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Old 12-01-2019, 02:23 AM   #1
freemedia2018
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The sheer breadth of what Github controls


It started with finding out that both JWM and IceWM are on Github. Then I started keeping track. Sure, there are some false positives-- the biggest so far were Qemu (not Github) and OpenBSD. But GhostBSD is developed on Github; as is Void Linux, Bodhi, Manjaro, Funtoo, Whonix and (after months of being DDOSed) Slitaz. Most though not all of Puppy is developed on Github. Both Illumos and OpenSolaris.

CPython, Rust, Clojure, Julia and Racket-- Mozilla uses it, as does Brave and Pale Moon. Docker, Firejail, LXDE and LXQt, Leafpad and Featherpad, as well as Geany. ImageMagick, though not the fork GraphicsMagick.

Of the 2000+ apps on Fdroid, 79% are on Github. Of the nearly 2000 lisp libraries in Quicklisp (it's like npm for lisp I guess) 78% of those are on Github. I'm hoping this nearly 4 out of 5 ratio isn't endemic.

It's not like there would be as many if Microsoft had owned it all along. And a few have left, but many have stayed.

Systemd is on Github, though so is OpenRC. So is OpenSSL and OpenSUSE.

It seemed harmless enough at the time.

I don't think the whole point of Free software was to have Microsoft control all of these projects by hosting their code and controlling access to it. Even the Open Source Initiative website used to host the Halloween Documents.

Microsoft has always "worked with" competitors they wanted to dominate. Having Microsoft "cooperating" with you isn't a good sign, any more than it's a good sign when an attack dog starts drooling.

But whatever you think of Github's owners, they sure host A LOT of our stuff.

Why mention it? Until recently, I had no idea just- how- much. I suspect quite a lot of people don't know how much they now have control over. We can of course, debate how much control this really constitutes, given that technically speaking, anybody can leave.

I don't know him, though a fellow named bruceleebunny is posting issues to some Github projects like Yacy and I think Firejail, with long lists of reasons to leave.
 
Old 12-01-2019, 03:36 AM   #2
ondoho
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One should investigate if these git repos are also hosted elsewhere!

I moved away from github as soon as I heard about MS taking it over, and ever since then I have been pushing to 2 different git hosters.

This is most likely also happening for the big projects like systemd and the kernel, but it would be interesting to get some overall statistics on that.
I can see how some projects require the popularity one gets through github, so it would make sense to have a mirror of the project there.
Of course there's the question whether one even still owns the code hosted on github... my guess is yes, otherwise you wouldn't see the kernel or systemd on github anymore. Or maybe keeping ownership is a feature that costs extra?
Who knows.
Some not-so-good things already happened before the takeover, and MS are certainly giving it a good work-over now.
I'm having a minor Told-You-So moment everytime I visit github and a new MS domain pops up in my uMatrix. Still waiting for the big one. They sure make it appear as though they're only making "good changes", but under the hood a few bombs have already dropped.

In any case, instead of simply arguing that one shouldn't trust big corporations, I'd like some info on what exactly did change on github and what it all means.
 
Old 12-01-2019, 05:51 AM   #3
freemedia2018
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ondoho View Post
One should investigate if these git repos are also hosted elsewhere!
I'm doing both. The discovery phase is more important to me, though quality checks make the data more meaningful. I've found 4 false positives.

Quote:
I moved away from github as soon as I heard about MS taking it over, and ever since then I have been pushing to 2 different git hosters.
I know the feeling. I still have a copy of the goodbye letter from Github.

Quote:
This is most likely also happening for the big projects like systemd and the kernel, but it would be interesting to get some overall statistics on that.
The Linux kernel has its own hosting, I think even Git itself is hosted where the kernel is. But both GKH and Sasha Levin are cozy with softies, and Jim Zemlin loves Bill G a lot more than Bill loves Linux. So there will likely be trouble there eventually. At least Github isn't a key part of that problem yet.

Quote:
I can see how some projects require the popularity one gets through github, so it would make sense to have a mirror of the project there.
I'm not so worried about Github mirrors. Sure, it's better to avoid them though they're not what I'm looking for.

Quote:
Of course there's the question whether one even still owns the code hosted on github... my guess is yes, otherwise you wouldn't see the kernel or systemd on github anymore. Or maybe keeping ownership is a feature that costs extra?
Ownership is a great question, because technically the code is owned by the authors-- but really the entire history of Microsoft-- every year they've existed, is about how they can gradually take ownership things that their competitors did first. Usually it was through being Microsoft, though they prefer we use the word "Innovation." They have certainly innovated a lot of ways to steal things (though even those they stole from IBM.)

Quote:
I'm having a minor Told-You-So moment everytime I visit github and a new MS domain pops up in my uMatrix. Still waiting for the big one. They sure make it appear as though they're only making "good changes", but under the hood a few bombs have already dropped.

