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PCGUY760 04-06-2012 04:58 PM

can I sell desktops or laptops with Linux Mint or Ubuntu installed on it?
 
Hi, I am a I.T professional, been working in the tech field since 2001, I buy old computers at auctions or get them from companies I do e-waste cleanup from. Many are still viable machines that work. But if i put XP on them they work too slow and nobody wants them. I have installed MINT and UBUNTU and they work fine, way faster, I am wondering if its OK to sell the hardware with this OS installed. I dont sell discs. These are PC that I sell for like $45 to $75 depending on amount of ram , hard drive size, and processor speed

k3lt01 04-06-2012 05:11 PM

Unless we know what legal jurisdiction you are in no one can give a definitive answer. I would suggest that becauseyou are the legal owner, after you purchase it, of the hardware you can on sell it. You should not however be selling something (i,e, the operating system) because you did not purchase it.

I'm in Australia and do a similar thing although the PCs I have are given to me freely, as long as I wipe the hard drives and I also give them away without charge. I also put a copy of the iso on the hard drive so I am not charging for discs or anything like that and the person then has the opportunity to burn it themselves if they want to.

PCGUY760 04-06-2012 05:16 PM

I am in san diego area of california, USA , thanks for the info, i dont sell the software. I sell hardware after i wipe the drive and install the linux OS , i never gave a disc because i was not sure if i could, also anyone can download it for free

Dark_Helmet 04-06-2012 05:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by k3lt01
You should not however be selling something (i,e, the operating system) because you did not purchase it.

In the words of the Brits, "rubbish."

k3lt01 may have a moral distaste for it, but that is his opinion.

It is no more "wrong" to sell a copy of Linux Mint that you downloaded than it is to sell your Mother's cookies that she gave you.

You are selling the hardware. Perfectly fine.
You are being compensated for knowing where to obtain an OS that runs well on said hardware. Perfectly fine.
You are being compensated for your time to install said OS on said hardware. Perfectly fine.
You are being compensated for your time verifying the hardware boots and functions. Perfectly fine.
You can charge for the software itself. Perfectly fine.

Indeed, have a look at the FAQ from GNU.org regarding GPL:
Does the GPL allow me to sell copies of the program for money?

Further, you are distributing verbatim copies of the software (via installation). My understanding of the GPL is that you are under no obligation to provide a copy of the source code unless you so choose. You are only required to provide the source if you make changes to a GPL program and distribute the version with the changes.

TobiSGD 04-06-2012 05:59 PM

It may in some areas not be legal to sell a machine with Mint. AFAIK Mint comes with a bunch of codecs pre-installed that are not open source and may be are not free to distribute in your area.
For advices about the law in your country it is the best option to ask a lawyer to get good advice.

k3lt01 04-06-2012 06:10 PM

TobiSGD has given good advice, consult your local legal professional as to what you can and cannot sell. I myself do not sell the Operating System because I get it freely, discs or USBs however, and if you look at some of the links in my signature you will see this is the case, are a totally different matter.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark_Helmet (Post 4646747)
In the words of the Brits, "rubbish."

In the words of the Brits, you have just posted complete bollocks with regards to my post.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark_Helmet (Post 4646747)
k3lt01 may have a moral distaste for it, but that is his opinion.

I do not have a moral distaste for it, infact I don't have a moral distastes for many things. You have no idea what I like or dislike regardless of your completely misinformed opinion of my tastes. Did you see I said suggest? Did you see I mentioned legal jurisdictions? There are legal issues involved so think before you bite.

jefro 04-06-2012 07:36 PM

To get around such rules, companies that sell linux buy their product from a software vendor. I doubt you can legally install any version and sell it. There would always be the question if part of the price contained a portion to the software. Would you ever get caught. Maybe not. I would not install Mint with the codecs for sure.

See what it costs for OEM linux.

You can offer free (if stated free) a cd of some legal totally open source version if you follow all the embedded rules/agreements/eula's for re-distribution. Some CD's can be sold too for what you can get it for. Cheapbytes used to sell like 10 packs of stuff. http://www.linuxcd.org/ may be the place now.

Dark_Helmet 04-06-2012 07:47 PM

I'm not going to get into a ____ match with you.

But I would suggest that you take your own advice: "so think before you bite."

I would direct you back to the very quote you included:
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark_Helmet
k3lt01 may have a moral distaste for it, but that is his opinion.

(emphasis added for clarity)

So, k3lt01, did you read the quote? Do you understand what the word "may" means? Or perhaps you did not "think before you bite."

Further, I also said it was your opinion. "Opinion" is the word I used. How is:
Quote:

Originally Posted by k3lt01
You should not however be selling something (i,e, the operating system) because you did not purchase it.

NOT an opinion?


Quote:

Originally Posted by k3lt01
Did you see I mentioned legal jurisdictions?

You have no idea how much training I have in the legal field. I guarantee you, unless you have a license, you've had less.


