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OpenBSD Project in Financial Danger 610

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the show-me-the-money dept.
DieNadel writes "In an entry to the OpenBSD Journal, Marco, from the OpenBSD project, warns about the somewhat disturbing financial situation in which they are now. The OpenBSD team is the one that also develops the OpenSSH suite, used nowadays almost everywhere. From the entry: 'What I want to point out what a lot of people don't seem to realize is that OpenSSH development is paid from the same pool of money as OpenBSD. OpenSSH is in use by millions around the world however the revenue stream just simply isn't there. This is where other projects could help. Without naming entities or projects by name there are others out there that are sitting on some cash. It would be wonderful if these entities could share some of the wealth to keep us going.'"
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OpenBSD Project in Financial Danger

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  • order an OpenBSD CD (Score:5, Informative)

    by lotzmana (775963) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @01:20PM (#14965049)
    Brother, improving your security is as easy as ordering a CD: http://www.openbsd.org/orders.html [openbsd.org]

    The CDs that OpenBSD project sells is their main source of revenue and support.
  • by dkaplowitz (248055) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @01:24PM (#14965086) Homepage
    "Somebody needs to set up a site where we can donate money to the OpenBSD project through PayPal or some other convenient method."

    http://www.openbsd.org/orders.html [openbsd.org]
  • by NZheretic (23872) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @01:25PM (#14965101) Homepage Journal
    OpenBSD's Donations [openbsd.org]:
    OpenBSD has no wealthy sponsors, nor a business model.

    Naturally, the OpenBSD project requires funds to operate, due to electrial costs, Internet line costs and the same hardware upgrades that everyone must experience. For this reason, the project sells CDROMs and T-shirts and posters. Thus, when you buy an OpenBSD CD, whether at a conference, from any sales site, or from our CDROM ordering page [openbsd.org], you are helping to increase the chance that OpenBSD will continue to make future releases.

    It is also possible to donate funds or hardware [openbsd.org], in which case your name ends up on our Donations page [openbsd.org].

  • Re:Sad (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @01:28PM (#14965120)
    Absolutely.. the url is here: http://www.openbsd.org/donations.html [openbsd.org]
  • quick & painless (Score:4, Informative)

    by rehabdoll (221029) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @01:31PM (#14965156) Homepage
    http://openbsd.org/donations.html [openbsd.org] - quite painless.
  • Realize OpenSSH (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @01:43PM (#14965252)
    It is now official. Netcraft confirms: *BSD is dying

    One more crippling bombshell hit the already beleaguered *BSD community when IDC confirmed that *BSD market share has dropped yet again, now down to less than a fraction of 1 percent of all servers. Coming on the heels of a recent Netcraft survey which plainly states that *BSD has lost more market share, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. *BSD is collapsing in complete disarray, as fittingly exemplified by failing dead last [samag.com] in the recent Sys Admin comprehensive networking test.

    You don't need to be the Amazing Kreskin [amazingkreskin.com] to predict *BSD's future. The hand writing is on the wall: *BSD faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for *BSD because *BSD is dying. Things are looking very bad for *BSD. As many of us are already aware, *BSD continues to lose market share. Red ink flows like a river of blood.

    FreeBSD is the most endangered of them all, having lost 93% of its core developers. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time FreeBSD developers Jordan Hubbard and Mike Smith only serve to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: FreeBSD is dying.

    Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

    OpenBSD leader Theo states that there are 7000 users of OpenBSD. How many users of NetBSD are there? Let's see. The number of OpenBSD versus NetBSD posts on Usenet is roughly in ratio of 5 to 1. Therefore there are about 7000/5 = 1400 NetBSD users. BSD/OS posts on Usenet are about half of the volume of NetBSD posts. Therefore there are about 700 users of BSD/OS. A recent article put FreeBSD at about 80 percent of the *BSD market. Therefore there are (7000+1400+700)*4 = 36400 FreeBSD users. This is consistent with the number of FreeBSD Usenet posts.

