the underlying OS of the program you want to run.

        Another point is that with you example for instance you could run your existing setup, Windows NT4 as well in a Window on a Linux desktop. No retraining, just click your box and your old desktop is available.
        • Fair enough. I'd be lying if I said I could give you anything resembling an intelligent discussion on the pros and cons of virtual machines (actually, if you could point me to some good reading material on virtual machines, I'd appreciate it). From what you say, it definitely sounds like a robust virtual machine would be a superior approach to a bunch of different applications emulating different parts of the Win32 API to do what they need to do. I just think that WINE currently allows a fair amount of people to get most of what they really need to do done on a day-to-day basis.

          I like your idea of popping up a window with NT4 on a linux desktop, though I can just see the scenario that would lead to it.

          IT dept: Hey, we're upgrading to Linux. Here's a machine with KDE, it's a desktop environment that is similar to the Windows environment you've been using.

          Users: But, it looks all different and stuff. Where's the "Start" button? What's that stuff in the taskbar? Where's Internet Explorer.

          IT Dept: Oh, that's no big deal, just click the "K". You can use Konqueror inst...

          Users (interrupting): This is too hard. It's too different. I don't have time for this.

          IT Dept: Well, if you'd like, we've given you the option of opening a window to run NT4 while we make the transition. Here, click this.

          Users: Ah, that's better.

          IT Dept: So, you can use this to do things that cause you trouble, while you're learning the new applications that we have on Linux. See, Linux offers us a number of advantages, such as...

          Users (interrupting again): Can you make the NT4 window come up in fullscreen mode?

          IT Dept:

          Of course, maybe the fact that I'm at work right now enhancing pefrectly good software for these same users has colored my opinion of them a bit :)
          • "Start" vs. "K" (Score:5, Interesting)

            by autechre ( 121980 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @12:03PM (#3502285) Homepage
            I work for a university newspaper , and we had some old machines (P-90, 16M RAM) that just wouldn't run Win98 usably. So I decided to make them into X-terminals, since the fileserver (running Samba and netatalk) wasn't really being pushed.

            Everything was set up, worked fine. But I only got a few people to use it. I made a big poster with a screenshot of the desktop and hung it right above the machines, but still, little use compared to the Windows machines next to them. People would actually _wait_ to use the Windows machines.

            That's when I switched from KDE to icewm. I made icewm have the most Windows-like look possible, giving it a "Start" menu instead of "K." I also put 4 shortcuts on the taskbar next to the Start menu (like Win98) for StarOffice, Netscape, GAIM, and a script that connects them to their PINE email. Then I created a _background_ with arrows pointing to things and descriptions (before, people would just not look up and see the poster). Now I see them being used all the time.

            Another thing about a place like this is that the (student) staff changes fairly regularly, and so the new people are more likely to use the Linux machines (though still only if the Windows ones are all taken).

            • Re:"Start" vs. "K" (Score:3, Insightful)

              by _|()|\| ( 159991 )
              I made icewm have the most Windows-like look possible

              It sounds stupid, but retraining can be painful for a "power user." I have a Windows setup that works for me. I put the task bar on top, set to autohide. I rename frequently used Start menu items so I can quickly select them with the keyboard: "1 Windows Explorer," "2 cygwin bash," "3 Word," etc. I frequently use the <Windows>-m shortcut to minimize all windows.

              It has taken a while, but I've gotten more comfortable with sawfish under GNOME. When I finally had a weekend to play around, I discovered that the panel doesn't have to be a monstrosity at the bottom of the screen, and I rearranged the applets. I mapped some familiar shortcuts to the Windows key. However, the GNOME menu doesn't appear to support first-character discrimination, making it useless for keyboard navigation.

              Despite some effort, I am still more comfortable (I hesitate to use the word "productive") under Windows. Eventually, I'll learn GNOME-isms that I miss under Windows. In fact, I'm already pretty attached to Galeon.

              I commend your effort to make the workstations more usable, even if making them more Windows like may have felt like a regression.

    • You are not supposed to keep on cutting edge while running your apps on wine. It is meant to be a possibility to keep your existing software when migrating to a *nix OS.
      • Understood, but what if your existing software is cutting edge?