The licensing of individual pieces of software can vary. The licensing of the Linux kernel and core utilities--the operating system--cannot because they are GPL. If the OP wishes to sell the operating system, the OP may do so in accord with the GPL as stated above. If the OP wishes to sell copies of specific applications within the install that are not licensed by the GPL, the OP would need to abide by the licensing restrictions of that piece of software.

Alternatively, apply common business practice: cost-shift by not selling the software and setting a higher rate for installation or a larger margin for the hardware, the installation, etc.

k3lt01 04-06-2012 08:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark_Helmet (Post 4646784)
I'm not going to get into a ____ match with you.

Then don't respond to me! Simple isn't it.
Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark_Helmet (Post 4646784)
But I would suggest that you take your own advice: "so think before you bite."

Read my post in its entirety, taking it in its entire context. Not one sentence at a time splitting hairs so you can look like you know me and how I think.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark_Helmet (Post 4646784)
You have no idea how much training I have in the legal field. I guarantee you, unless you have a license, you've had less.

I love this type of argument. Provide proof because if you don't what you have posted about your legal knowledge is mere hearsay your honour. You insert an argument that makes the other person look like they have a personal issue and at that point you think you have won. Creating a cheap argument based on nothing but your own opinion and then asserting you have a superior knowledge has done nothing for you. Stick to the facts not the "may" haves. Give solid proof of your claims, with regards to the OPs legal rights to be able to sell something that is for the most part in public ownership but also contains propriety software, if you have such a wealth of knowledge of the legal system. I would hazard a guess and say he can sell discs or USBs with them but to sell the OS itself (i.e. at more than the values of the item it is contained on and the price to produce it and post it etc) is a grey area legally and that you cannot give him a full guarantee that he is not breaking some obscure law.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dark_Helmet (Post 4646784)
The licensing of individual pieces of software can vary. The licensing of the Linux kernel and core utilities--the operating system--cannot because they are GPL. If the OP wishes to sell the operating system, the OP may do so in accord with the GPL as stated above. If the OP wishes to sell copies of specific applications within the install that are not licensed by the GPL, the OP would need to abide by the licensing restrictions of that piece of software.

Alternatively, apply common business practice: cost-shift by not selling the software and setting a higher rate for installation or a larger margin for the hardware, the installation, etc.

Alot of words to get around things like Linux Mint's pre-installed Codecs and Ubuntu's Jockey that will install non-free drivers. The OP asked about Mint and Ubuntu, they have non-free codecs and applications in them. Is he legally allowed to sell the OS with these things contained therein? Unless you can categorically state, and provide proof of your assertion, you cannot just say he can sell it. If and when you can provide such proof I will bow down to your, self proclaimed, greater legal knowledge. I will wait with baited breath until then.

Dark_Helmet 04-06-2012 08:45 PM

Quote:

I will wait with baited breath until then.
Please see attached.

I graduated from Texas A&M with a Computer Engineering Degree.
I graduated from Texas Wesleyan School of Law.
I passed the Texas Bar Exam.
I became a member of the Texas State Bar after passing the MPRE (Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam).

Shall I send you an email address for where to send the video of you bowing? Because, like you, I can't just take you at your honor. I need proof.

EDIT:
Attachment removed and dates removed.

PCGUY760 04-06-2012 08:58 PM

DH

so you are telling me it is OK, in the USA and in the Peoples Republic of California, for me to acquire old desktops and laptops, erase windows, and install MINT or UBUNTU ?

again, i dont include a disk, nor do i charge a ton or large amount, simple something for the hardware and my time to configure the pc, i make no code change to any OS, for what i charge i spend as little time as needed on it

manu-tm 04-06-2012 09:03 PM

Have a look at: http://www.linuxmint.com/faq.php

k3lt01 04-06-2012 09:04 PM

Lol, you have no idea do you. You do not know who I am you do not know anything about me and you start bragging and even have to keep going. Now you have "proven your credentials" provide proof of your other claims. Remembering what I said in my initial post and refraining from taking it out of context as I am sure you will know and understand is not good legal practise. Giving appropriate precedence's and not hearsay your honour.

Send me your email if you wish I have no problem with carrying out further investigations into your qualifications and claims.

k3lt01 04-06-2012 09:15 PM

I know you are asking Dark_Helmet but I think you need to consider two things.

What are you charging for?The hardware which you purchased or the entire package which includes the software?
Are you providing any sort of warranty? and if you are not are you making it clear that there is no warranty.

Like I said in my first reply to you, before Dark_Helmet started up misquoting and misrepresenting what I had posted, I do this in Australia and there are legal issues regarding proprietary software which both Mint and Ubuntu have in their systems. I would be asking someone who specialises in this sort of field, if Dark_Helmet specialises then so be it, if not then keep asking because you may unwittingly be charging for something you have no legal right to charge for.

manu-tm 04-06-2012 09:34 PM

Is it different from selling Linux Mint on USB sticks?
http://www.linuxcd.org/view_distro.php?id_distro=337


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