    Due to the troubles of Walnut Creek, abysmal sales and so on, FreeBSD went out of business and was taken over by BSDI who sell another troubled OS. Now BSDI is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

    All major surveys show that *BSD has steadily declined in market share. *BSD is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If *BSD is to survive at all it will be among OS dilettante dabblers. *BSD continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, *BSD is dead.

    Fact: *BSD is dying

  • Re:Sad (Score:5, Informative)

    by compass46 (259596) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @01:45PM (#14965269)
  • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:01PM (#14965402) Journal
    OpenSSH is already BSD licensed. The BSD license is 100% GPL compatible. Perhaps you are thinking of OpenSSL, which uses and old Apache license which is not GPL compatible.
  • donations are better (Score:2, Informative)

    by Triumph The Insult C (586706) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:12PM (#14965490) Homepage Journal
    donate $45 and do an ftp install. the project gets much more $$ that way
  • by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:15PM (#14965525) Homepage Journal

    Our webserver, DNS servers, logging boxes, DHCP, wireless DMZ, etc, all exist here thanks to OpenBSD (and we support them). And that's off the top of my head.
  • by m50d (797211) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:30PM (#14965689) Homepage Journal
    Switching would also be in violation of the rights of those who contributed code under the assumption of BSD; switching thus isn't legally viable.

    Erm, the WHOLE FUCKING POINT of being BSD rather than GPL licensed is that you CAN change the license. Go read the BSD license. You're permitted to redistribute the software under pretty much any terms you want.

    The GPL isn't free software - it's communal software as in communistic communes or hippie communes.

    The only way to be truly free is to put it in the public domain. You have to pick a line where you feel software is "free enough" - Stallman's four freedoms seem a pretty good place.

    The BSD style license enables true freedom for authors and users alike. Freedom to fork. Freedom to contribute. Freedome to use.

    All those are freedoms you have with the GPL

    The GPL is so complicated how many of you have actually taken the time to read it?

    I have. It's only a page or so, less if you skip the preamble (which isn't part of teh license itself)

    It bases is communistic society on rules that restrict your freedom by putting limits on what you can and can't do with it.

    The only restrictions there are are there to preserve the freedom of others. Is the only free society a complete anarchy?

    For example, you are not free to develop with it and sell your modified versions without contributing your source code back to the commune.

    False. You have to give the source code to the people you sell the program to, and you have to give them permission to redistribute and modify it. That's all.

    And if you're going to be picky, am I free to sell a warrantied version of BSD software? I don't see how I can.

  • Re:Sorry, Theo (Score:1, Informative)

    by ormandj (956774) <ormandj.corenode@com> on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:37PM (#14965763)
    There is no irony. I'm not the one who has been an ass. Go read my (relatively short) post history. I don't have a track record of being an ass to everyone. I'm not a pot calling a kettle black. Even most OBSD supporters will admit to Theo's rather... abrasive... ways. See DARPA posts below. I don't see how explaining Theo is the root of the funding problems makes me an ass.
  • by Penguin Programmer (241752) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:38PM (#14965767) Homepage
    Somebody needs to set up a site where we can donate money to the OpenBSD project through PayPal or some other convenient method. This is an important project, and I think that a lot of people in the community realize that, but take for granted that development happens "for free."


    They have a paypal link on their website. http://www.openbsd.org/donations.html [openbsd.org]
  • by EatHam (597465) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:42PM (#14965820)
    there's obviously a problem.

    I don't think that wanting to retire someday equates to a "problem". Seriously, you need some schooling. You have some really misguided ideas about investing, the amount of time it takes, and the resources necessary to start. Read the link I gave you. Within two hours (and that just once, not every day) you can be up and running if you choose to.
  • Re:Do what you can. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Suppafly (179830) <slashdot.suppafly@net> on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @02:59PM (#14966002)
    Only high-profile speakers get their expenses covered by the conference itself, and only if the conference has a high budget.