        I would argue that a Virtual Machine solves any problems because it emulates hardware as opposed to software. Therefore if the said software (say XP or even Plan 9) is compatible with the hardware, there shouldn't be any problems.
        • by Ozan ( 176854 )
          Understood, but what if your existing software is cutting edge?
          Easy thing: stay on windows. Don't force yourself on a certain system because it is hip. Be professional. If you need linux software, use them on a VM.
          • Does a Windows system forceyou to upgrade to the latest Windows system by only making critical fixes in the next version? Besides I would argue a totally neutral OS policy is best.
    • It seems to me that all we'll ever be able to run on Wine is old Windows applications. Any cutting edge applications will not run unless the said app. maintains strict adherence to a old proprietary standard. This means that Wine will always be one step back.

      And don't forget that so far, we can't even run old Windows applications using Wine. We're how many years on and I still can't run MS Office 95 or 97 with the latest Wine release, much less Internet Explorer or Photoshop. The recent popularity of the "screw native Linux software, all we need is Wine" mentality is very troubling.

      Incedently VMWare and Bochs are not new concepts. SCO have had something called Merge [] for ages, which has allowed people to run Windows on Openserver for years now and more recently allowed Unixware users to do the same.

      By the way, you can also get Merge for Linux. It's used as the guts of the very popular (and cheaper and faster than VMWare) Win4Lin [].
    • Virtual Machines such as Bochs and VM-Ware will eventually be the only choice for running x86 applications.

      Isn't VM-ware an x86 application :)

      Reminds me of the famous scientist who was informed that the world was a plate on a giant tortoise. What was the tortoise standing on? Another tortoise...

    • "Office 97"

      99% of the world would not have switched from Office 97 unless MS beat them with a stick (like Access 2K's penchant for converting Access 97 databases to a new format without the user's permission; now fixed in Office XP).

      • Yes, the version incompatibilities add to the end-users decision process. I disagree with the figure of 99% of users wouldn't of changed.

        Do not forget the sales and marketing clout of Microsoft. Many companies buy on the basis that they are told that they need an upgrade or that they beleive the upgrade has a cost benefit over the previous version. Microsoft salespeople are as much responsible for this as end-user worries about version incompatibilities.
  • by rknop ( 240417 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @10:20AM (#3501952) Homepage

    This all came from the Codeweavers-dominated recent licence change (to the LGPL) which was done in an attempt to steal TransGaming's Direct3D code and force them to open up all their work (thus have no means to make money).

    <Dripping Sarcasm>
    Oh, very well put.
    </Dripping Sarcasm>

    I don't even know what's going on and I can tell that this is absolutely nothing but a ham-handed attempt to push forward a view of the GPL and LGPL (and/or of Codeweavers) and blame it for things for which it no more responsibility than it does for the crisis in the Middle Eeast.

    Licence changes of open code only affect future versions. If an earlier version was out under a different licence you liked better-- fork from there! That's what gave us OpenSSH. It was forked from the last "open enough" version of ssh. Similarly with TuxRacer; it's gone commercial, but the earlier GPLed versions are still GPLed, and nothings to stop anybody from further development of them.

    What's more, even if you change your future versions of code, you can't "steal" somebody else's code which uses an older version. The current ssh is under a more restrictive licence... but OpenSSH doesn't have anything to worry about using the older ssh code. Similarly for TuxRacer; if somebody else writes a GPLed extention to it, the proprietary version can't "steal" it simply because it's connected to an earlier version of code that the proprietary version grew out of. (And vice versa. Developers of the GPLed version aren't "stealing" the proprietary code, or preventing it from being sold, by building on the earlier version.)

    This statement is little better than Microsoft FUD, and comes across as far less slick than it. If there really is some beef or ethical problem with what Codeweavers has done, I don't know. If there is, it needs to be stated much better than this. This statement here only makes me believe that the poster is a whiner with strong opinions about the GPL that aren't actually based in fact.


    • The LGPL does not prevent proprietary software. It doesn't even prevent it from being static-linked! It doesn't prevent anyone from making their money. It doesn't prevent them from implementing closed DRM schemes. The whole premise of the story is invalid. here!


    • Slashdot's biased, there's no question about that. I personally first heard about this several months ago when Jeremy White, the CEO of CodeWeavers, had a presentation on Wine at the Twin Cities LUG. That was before the license change happened. He mentioned it, and said that they were discussing a license change because a lot of people were very disappointed in the behavior of people at TransGaming.

      Basically, a lot of people felt that TransGaming had stolen their work. I believe WineX had been a more open project and TransGaming had closed it up without much warning, but I only know what people told me..

      Anyway, I think Mr. White's conclusion was that he didn't like what happened, but it was permissible under the license. Enough people were annoyed that a license change happened.

