Harald Welte speaking at Black Duck Korea Open Source Conference

gpl-violations.org founder Harald Welte was invited keynote speaker at the Black Duck Korea Open Source Conference 2016

The topic of the presentation was that license enforcement is not an end in itself, but that the community actually wants contributions to the collaborative development model.

License compliance ensures the absolute bare legal minimum on engaging with the Free Software community. While that is legally sufficient, the community actually wants to have all developers join the collaborative development process, where the resources for development are contributed and shared among all developers.

gpl-violations.org at FSFE Legal & Licensing Workshop 2016

From April 13 to 15, the FSFE annual legal and licensing workshop was held in Barcelona, Spain.

gpl-violations.org founder Harald Welte was presenting about his past experience and future plans regarding GPL enforcement, including the plans to establish a membership-based legal entity to re-start the enforcement activities of gpl-violations.org.

gpl-violations.org homepage recovers

While gpl-violations.org founder Harald Welte was immersed in other projects and responsibilities, the gpl-violations.org project has been dormant for some time.

Unfortuantely the homepage was also offline in recent months (apologies for that), which is now finally fixed. All old content has been recovered and is made available again from the web site.

The project mailing lists are planned to be re-started soon.

Actual GPL enforcement activity is expected to resume at some point in 2016.

Regional court Hamburg judgement against FANTEC

The Regional Court of Hamburg [Landgericht Hamburg] found FANTEC GmbH guilty of violating the GNU General Public License in their media player FANTEC 3DFHDL. In the case between Harald Welte versus Fantec GmbH the court decided that FANTEC has to pay a penalty fee plus additional costs for the lawyers, and has to give out the exact information about their chain of distribution of the FANTEC 3DFHDL Media Player.

FANTEC was using the netfilter/iptables software (firewalling software for GNU/Linux) in one of the FANTEC 3DFHDL firmwares offered online. They distributed the firmware without complete corresponding source code as required by the GNU General Public License, version 2 (GPLv2) that governs the netfilter/iptables software. Attempts to resolve this issue failed, after which Harald Welte, one of the copyright holders of iptables, decided to go to court. The court decided that FANTEC acted negligently: they would have had to ensure to distribute the software under the conditions of the GPLv2. The court made explicit that it is insufficient for FANTEC to rely on the assurance of license compliance of their suppliers. FANTEC itself is required to ascertain that no rights of third parties are violated.

"It is great to see that the court acknowledges the fact that vendors themselves are responsible for checking their products for GNU GPL compliance. Especially FANTEC, who already had earlier issues with GNU GPL compliance, should have known better. This was just laziness," says Harald Welte, founder of gpl-violations.org and plaintiff in the case.

The GNU GPL violation was found at a "Hacking for Compliance workshop" of the Free Software Foundation Europe in May 2012 in Berlin. Several volunteers helped checking different devices for GNU GPL compliance. Afterwards the results where forwarded to gpl-violations.org and their lawyers, who followed up on it.

Although FANTEC denied at first, compliance engineers of FSFE and gpl-violations.org were able to prove that the software iptables version 1.3.7 was on the device, even though FANTEC did not include the sources for this program in the provided source code. Besides they showed that the software was compiled on another date than the offered source code, proving that the source code offered by FANTEC was outdated.</para>

"Together with our volunteers we will continue to ensure that users receive the freedom to use, study, share, and improve the software on their products. These are the basic principles of the Free Software community, and every company distributing the software has to comply with the respective licenses. Companies obviously see the benefit in building upon Free Software, and they should stick to these basic and simple rules." says Matthias Kirschner, FSFE's German coordinator and one of the organiser of the compliance workshop.

FSFE provides some easy steps to follow to make your product GNU GPL compliant at https://fsfe.org/activities/ftf/useful-tips-for-vendors.en.html and gpl-violations.org maintains a Vendor FAQ

The Court decision in German is available from http://www.ifross.org/sites/default/files/130618%20Urteil%20Fantec.pdf

Armijn Hemel rertires from gpl-violations.org core team

Today, gpl-violations.org announces that Armijn Hemel is retiring from his position in the coreteam of the project.

Armijn has been at the heart of the tedious day by day operations of the project, handling incoming violation reports, performing GPL compliance engineering and handing over cases to our legal representation.

"Armijn Hemel has been instrumental to the success of gpl-violations.org for more than seven years. His efforts and dedication permitted us to bring compliance of hundreds of formerly GPL-infringing products." says Harald Welte, founder and leader of gpl-violations.org

gpl-violations.org wants to thank for the time and dedication Armijn has been providing to the project for many years. His continuous support will be missed.

