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I am a newbie to linux and have fedora 5 installed but cannot get my wireless adapter working. I have seen linspire as being easy for newbies and has lots ...
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  1. #1
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    need infor bout linspire


    I am a newbie to linux and have fedora 5 installed but cannot get my wireless adapter working. I have seen linspire as being easy for newbies and has lots support but I have just seen someone mention that to download stuff from linspire costs money. Is this correct. I thought linux had to be provided free. I have just downloaded the iso but dont want to install it if aything else needs to be paid for.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enigma 2100
    I am a newbie to linux and have fedora 5 installed but cannot get my wireless adapter working. I have seen linspire as being easy for newbies and has lots support but I have just seen someone mention that to download stuff from linspire costs money. Is this correct.
    Welcome to the forums, and to Linux. Linspire is one of a few commercially-sold versions of Linux out there (the group includes Xandros, Turbolinux, and a few others). Until recently the only way to get a hold of Linspire was to pay for the distribution (around $50USD). Even then, if you wanted to use their Click N Run Warehouse application to install things you had to subscribe to it for $5USD a month. If you purchased it you got 6 months free.

    Now however that is not the case. Linspire offers a free version called Freespire, downloadable from their website. Also, the basic Click N Run Warehouse service is now available for free, even if you don't purchase Linspire and use Freespire instead. I recommend digging around a bit on the Linspire and Freespire sites for more information:

    http://www.linspire.com
    http://www.freespire.org

    I thought linux had to be provided free.
    That's a common misunderstanding. Linux operates under the idea of "free as in speech" but not necessarily "free as in beer". What this means is that if I wanted to download the sourcecode for Linux, change it, and then burn it to a CD and sell it I'm perfectly able to do so. What I can't do is keep the changes I made to myself and not allow other people to download and use them.

    Linux distributions can be sold, and are in many retail outlets in my country (USA) and others. However for every one commercially sold distribution of Linux there are 100 freely-downloadable ones, often of the same quality.

    I have just downloaded the iso but dont want to install it if aything else needs to be paid for.
    As far as I know, you're fine. You should be able to install and use that ISO without having to pay any licensing fees. This is typical of most Linux distributions.
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    Thanks for the info. I know they can sell the distro but my understanding was they had to also provide the source code ((not sure bout this bit) and compiled programs). Basically everything they sell has to be prvided free in basic form. So if you pay for it you get a nice package and support but you can also download for free a basic version and are on your own. Thats how I understand it.

    So with linspire I have freespire which I know I can install and use for free but its the rest. The packages they say they provide and specifically in my case wireless support. I dont want to install it if I would have to pay for wireless support. If they provide a nice easy to use driver but you have to pay for it that defeats the object. I want to move away from Windows because of the cost. There is no point me moving to linux if I end up having to pay for everything. The stuff they provide by CNR can it also be downloaded free or are there programs in CNR that you can not get free at all.

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    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enigma 2100
    Thanks for the info. I know they can sell the distro but my understanding was they had to also provide the source code ((not sure bout this bit) and compiled programs). Basically everything they sell has to be prvided free in basic form. So if you pay for it you get a nice package and support but you can also download for free a basic version and are on your own. Thats how I understand it.
    You've got the general idea, yes, but nowhere in the GPL does it say the company has to provide compiled programs. They must provide the source, yes, but not necessarily a verbatim free version. Redhat is a good example of this. Companies have taken the source code for Redhat Enterprise Linux, compiled it and removed any Redhat-trademarked art, and then repackaged it as a free distribution (CentOS).

    So with linspire I have freespire which I know I can install and use for free but its the rest. The packages they say they provide and specifically in my case wireless support. I dont want to install it if I would have to pay for wireless support. There is no point me moving to linux if I end up having to pay for everything. The stuff they provide by CNR can it also be downloaded free or are there programs in CNR that you can not get free at all.
    Most of the software they provide on CNR is available for free other places (such as the Debian Apt repository). There are a few commercial applications such as their DVD player, StarOffice, and a few others that are not available for free. (OpenOffice is an open-source derivative of StarOffice, by the way.)

    You're not going to have to "pay for everything" by using Linux. Linspire is by far the minority in that they charge for anything at all. It's likely that the wireless drivers you can get from them are simply a packaged version of NDISWrapper, a very common free piece of software that can be found here:

    http://ndiswrapper.sourceforge.net
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    Linux User glussier's Avatar
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    So with linspire I have freespire which I know I can install and use for free but its the rest. The packages they say they provide and specifically in my case wireless support. I dont want to install it if I would have to pay for wireless support. If they provide a nice easy to use driver but you have to pay for it that defeats the object. I want to move away from Windows because of the cost. There is no point me moving to linux if I end up having to pay for everything. The stuff they provide by CNR can it also be downloaded free or are there programs in CNR that you can not get free at all.
    You don't have to pay a penny for Linspire and you don't have to pay for CNR either. The only time you have to pay, is for commercial software, but it is the same for other distros. Commercial software is never free.

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    techieMoe thanks for the info. The problem I have at the moment is I can't get ndiswrapper to work. I have posted many questions in the redhat/fedora forum without success. I also have a Asus driver for my adapter but can't get it to work. This is why I am looking at linspire (freespire).

    glussier commercial software is by definition sold. My question relates to open source licensing and how it relates to linux. My understanding is a commercial linux package still has to have the source code provided free. Its after that, that it gets a little confusing. As in do companies have to provide compiled version which techieMoe has answered. In other words whatever a company sells, somewhere online is the source code which can be compiled into a working version.

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    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enigma 2100
    glussier commercial software is by definition sold. My question relates to open source licensing and how it relates to linux. My understanding is a commercial linux package still has to have the source code provided free.
    Well, not necessarily. I think your confusion lies in the licenses used for software. Most Linux software is released under an open-source license such as the GNU Public License (GPL), which states that the source code for the application must be made available on request. This is not the most popular type of license in the commercial software world.

    Most commercial software that isn't designed for Linux is released under various proprietary, closed-source licenses that do not give the end user any rights to use or even request to view the source code for the application.

    Some companies release closed-source software for Linux and charge for it. These programs are not licensed under the GPL and therefore are not legally bound to offer any access to the sourcecode.

    Other companies release open-source software (licensed under the GPL) but charge for the distribution of it (such as Xandros). Any changes they make to the Linux kernel or other GPL-licensed software must be made available on request, however any code they themselves made and did not license under the GPL does not have that limitation.

    In other words whatever a company sells, somewhere online is the source code which can be compiled into a working version.
    Yes, but only if the software they sell is licensed under the GPL.
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    Quote Originally Posted by techieMoe
    Most commercial software that isn't designed for Linux is released under various proprietary, closed-source licenses that do not give the end user any rights to use or even request to view the source code for the application.
    I was only refering to linux software not any other licensed software.

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    I have Linspire on my son's computer becasue it is windows like and easy to use... Plus, he loves it! He is all proud because he installed the Linux Force Wallpaper

    ALL of the updates and most of the software is FREE... You only pay for commercial products... Hope that bhelps...

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    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enigma 2100
    I was only refering to linux software not any other licensed software.
    Still, whether the software is released or Linux, Mac OS X or MS Windows, it depends on the license under which it is released as to whether the source code is available.
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