In any case, instead of simply arguing that one shouldn't trust big corporations, I'd like some info on what exactly did change on github and what it all means.
Bradley Kuhn has a relevant quote about this, perhaps one of the best:

Quote:
Microsoft is unique among proprietary software companies: they are the only ones who have actively tried to kill [FLOSS]. It’s not often someone wants to be your friend after trying to kill you for ten years
When Amazon took control of people's libraries, with a platform that puts more control in the hands of publishers (without DRM, your library is a matter of First-sale doctrine, but the DMCA clearly outweighs First-sale on books) they demonstrated their power in two ways: they deleted (refunded and revoked) every copy of 1984, and they deleted every book in one person's library. Of course this only applies to Kindles that were able to sync online.

With Github, they have also done two things-- locked out contributors by country (those subject to export restrictions) and deleted certain projects (deepfake apps.)

One thing that many people haven't kept track of over the years is Microsoft's patent aggressions. Microsoft has ties to the company suing GNOME over patents, and people have left GNOME (Stormy Peters) for Microsoft as well.

Point being, that we know the Github thing is going to play out with patents sooner or later.

I said that the FSF was going to have a major change in the future, possibly related to Stallman being censored-- he resigned within 30 days of that. I make these predictions longer-term. They often happen a lot sooner. The same thing happened with the Red Hat purchase.

I won't be salty if I'm wrong, I'm actually pretty tired of these things coming true.
 
Old 12-01-2019, 07:00 AM   #4
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It's yet another pillar in M$'s "open source strategy" - have as many people as you can using YOUR/THEIR platform and therefore you can have control over whatever is on your platform. It's the for the same reason they donate to the Linux Foundation that M$ bought github. What better way to have control if you're sitting at the table that makes the decisions? It isn't because they "love Linux" or "love opensource", and I'm going to be the next pope too... yeah right.

Have a look at their "terms & conditions" for github... like the one that says something to the effect of; if your software makes money, then guess who's entitled to a slice of the profit? That's right, M$ - what a bunch of snakes. So they get to profit from YOUR work, just because you made the mistake of signing up to github. It just goes to show it's still all about the $$$$ to M$, nothing more.

It surprises me that some actually somehow believe that M$ just wants in, and/or even worse, they really do "love Linux" and/or "opensource" - what a bunch of suckers.

I wouldn't trust M$ as far as I could throw push them, let alone would I sign up to github when I can write some serious software. Forget it. I'd trust mickey mouse before I'd trust M$.
 
Old 12-01-2019, 07:42 AM   #5
onebuck
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Moved: This thread is more suitable in <General> and has been moved accordingly to help your thread/question get the exposure it deserves.
 
Old 12-01-2019, 09:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsbjsb001 View Post
Have a look at their "terms & conditions" for github... like the one that says something to the effect of; if your software makes money, then guess who's entitled to a slice of the profit?
I looked at https://help.github.com/en/github/si...rms-of-service but I don't see anything about what happens if your software makes money. Could you give a more specific reference?
 
Old 12-01-2019, 11:08 PM   #7
jsbjsb001
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Originally Posted by ntubski View Post
I looked at https://help.github.com/en/github/si...rms-of-service but I don't see anything about what happens if your software makes money. Could you give a more specific reference?
Yeah, sorry ntubski, I mis-remembered, it was the "Microsoft Services Agreement" I was referring to - specifically what's under the heading "Your Content";

Quote:
...you grant to Microsoft a worldwide and royalty-free intellectual property license to use Your Content, for example, to make copies of, retain, transmit, reformat, display, and distribute via communication tools Your Content on the Services.
...so yes, your eagle eyes are quite correct, it's not github's TOS I meant. My mistake.

But it does raise the point that given M$ owns github; there's nothing to stop them changing github's TOS to include anything they like. And by using github, you'd have to agree to whatever is in their TOS. So I still maintain the rest of what I said above, in that; given M$'s track record towards opensource and Linux in particular, how can we trust them not to do similar things in the future, just in a more obscure and under-handed fashion? Well personally, I wouldn't be taking the chance...
 
Old 12-01-2019, 11:25 PM   #8
freemedia2018
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Originally Posted by jsbjsb001 View Post
...you grant to Microsoft a worldwide and royalty-free intellectual property license to use Your Content, for example, to make copies of, retain, transmit, reformat, display, and distribute via communication tools Your Content on the Services.
FWIW there is a similar clause to that in the Github TOS and it's pretty standard fare.

Quote:
But it does raise the point that given M$ owns github; there's nothing to stop them changing github's TOS to include anything they like.
And that's a fair point.
 
Old 12-03-2019, 08:38 AM   #9
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Microsoft or not, github was already a for profit company which made millionaires of it's owners... these acquisitions don't surprise me (as with Red Hat selling to IBM) nor does developers who have spent years banging the FLOSS drum, selling out for more money and as with de icaza, friedman (now the github CEO) et al - all now employed by Microsoft.

I've seen some sentiment on the web to the effect that the Red Hat acquisition was ok, simply because it was IBM and not Microsoft - but I'm not convinced. IBM, is not squeaky clean by any means, it has worked with Microsoft in the past and probably will do so again if it suits it's agenda.