      But now, people are saying that this stuff was stolen away from TransGaming? I just find that hard to swallow.

      Admittedly, I'm a much bigger fan of GPL/LGPL than other licenses, as I would rather that my code stay in the open rather than get pulled into proprietary packages. Also, I believe GPL/LGPL reduces the problem of project forking. Who knows what would have happened if Wine hadn't been under the X11 license? I suppose Corel wouldn't have worked on it much.. Hard to say..
    • It's a bit worse than that. I grant you that the legal proprietaries work the way that you say, and that all actions were legal, etc.

      However, changing the license in this way was at least impolite. Possibly there were discussions that I didn't notice, but if so, then nobody's brought them up since. I think it likely that any discussions were basically "private". So neither side had justified their position to the public, except via PR releases.

      Personally, I feel that the LGPL is a better license, but that it certainly lacked politeness the change the license after a company had invested time and money under the assumption that the license was what it was. A 6 months lead time would certainly have been desireable (maybe it was there, and I just didn't know. I seem to recall that there were license discussions a few monthst back, and since I don't pay that much attention to WINE, it could easily have been decided 6 months before becoming effective.)

      Still, once the acrimony has settled down, perhaps this will all work for the best. Transgaming is performing a real service for the Linux community, but it isn't as much of a service as the one that CodeWeavers is performing. But if there's an LGPL code tree, and it can trade code chunks (with TransGaming) to improve both the LGPL and the X-Window license forks (and to make them more similar), then it may well be that everybody wins. (TransGaming has a long way to go before they get the number of sponsors that would cause them to be pledged to release their code changes, so this is a way of getting a partial release. Which improves the possibility that eventually there will be a full release.)
  • It seems strange that someone would just pull something out of fear of the DMCA. Worse case scenario is they say remove it after its realease, and you do. Luckily for US the geenie is out of the bottle by that time, but they conform so its all okay, right?

    I mean - I hate the DMCA as much as the next guy (cause Jack Valenti isnt a guy so it cant be as much as him) but I have to be the skeptic and think maybe there was a different reason he pulled his code.

    Ive been wrong before...
  • The fear of the DCMA is more powerful than the law itself and the people who enforce it.

    If this Hidenori Takeshima is resident in Japan (I dont know where he lives) then the DCMA has no effect on him. Period.

    The DCMA is relevant to and has force only for United States Persons. If someone in the USA downloads your source from outside of the USA, and that source violates the DCMA, the downloader is liable, not the author if the source in question is subsequently implimented in a project.

    Everyone really should understand this by now. The same principle applied to the export of the printed source code of PGP. Once code leaves US borders, it is no longer the business of US courts. Thats why PGPi exists.

    If the DCMA continues to break software like this, the only alternative people will have is to move software development into the free world.

    Yes, the Free world.
    • Yes, but as seen in the case of a certain DeCSS author, the USA seems to think that American law does apply to the entire world.

      The fear is unfortunate, but understandable in my mind.
    • Re:Territoriality (Score:4, Insightful)

      by sqlrob ( 173498 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @11:32AM (#3502171)
      The DCMA is relevant to and has force only for United States Persons. If someone in the USA downloads your source from outside of the USA, and that source violates the DCMA, the downloader is liable, not the author if the source in question is subsequently implimented in a project.

      So why was Johansesn (DeCSS) arrested (or at the very least, taken by authorities) and questioned in Sweden?

      • There should be a KYRO at Slashdot: Know Your Rights Online.

        Then when you get a nock on the door, you will know exactly what to do.

        The confusion over all of this needs to be swept away. This means getting a Real Lawyer® to spell it out for everyone in plain english.

        Laws do not travel along with corporations. When a US company has a branch in another country, the laws of the US are not suddenly transferred along with it. Companies are not Embassies; thier operations are not extraterritorial.
    • If I remember correct, didnt the US federal government arrest a russian for his company breaking the DMCA?

      The US federal government can arrest foreign citizens, they do it all the time. Politics is a nasty game, and it extends to the whole world. M$, Cisco, IBM and every other global company company has offices in most countries. Corporations with the backing of the US federal goverment can put pressure on smaller countries to pass dmca laws, or arrest you.

      cd /mnt/games/jediknight2; winex JEDIOUTCAST.EXE

  • by dTd ( 134414 )
    Whenever windows code is the subject, the conversation revolves around whining about money and who stole what code for what reason. Use only quality GNU software to avoid these issues. I say, let's quit talking about windows and get back to coding and using linux. That way we can be assured of healthy happy minds.
  • ... it looks like the developers of all the Wine and Wine copies are duking it out with licenses rather than M$ style:

    'I'll take your invention, E&E it, then I'll beat you over the head with it'

    'You do that and I'll sue!'