    No, if they want to hear what you have to say, they will pay for it. You probably just aren't that good at negotiating.
  • by Ded Bob (67043) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @03:17PM (#14966183) Homepage
    Erm, the WHOLE FUCKING POINT of being BSD rather than GPL licensed is that you CAN change the license. Go read the BSD license. You're permitted to redistribute the software under pretty much any terms you want.

    You are not allowed to change the license. You may add restrictions, such as the GPL, to the code, but the original license stays.

    The only way to be truly free is to put it in the public domain.

    I think I have read that in the U.S. it is safer to have an AS-IS license (MIT-style) since people will have an easier time suing you if it is public domain. :(

    All those are freedoms you have with the GPL.

    In this case they are not since the BSD definition of use (almost any development or running the program) is different than the GPL definition (GPL development or running the program).

    The only restrictions there are are there to preserve the freedom of others.

    A BSD license does this by allowing anyone to do almost anything with the code. You are not bound by more restrictions. Which is freer for you? More restrictions or less restrictions?

    False. You have to give the source code to the people you sell the program to, and you have to give them permission to redistribute and modify it. That's all.

    This is untrue. You are not allowed to sell GPL'd software unless all authors of the software are in agreement with the action. You may charge for the distribution of the software as long as the fee applies solely to the distribution . This is according to the license. As long as someone receives the software, they may request the source by which you, the author(s), must comply.

    And if you're going to be picky, am I free to sell a warrantied version of BSD software? I don't see how I can.

    Yes, you may. You may add a warranty to BSD (or GPL?) software as long as it applies to you. You cannot add a warranty on anything that makes others responsible for what you warranty.
  • The moderators suck. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Inoshiro (71693) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @03:28PM (#14966294) Homepage
    http://www.openbsd.org/donations.html [openbsd.org]

    Once again, with feeling:

    http://www.openbsd.org/donations.html [openbsd.org]

    I already donated today. Cheque, credit card (my preferred method), and Paypal are all easily listed. I guess having the donations link on the main page (just below project goals) was not obvious enough.

  • by Compenguin (175952) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @04:14PM (#14966692)
    This is untrue. You are not allowed to sell GPL'd software unless all authors of the software are in agreement with the action. You may charge for the distribution of the software as long as the fee applies solely to the distribution . This is according to the license. As long as someone receives the software, they may request the source by which you, the author(s), must comply.

    Just because you have to make the source available to anyone who receives the software and you can't limit their redistribution does not prevent you from selling GPL'd software without the authors consent.

    See http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.html#DoesTheGP LAllowMoney [gnu.org]
  • by meme_police (645420) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @07:34PM (#14968226)
    Right here: ftp://ftp5.usa.openbsd.org/pub/OpenBSD/3.8/i386/fl oppy38.fs [openbsd.org] ftp://ftp5.usa.openbsd.org/pub/OpenBSD/3.8/i386/fl oppyB38.fs [openbsd.org] ftp://ftp5.usa.openbsd.org/pub/OpenBSD/3.8/i386/fl oppyC38.fs [openbsd.org] The first will work in most cases, the B and C version include rarer drivers than the first one. Did you bother looking? At all?
  • by Kjella (173770) on Tuesday March 21, 2006 @07:48PM (#14968300) Homepage
    Oh, you mean the required library that makes OpenSSH actually do anything useful, like anything to do with cryptography. Sorry, my bad. I wasn't aware that they weren't maintained by the same people. I've just always assumed OpenSSH itself was the problem (and for the anonymous coward, the OpenSSH page completely ignores this and only the OpenSSL page mentions it). I know debian-legal has had issues with it, apparently because OpenSSL taints OpenSSH and makes them incompatible with the GPL. So what I wanted still stands, I just realized Theo can't do a damn thing about it. Too bad.

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