[alsa-devel] alsa-firmware licensing

Tim Jackson lists at timj.co.uk
Sat Jan 5 15:15:31 CET 2008

As part of the Fedora Project [1], I'm trying to package [2] the ALSA 
firmware up for easy distribution to Fedora users.

The trouble is that the licensing seems unclear. Specifically:

a) Several firmwares claim to be under the GPL but don't specify a 
version and don't include source - see 

b) More worryingly, the Emagic EMI 2|6 firmware appears to be under a 
"license" which prohibits ANY redistribution. Quoting from 
emi_26_62/license.txt (my emphasis):

"The firmware contained herein is Copyright (c) 1999-2002 Emagic
as an unpublished work. This notice does not imply unrestricted
or public access to this firmware which is a trade secret of Emagic,
and which ***may not be reproduced, used, sold or transferred to
any third party without Emagic's written consent.***"

Does the ALSA project have special authorisation ("written consent") to 
distribute this? Who within the ALSA project is responsible for the 
-firmware package and might be able to help resolve some of these 
queries? Does anyone have a contact at Emagic (which seems to have been 
bought by Apple) to discuss relaxing the firmware conditions slightly?

Any information most welcome. We'd really like to get the firmware in 



[1] http://www.fedoraproject.org/
[2] https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=217259

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