    'Then I'll settle, but I'll keep beating you over the head with it.'

    It's really not like this in the Wine world, but that's how /.'s front page makes it sound.
  • Transgaming (Score:1, Interesting)

    by pajor ( 310214 )
    This really shows Transgaming's position in the free software / open source worlds. I am a subscriber to Transgaming and have since because of their attitude canceled my subscription. I subscribed because they had an interesting business model and I supported it. When the subscriber base of transgaming reached a certain point (apparently non declared [it used to be on their site some where but I bet they renigged]) then they will release it under a less restrictive license "such as the wine license." I finally read that part over again and noticed that it doesn't actually say anything about what license it will be under, and exactly how less restrictive it will be. The fact that they are negotiating to allow simple trivial things back in to the code base that they have been leeching from for years (such as middle mouse support in DirectX) shows they had no intention of remerging the codebase under the wine license. I can almost guarantee that they will never release their modifications under the wine license now, but rather under some non GPL compatible license.

    This is what you get when you trust and give your money to a company founded by ex employees of Corel.

    Gnuyen []
    • Not only trivial hacks, DIBs are hard core. Even Alexandre stated that. Then again, your whining about license. Complete GPL is impossible, as defined with legal reasons defined by some patents.

      Secondary I'm a subscriber too. Let's say they have really bad support, but work is great. I actually haven't got any answer on my questions on forums. They answered on my E-Mails, in about week or two.

      Look from the other side. Codeweavers plugin and Office plugin? Can you run any of those (QT, Schockwave, Office, WMP) by using CVS wine tree. NO? They aren't selling plugins, they sell solutions that work for them only. Closed source and not pubiished.
      • I don't think you're right regarding the patent issue. The patented code can be contained in an MIT-licensed code fragment and the MIT license can be converted to GPL by anyone.


  • It seems to me that several of the most successful open source projects have used multiple licensing. Why not use a dual license? The non-LGPL license would need to be somewhat more restrictive than the X11 license (since there were specific reasons why they wanted to have some copylefting), and I don't know what would fit the bill, but it seems that such a combination would fit the Wine project's needs quite well.
  • License fights (Score:2, Insightful)

    by dmiller ( 581 )
    This adolescent squabbling over licenses is pathetic. It is really sad to see people trying to use the [L]GPL as a weapon. I think I'll just use Rewind
  • This is a most mixed-up story! The use of the LGPL does not prevent anyone from making a proprietary addition! It would not "steal" the Direct3D work. Proprietary code may be linked to LGPL code. It may be static-linked, dynamic liked, anything. Libraries may include mixed proprietary and LGPL work as long as the two can be separated for re-linking (which means the .o files have to be available, big deal). The decision to go to the LGPL does not retroactively change the license on old-code, either, only new additions.


  • by justsomebody ( 525308 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @11:44AM (#3502217) Journal
    Transgaming, Codeweavers, Wine or ReWind?

    Reading their comments in Wine Magazine 122 or was it 121, I felt like the guilty one is Transgaming. But if you'd examine carefully work Transgaming is dealing with, license forces them to work that way. Some parts they made for WineX like Copy Protection just can't work under base Wine license (same reason as CSS for DVD, which is stupid if you ask me), so all they are asking is making patches available in secondary license which would allow them to push them out closed as demanded by patent.

    On the other hand Codeweavers is selling Crossover plugin for a long time and look Quicktime under official Wine license still doesn't work??? I understand they'd sell plugins for browsers, but selling parts of Wine that allow QT to work? That's what exactly what Transgaming was acussed for, just some other parts of system (which are legally closed by patent).

    So who is the guilty one?
    1. Transgaming for not risking their bussines as demanded from Wine side?
    2. Codeweavers for not publishing code for Quicktime to work? Even though Quicktime is not closed by any patent?
    3. Wine for being so obviously on Codeweavers side?
    4. ReWind for making compromise between all of them but obviously left on the side as a side player nobody really cares about.

    I vote for Codeweavers.
    • by Bruce Perens ( 3872 ) <> on Saturday May 11, 2002 @11:52AM (#3502245) Homepage Journal
      Slashdot for getting the story wrong. Anyone else who got the story wrong - which might mean Wine Magazine, but I haven't read it. The LGPL's effect is essentially the same as the BSD license. You can link any proprietary code to it.