Court rejects AVM's claims opposing third party modifications of GPL software

On November 8th the Regional Court of Berlin (Landgericht Berlin) issued its decision in the previously reported case AVM Computersysteme Vertriebs GmbH (AVM) v. Cybits AG (Cybits). In this case, AVM was essentially trying to stop Cybits from modifying GNU GPL licensed Free Software inside of their AVM Fritz!Box products. Yesterday, the court dismissed this principal claim. Thus, it also confirmed that users of embedded devices with pre-installed Free Software have the legal freedom to make, install, run and distribute modifications to this Free Software. The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) and gpl-violations.org, both welcome this decision.

Although the written reasoning of the decision is not available yet, it is clear that the court rejected AVM's claims according to which no third party shall be permitted to alter their products' firmware, even if the GNU GPL components are concerned. Thus, Cybits or anyone else may perform such modifications. Furthermore, under the judgement, Cybits is not prohibited from distributing its software that assists users in making and installing modifications to GNU GPL licensed software (Linux kernel used in the Fritz!Box device).

"I am extremely pleased that the court turned down any request by AVM to control any modification to the GNU GPL licensed components of the Fritz!Box firmware. Enabling and encouraging everyone to innovate based on existing software and products is a key aspect of the Free Software movement.", says Harald Welte, founder of gpl-violations.org and third party intervener on behalf of Cybits in the dispute.

On the other hand, the court upheld an auxiliary claim raised by AVM. In its ruling, it enjoins Cybits from distributing the software only in case it causes the web interface to display a wrong status of the internet connection and web filtering software. "But this is a side issue, the important part is: Free Software gives everybody the right to use, study, share, and improve it. Nobody should be allowed to prevent others from executing those rights", says Matthias Kirschner, FSFE's German coordinator.

The decision can be appealed by either party within one month.

FSFE and gpl-violations.org are committed to encouraging the use of Free Software by companies and developers by making licensing and compliance as easy as possible. Generally it is considerably easier to comply with Free Software licenses than with EULAs and other license agreements for non-Free software. Often it is only necessary to add a copy of the GNU GPL license text to documentation, and add an offer to provide the software source code (see FSFE's compliance tips).

AVM violating license of the Linux kernel

Linux kernel at centre of battle for control of embedded devices

Berlin, 20th June - Tomorrow on June 21st a legal case will be heard before the District Court of Berlin which may have enormous consequences for the way that software is developed and distributed. The adversaries in the case are the manufacturer and distributor of DSL routers AVM Computersysteme Vertriebs GmbH (AVM), and Cybits AG (Cybits) which produces children's web-filtering software. Both companies use the Linux kernel, which is licensed under the GNU General Public License, version 2 (GNU GPL); a Free Software license permitting everyone to use, study, share, and improve works which use it.

The case was brought to court by AVM with the aim of preventing Cybits from changing any parts of the firmware used in AVM's routers, including the Linux kernel. The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) and gpl-violations.org consider AVM's action as a broad attack against the principles of Free Software, and thus against the thousands of individuals and companies developing, improving and distributing Free Software.

"I decided to contribute my work to the Linux kernel under the GNU GPL, and let others benefit from it. I'm happy if companies make a lot of money with software written by me and thousands of others. But in return, when they distribute our software I want them to give others the same rights they received from me", said Harald Welte, founder of gpl-violations.org and copyright holder of several parts of the Linux kernel.

This is however exactly what AVM tried to avoid when in 2010 they filed two actions against Cybits. AVM claimed that when their customers install Cybits' filtering software on AVM routers it changes the routers' firmware and consequently infringes on AVM's copyright. In the opinion of AVM, even changing the Linux kernel components of the firmware is not allowed. The Court of Appeals of Berlin rejected this argument in its decision on the request for a preliminary injunction in September 2010, after Mr. Welte intervened in the case. Now, the District Court of Berlin will have to decide on the issue again, this time in the main proceedings.

"This case has far reaching consequences for the future of Free Software and the GNU GPL. The GNU GPL is a legal license set by the original authors of the software. These terms are not optional" said Till Jaeger from JBB Rechtsanwälte who represents Mr. Welte in this case.

