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Old 07-01-2006, 12:03 PM   #1
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Question Open Question About Apple Inc.

I didn't know where else to ask this but I am curious .. very curious about something I recently learned and n oone seems to be asking this...

Since Apple has moved OS X to the Intel platform they have recently anounced that they will no longer be "Open Source" and since OS X is basically FreeBSD which is Open Source and GPL'd how can they close it up? No one seems to care about this but it's been nagging me ever since I learned about it! Thanks for any help with this even though it's not really aLinux question but Open Source is important we should promote it!

Old 07-01-2006, 12:08 PM   #2
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not all open source is gpl'ed. read up on the bsd licence.
Old 07-01-2006, 12:20 PM   #3
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O.K. I will ... but what does the Open Source Community think about Apple Inc. closing OS X? I'm leaving windows for SUSE 10.1 Retail (been using free version now openSUSE for some time) I always loved Apple but their closing their source leaves a bad taste in my mouth!!!
Old 07-01-2006, 03:03 PM   #4
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Apple has never been an open source company, so my view is that this is all much ado about nothing.
Old 07-01-2006, 09:27 PM   #5
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Their kernel was open source but now it's not. I don't see it as a major loss as it was hardly a pack leader, most of the positive side of OS X is the fantastic GUI logic and the unix base.
Old 07-02-2006, 12:28 AM   #6
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Since the kernel was a BSD derivative, it was licenced under the BSD licence.

The BSD licence basically says that "here is the program and the source, do whatever you want with it". The GPL has a clause that says "here is the program and the source, if your program includes GPLed code, then your program must be GPL as well". It is very likely that Windows actually has some BSD code in it.

Apple has not done anything unexpected in my opinion - they have never been committed to open source principles, they simply used what they could get. As cs-cam said, the best thing about OS X is the GUI and its Unix base, not its so called "open source" kernel, called Darwin. This is not going to change - OS X will still be Unix based, and will still have a great GUI.

Old 07-02-2006, 11:47 AM   #7
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I agree: what they are doing is understandable, and defensible imho.

The foundation of OS/X is Darwin. The code is built using derivatives of the GNU compiler-suite. But the entire system, as a whole, is not ... and has never been.

I should note also that Apple has contributed some of the stuff which they developed .. which they paid to develop .. and they furnish it today in source-code form.

Like every company, Apple's in business to make money, and they make money by producing a tightly-designed mesh of hardware and software, both designed for one another. They use an open-source foundation, and they use open-source tools, but they sell the final product. I do not recall at the moment if they offer any (closed) source-code licenses to any segments. "Their product" is "a computer system."

If you look closely, you'll notice that there are Linux-based vendors out there doing exactly the same thing. It's how they pay their developers salaries.

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 07-02-2006 at 11:49 AM.


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