      In other words, this is much ado about nothing.


      • You can read Wine magazine to get second side opinion. All they do is bitchin' how wrong is to link some closed proprietary part of InstallShield (you pointed out it is possible), how transgaming is not playing fair for not publishing Copy Protection (this is legally impossible), etc.

        It ends with a stupid comment Alexandre made comparing party with software development. Accused Transgaming for not posting their patches, how he's doing it for fun not for bussines etc. Infact stupid comment that opens up wrong opinion as soon as you finish reading.

        But still, I can't run Quicktime, which I could with Codeweavers patch. That wasn't mentioned not even a bit. To finish, ReWind is nothing but trading and free place between Codeweavers, Transgaming and free developers. Isn't that tragic?

        Where the hell has Wine development gone? To make second hand plugins each of them separately (just wait a month or two and Codeweavers will make Adobe Photoshop pacth selling it for 50$) enabling you to run some peace of software? That would make proprietary software even more expensive, harder to install and most of all, it takes off credibility of Linux.

        I'm not saying it's bad selling something. Hell, I freely support 7 projects, develop one and I buy every piece of software I use, even though I could download it for free or pirate some.

        All I'm saying, projects as Wine are developing more FUD and bad reputation than Wine development.
        • If the choice is being able to play some stupid copy protected, commercial game or having open source code, I'll take the latter, thank you very much. If I want to play a copy protected game, and that's damn unlikely, mind you, I'll have no ethical problem seeking out an unemcumbered (aka cracked) copy of the product I rightfully own.
      • by Surak ( 18578 ) <surak@mailblockS ... com minus distro> on Saturday May 11, 2002 @02:34PM (#3502844) Homepage Journal
        I can't believe I'm arguing with Bruce Perens but here goes:

        Not exactly. BSD lets you modify the BSD code and then redistribute it under a proprietary license. Or even distribute the unmodified BSD code under a proprietary license.

        With LGPL, proprietary code can statically link to the LGPL code, but you can't modify the LGPL code and close the source to that.

        In this case, I believe TransGaming wants to modify the (now) LGPLed Wine code so that they can add a copy protection scheme. Under BSD they could do this. Under LGPL, they have to publish any changes they make directly to the LGPLed source. Which of course would be bad for a copy protection scheme. :)

        • Hiding the source code really doesn't help a copy protection scheme. Copy protection schemes based on typical software-only techniques are fundamentally flawed, whether they're open source or proprietary. It's true that it'd be easy to get the algorithm if they're in the source code... but it really isn't much harder for a knowledgeable person to extract the necessary information from the machine code. And once one person, anywhere, figures it out, it's broadcast to the world, ending the pseudo-secrecy. Before the IBM PC, one of the most popular computers was the Apple // line, where disk copy protection mechanisms became increasingly sophisticated... and each were broken immediately. The whole purpose of a computer is to process data, including copying it.

          Look, it's clear that some organizations take the Wine work, add stuff, and don't give back to the Wine community. The current license allows this, but it looks like many Wine developers don't like what's happening. Thus, the majority of the Wine developers have agreed to switch the license of future versions to the LGPL, which will thus _require_ other developers to work with them if their LGPL code is used. In other words, the license will now require what before was a request and a courtesy. This isn't "theft", this is simply "you can use my Wine code if I can use your Wine code". The LGPL is a common compromise library if a group wants to allow proprietary programs to use it, but wants to create a "consortium" for maintaining the library. The LGPL is used for lots of projects, including GTK+ (the basis of GNOME).

  • Note: WineX uses AFPL. Wine uses LGPL, and the old Wine (ReWind) uses X11/MIT

    The real reason that the license change was made was that Transgaming has made some really nice improvements and promised more work to be done. They also promised to release most it back to the main WINE tree. So far, only very select portions have been. TG argues that if they released more, there will be no incentives for additional subscribers. Thus, TG has a promise but NO RELEASE DATE for a free versions of their code.

    What this does is preempt most of the development in these areas in the main WINE tree. For example if TG is working on improved DirectSound support, and has *promised* to release the code *later*, will you be motivated to work on improved DirectSound support in the main WINE tree? I wouldn't, and that's the problem.

    TG has made promises without any dates. They just say that, "Oh we'll release it back when we recover our costs", but it's hurting WINE development by doing that. It's not only encouraging redundant work, it's also hurting the incentive to make a free version (by their empty promises). By changing to LGPL, they are hoping that WINE developers have an incentive to make something that is not preempted by TG (TG has stated it will not release stuff as LGPL).