Red Hat, SUSE and Canonical are Microsoft "partners" and the Linux Foundation sold their souls to Microsoft and others a long time ago (lovingly repeating the "MS loves Linux" propaganda).

I have brought up the sale of Novell before, through Attachmate and onto Micro Focus (with SUSE finally ending up in the hands of EQT - a private equity firm). A whole stack of patents from Novell ended up with Microsoft via CPTN Holdings.

And are of course part of that consortium of "Linux friendly" corporations at OIN, who you can of course completely trust to never abuse the patents they control...

WSL/WSL2 is simply a means to run a quasi Linux system on an underlying Windows OS, most likely paving the way for a future "locked in" x86 system where Windows is the only option and alternative OS cannot be installed - which is what UEFI, the "trojan horse" for the secureboot payload, is all about - rather than "security".

Yes the "Unified EFI Forum, which consists of Microsoft and it's OEMS is - somewhat amazingly - developing software, which is Microsoft Windows centric and makes it intentionally difficult to install another OS in place of Windows. In typical slippery fashion, MS decided to leave it to OEMs to "decide" if they would allow secureboot to be disabled. Red Hat and Canonical responded by selling, out of course and signing up with Microsoft to obtain the signing keys.

Microsoft are highly duplicitous - they have simply bought people, a lot of people and some companies and unsurprisingly it has worked.

Last edited by cynwulf; 12-04-2019 at 03:40 AM. Reason: removed duplicate paragraph
 
Old 12-03-2019, 10:51 PM   #10
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But.... but... Microsoft LOVES Linux now that Linux is no longer "that virus"! Yeah if you really enjoy a good scare check out the Platinum members of --- The Linux Foundation --- who also own Linux.com and who, one year after being taken over by the foundation effectively fired all previous authors and editors. It is my understanding the man now in charge of Linux.com doesn't himself use Linux, but prefers Windows. Hmmm curiouser and curiouser...eh?
 
Old 12-03-2019, 11:13 PM   #11
freemedia2018
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It is my understanding the man now in charge of Linux.com doesn't himself use Linux, but prefers Windows.
Jim Zemlin, Executive Director and Swapnil Bhartiya, in charge of the website, are both Mac guys-- Swapnil has pretty much said "Mac 4 Life!" They both sell Windows and WSL as "Linux."

Considering that Microsoft has tanked companies before to make them easier to buy (Nokia) they might try to water down the Linux brand so they can own (and threaten lawsuits over / charge royalties over) that. Linus has very little say at this point, the business model of LF includes selling tweets and you can even buy "Thank yous." It's practically a Cam Model's way of doing business. At least Swapnil is good looking.
 
Old 12-03-2019, 11:52 PM   #12
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i wonder if there are going to be M$ Linux distro in the future.
 
Old 12-04-2019, 12:46 AM   #13
freemedia2018
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i wonder if there are going to be M$ Linux distro in the future.
I won't post the obvious link, but some of the LQ posters in this thread know the one I mean.

There's this one, from 2015 where the above-mentioned Swapnil writes about a "Linux-based" operating system that Microsoft created for their own use: https://www.cio.com/article/2984659/...ng-system.html
 
Old 12-04-2019, 03:23 AM   #14
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There's this one, from 2015 where the above-mentioned Swapnil writes about a "Linux-based" operating system that Microsoft created for their own use: https://www.cio.com/article/2984659/...ng-system.html
damn

i suspected that they could do it in the future, didnt know they have done it already.
 
Old 12-04-2019, 04:25 AM   #15
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When all is said and done the kernel is an area where there is a lack of choice - and that's what has been exploited here.

The anti-systemd crowd have been touting "init freedom" since Debian made the decision to switch to systemd. But there were a few developments at the same time which many seem to have missed entirely. Debian was host to a small project which was slowly but surely making progress in incorporating the FreeBSD kernel.

While not everyone would care about this - i.e. most seem happy with zero choice of kernel, but may demand it elsewhere, there are advantages to it and more importantly it's an option and options are important for many reasons... the Red Hat backed systemd project of course derided this and anything BSD along with it, simply because "BSD" is a perceived threat to corporate systemd/Linux. It has stalled of course and is faced with an overwhelming tide of systemdisms to contend with.

Alternative kernels are not getting any "air time" from the corporate mouthpieces now doing most of the talking in the free software (or should I say "open source") world because they have ploughed money into Linux. They are creating black box Linux proprietary, for profit, solutions to suit business needs and the corporate agenda.

It makes you wonder, when you look at cases such as kdbus, how long such an individual can last at the helm of a project which is now essentially run by a corporate consortium. It's all about money and when you've paid money to develop a solution and one individual decides that it's not happening and uses that kind of language, it's obvious that it's not going to be well received - particularly as they are the effective paymasters... for me, since the CoC, the writing is on the wall...

Last edited by cynwulf; 12-04-2019 at 04:33 AM.
 
  


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