The freedom to redistribute copies must include binary or executable forms of the program, as well as source code, for both modified and unmodified versions. (Distributing programs in runnable form is necessary for conveniently installable free operating systems.) It is OK if there is no way to produce a binary or executable form for a certain program (since some languages don't support that feature), but you must have the freedom to redistribute such forms should you find or develop a way to make them.
Free software is generally available at no cost and can result in permanently lower TCO costs compared to proprietary software. With free software, businesses can fit software to their specific needs by changing the software themselves or by hiring programmers to modify it for them. Free software often has no warranty, and more importantly, generally does not assign legal liability to anyone. However, warranties are permitted between any two parties upon the condition of the software and its usage. Such an agreement is made separately from the free software license.
Currently, many people use proprietary software that denies users these freedoms and benefits. If we make a copy and give it to a friend, if we try to figure out how the program works, if we put a copy on more than one of our own computers in our own home, we could be caught and fined or put in jail. That’s what’s in the fine print of the license agreement you accept when using proprietary software.
Free Software is the original term for software that respects freedom, and there are important reasons why this terminology continues to be used today. Free Software connotes freedom, and when translated there is a clear distinction between freedom and price. In French, Free Software becomes "logiciels libre", "software libre" in Spanish, "software libero" in Italian, and "Fri Software" in Danish.
Completely FREE Software is a program listing service and software library. It does not produce its own software. Like any library it does not enter into copyright disputes between authors publishers and copyright holders. It is up to the legal owner to pursue copyright infringements directly with a program’s author and/or publisher. Completely FREE Software assumes that ALL copyright issues are resolved (even when told otherwise) and that program authors have full permission to use the characters, concepts and ideas presented in their programs. Program authors and publishers can request that Completely FREE Software remove any listed program and this will be carried out as soon as possible. A program will also be removed if Completely FREE Software receives notification from a duly recognized Officer of the Court pertaining to a legal ruling which would prevent that program from being listed. However RESPONSIBILITY and LEGAL LIABILITY in the area of copyright rests solely with the program author and/or publisher and not with Completely FREE Software or its WebAuthor(s), staff or agents.
In this program governments and intergovernmental organisations pay substantial fees for a superficial look at some parts of Windows sourcecode in special Microsoft facilities. This may increase "perceived security" but is essentially useless - especially since they do not even know whether what they looked at is what they have on their computers. And of course it does not give them freedom.
In 2006, OpenBSD started the first campaign against the use of binary blobs in kernels. Blobs are usually freely distributable device drivers for hardware from vendors that do not reveal driver source code to users or developers. This restricts the users' freedom effectively to modify the software and distribute modified versions. Also, since the blobs are undocumented and may have bugs, they pose a security risk to any operating system whose kernel includes them. The proclaimed aim of the campaign against blobs is to collect hardware documentation that allows developers to write free software drivers for that hardware, ultimately enabling all free operating systems to become or remain blob-free.
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