    I used to have WineX subscription, but I cancelled it. I also brought Crossover plugin from CW. Pressing a button on my KVM switch to my windows box is not a big deal. The only reason I subscribed was because I thought that I was contributing to WINE development, and playing games on my Linux box was the added bonus.
  • Total Hogwash (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Outland Traveller ( 12138 ) on Saturday May 11, 2002 @02:14PM (#3502796)
    I can't believe this story was posted as-is. What obvious flamebait!

    Newsflash- the LPGL is not some awful burdensom thing designed to make your life hell. It's a perfectly reasonable license that strikes a good balance between the full blown GPL and a BSD-type license. Anyone who has serious complaints about it is just selfish.
    This kind of pointless sniping is not a stellar example of how business and open source can work together. Hopefully Codeweavers and Transgaming (and the l33t followers on both sides) can come up with a more intelligent solution than schoolyard name-calling.
  • Somewhat Interesting (Score:2, Interesting)

    by vinn ( 4370 )
    Where was Slashdot when the huge license debate was going on a few months ago? It was far more interesting and from what I remember it got one or two mentions. Also Bruce Perens said something about licensing and possibly "Wine Magazine" getting it wrong - I urge him to go back to issues 111, 115, and 116 of Wine Weekly News - I'm pretty sure I got it right. (If I didn't let me know and I'll include the necessary changes.)

    I'd also like to point out that Hidenori Takeshima never cited the DMCA as the reason the code was pulled, although ostensibly it's the only legal reason. For all we know his employer could own some of the code.

    Anyway, Gavriel State's proposal is pretty interesting because there hasn't been a major sync with the main (LGPL) Wine CVS in a while. Both sides have a lot to offer. The DLL separation is very important to Transgaming - without it their work will become horribly out of sync. Likewise, the DIB engine and DCOM code would be nice stuff to have in the main Wine tree. (Although, if you read closely it says "current work in WineX that supports DCOM" - according to Ove Kaaven he's work on some new and improved stuff that will make the "current work" obsolete. Perhaps his new stuff has already hit the WineX tree and I'm wrong, but my hunch says they haven't finished it yet.)

    Has anyone ever heard of a BSD and LGPL project
    trading patches back and forth? I'm sure example exist, perhaps some of the Linux and FreeBSD drivers have worked that way in the past.
  • This debate has been going on for a while. As other people have commented, the LGPL change was prompted mostly because some companies were promising to release code back, and never substantially doing so. The X11 license allows this, and indeed it is sometimes needed to have closed-source portions in a project the size of WINE. And Transgaming does indeed have to have SOMETHING to pitch it's product for.

    Now, the point is that this idea has worked. Gav has now proposed 'trading' some substantial parts of code for duel-licensing certain patches made recently. This shows that the change to the LGPL has helped with it's original aim - encouraging users of the main WINE tree to submit their works off the tree back.

    However you look at it, there is no perfect license. The LGPL offers (imho) a good ballance between open source and allowing the closed-source parts that are indeed necessary for WINE to be able to implement certain patent-protected functionality. Basically, this is just FUD of the upmost. There has been no major split in the development community over this, and indeed a majority of WINE commiters have allowed their work to be duel-licensed and commited to both the main WineHQ tree and the x11-forked ReWind tree. Some do not wish that, but that's their own choice. If you spend time coding something, you can damn well do with it what you want ;)

    The same of course applies to TG - they spent time coding some very substantial features, and wish to hold their work back. I think decent code exchanges are fine, and this license change has indeed promoted them.
  • the developer who's been working on the ActiveMovie and DirectShow code for the last nine months suddenly pulled it all from the source tree, citing fears of trouble under the DMCA.

    I'm sick of hearing about spineless programmers suddenly and without explanation pulling their code from cvs trees, whining about dmca. First off, pulling code without prior discussion is a rash and irresponsible move. Secondly, we need people to take a strong stance against DMCA if we ever want to destroy it. At least half my co-workers would be willing to protest in Wash. DC if an open source programmer was ever convicted of a non-crime using dmca. I frankly wouldn't be too surprised if a 'million geek march' formed too..
    • That, and if the code is GPL, other people already have the right to distribute it anyway. So it doesn't get the code out of circulation, but makes the coder look spineless. I suspect there's more here at stake than the abstract threat of a DMCA per/prosecution, though.

The clash of ideas is the sound of freedom.