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On "Shareware" Distributions

Posted 04-17-2011 at 04:52 PM by DJ Shaji

I recently came across something called Linux XP, which is a shareware distribution, which
  • is designed to look like Windows XP
  • will "deactivate" itself in 30 days if a serial number is not purchased.
  • is based on Fedora.

My question is this - how is it ethical to take something from the community, and sell it for a price to unsuspecting customers? Surely somebody who's new to Linux is not supposed to know any better, and seeing "XP" in the title and the familiar blue taskbar will be content to pay up, as he has been accustomed to do. Meanwhile, the company makes money off of it's customers' ignorance, doing nothing at all.

More good questions:
  • Does anybody even pay for this thing?
  • Would it be ethical to reverse engineer it and release "serial numbers" into the public?

I for one would reply a big yes to both the above questions. I hate Oracle for much the same reasons.
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