If AVM succeeds in forbidding others from exercising the freedoms explicitly granted by the GNU General Public License terms, it will directly contravene the legal rights of the original authors of the programs, who decided that software freedom and cooperation is more important to them than directly receiving license fees. Moreover, there are also significant economic and business implications. First, it will give device manufacturers the chance to veto software from third parties on their products, resulting in worse products for the user and them being locked-in to purchasing future products from a particular vendor. Second, it will give companies like AVM an unfair advantage over their competitors who are in compliance with the Free Software licenses which they use. Third, it will threaten the cooperative software development model, which has been successfully used by many companies worldwide for three decades.

"AVM is attacking the very foundations of Free Software: They want to take away freedom from others. We have to act when a company sues others for executing their right to modify Free Software. AVM's behaviour must not be tolerated. If they are successful in court it will be disastrous for the global market for embedded devices, which includes mobile phones, network hardware, and other Linux based products" says Matthias Kirschner, FSFE's German Coordinator.

"Ironically, by preventing others from enacting the rights granted by the GNU GPL, AVM itself is in violation of the license terms. Therefore they have no right to distribute the software" says Till Jaeger.

FSFE and gpl-violations.org are committed to encouraging the use of Free Software by companies and developers by making licensing and compliance as easy as possible. Generally it is considerably easier to comply with Free Software licenses than with EULAs and other license agreements for non-Free software. Often it is only necessary to add a copy of the GNU GPL license text to documentation, and add an offer to provide the software source code (see FSFE's compliance tips).

GPL-Violations.org and FSFE's Freedom Task Force to work more closely together

GPL-Violations.org and FSFE's Freedom Task Force to work more closely together

Coordinators of the FSFE Freedom Task Force (FTF) and GPL-Violations.org recently met in Berlin to discuss future cooperation. The two organisations have agreed to deepen their partnership, building on their combined work since the launch of the FTF in October 2006.

GPL-Violations.org will be pro-actively working on cases and seeking resolutions where violations occur. The FTF will continue and expand its educational and networking activities to ensure awareness of best practice and help support people with their use of the licences.

"Since GPL-Violations.org was launched the software market in Europe has changed significantly," states Harald Welte, founder of GPL-Violations.org. "It is a clear, legal fact that distributing Free Software means people must comply with the licences. GPL-Violations.org and the FTF are now building the long-term legal infrastructure for support and compliance."

Key outcomes of the new arrangement between the FTF and GPL-Violations.org include an agreement that GPL-Violations.org will assist the FTF in getting a second full-time staff member. This will help the FTF to deliver services such as answering common licensing questions, offering training and consultancy, resolving licensing issues, helping projects consolidate copyright and acting as a legal guardian for fiduciary programme members.

"GPL-Violations.org has been critical in building understanding of licensing in Europe, and it has also been critical in the development of the FTF," say Shane Coughlan, FTF Coordinator. "I believe our new agreement will help ensure sustainability for legal infrastructure to support Free Software in Europe."

"The key thing now is to look to the future. The FTF facilitates a European Legal Network with coverage of seventeen European countries and over 100 members. I'd like to encourage European businesses and projects with legal counsel, or individual lawyers, to join this network. It provides an excellent forum for sharing knowledge about legal aspects of Free Software licensing and making new contacts."

The Freedom Task Force can be found at http://www.fsfeurope.org/ftf/ The Freedom Task Force can be emailed at ftf at fsfeurope.org

About the Free Software Foundation Europe:

The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) is a non-profit non-governmental organisation active in many European countries and involved in many global activities. Access to software determines participation in a digital society. To secure equal participation in the information age, as well as freedom of competition, the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) pursues and is dedicated to the furthering of Free Software, defined by the freedoms to use, study, modify and copy. Founded in 2001, creating awareness for these issues, securing Free Software politically and legally, and giving people Freedom by supporting development of Free Software are central issues of the FSFE.

About gpl-violations.org

In the past 30 months, gpl-violations.org has helped uncover and negotiate more than 100 GPL violations and has obtained numerous out-of-court settlement agreements. The gpl-violations.org project is a not-for-profit effort to bring commercial users and vendors of Free Software into compliance with the license conditions as set forth by the original authors. The project was founded and is managed by Mr. Harald Welte, a Linux Kernel developer and Free Software enthusiast.

gpl-violations.org files court case against Iliad in France

As part of the Freebox campaign, in cooperation with the FSF France and the busybox authors, gpl-violations.org founder Harald Welte has filed a court case against the french telecom company Iliad.

The particular case is about a device called "Freebox", a DSL customer premises equipment which is extensively using various GPL licensed software, including the Linux kernel and netfilter/iptables. However, the demand of the GPL to provide the complete corresponding source code is not fulfilled. Iliad has been informed about this a long time ago, and has decided to actively deny any responsibility to provide the source code.

This marks the first case in which gpl-violations.org is taking action in a foreign court, following many successful enforcements in German courts over the last couple of years.

gpl-violations.org project prevails in court case on GPL violation by D-Link

DISTRICT COURT OF FRANKFURT ISSUES VERDICT ON GPL VIOLATION OF D-LINK

BERLIN, Germany - September 22, 2006 -- The gpl-violations.org project prevails in court litigation against D-Link Germany GmbH regarding D-Link's alleged inappropriate and copyright infringing use of parts of the Linux Operating System Kernel.

D-Link Germany GmbH, a subsidiary of D-Link Corporation, Taiwan R.O.C., distributed DSM-G600, a network attached storage (NAS) device which uses a Linux-based Operating System. However, this distribution was incompliant with the GNU General Public License (GPL) which covers the Linux Kernel and many other software programs used in the product.

Following-up a legal warning notice, D-Link signed a declaration to cease and desist and agreed to refrain from further distributing the product, but refused to reimburse gpl-violations.org for expenses incurred in connection with the test purchase, re-engineering and legal advice and representation. In the court proceedings, D-Link claimed that the GPL is not legally binding. A quote from the German letter of the D-Link lawyers to gpl-violations.org, dated Feb 24, 2006 can be translated as:

"Regardless of the repeatedly-quoted judgement of the district court of Munich
I, we do not consider the GPL as legally binding."

Since gpl-violations.org has been continuously revealing GPL violations by D-Link since September 2004, it filed a civil case with the district court of Frankfurt (Germany) in March 2006, seeking the court to issue a judgement in support of its copyright claims based on the GPL, and seeking the court to order D-Link to reimburse gpl-violations.org for the expenses of the out-of-court enforcement.

Mr. Harald Welte, Linux Kernel developer and founder of gpl-violations.org states:

"The Free Software community is very happy to see more and more vendors to use Linux and other Free Software in their products. However, Free Software is copyrighted material, much like any other software. Redistribution may only take place in accordance with its license."

On September 6, 2006 the district court issued its judgement, confirming the claims by gpl-violations.org, specifically its rights on the subject-matter source code, the violation of the GNU GPL by D-Link, the validity of the GPL under German law, and D-Links obligation to reimburse gpl-violations.org for legal expenses, test purchase and cost of re-engineering. Only the amount of the legal expenses was considered too high by some insignificant amount of 300 EUR. Therefore, this decision marks a clear-cut victory for gpl-violations.org. D-Link may file an appeal against the judgement.

Mr. Welte continues:

"It was very sad to see D-Link starting to argue that the GPL would not apply . Given D-Link's repeated license violations, it can be thankful that we've never asked for any kind of damages, but merely to cease and desist from further infringements, plus our expenses. I start to wonder whether they actually deserve such a mild strategy."

About gpl-violations.org

In the past 30 months, gpl-violations.org has helped uncover and negotiate more than 100 GPL violations and has obtained numerous out-of-court settlement agreements. The gpl-violations.org project is a not-for-profit effort to bring commercial users and vendors of Free Software into compliance with the license conditions as set forth by the original authors. The project was founded and is managed by Mr. Harald Welte, a Linux Kernel developer and Free Software enthusiast.

GPL Dispute in Austrian health card system resolved

BERLIN, Germany - Feb. 10, 2006 -- The gpl-violations.org project has uncovered and resolved violations of the GNU General Public License (GPL) in the Austrian electronic health card (e-card) system

Specifically, those license violations originate by SV-Chipkarten Betriebs- und Errichtungs GmbH, the company in charge of setting up the Austrian electronic health card system.

According to gpl-violations.org, SVC B.u.E. GmbH used GPL licensed software, including Linux, in the Software running on the "GINA" (Gesundsheits Informations Netzwerk Adapter). "GINA" is installed at every doctor's clinic and acts as a gateway between the Health Information Network and the clinic.

"While there is nothing wrong with using GPL licensed software in commercial products, it is only permitted under certain obligations, such as passing on the license agreement, and making available the full corresponding source code", says Mr. Harald Welte, Linux kernel developer and founder of the gpl-violations.org project.

The gpl-violations.org project continues to uncover similar GPL violations in all kinds of embedded products, including media players, console servers, TV set-top boxes, cellular telephones and networking gear.

Mr Welte continues:

"The Free Software community is very happy to see more and more vendors to use Linux and other Free Software on their devices. However, Free Software is copyrighted material, much like any other software. Redistribution can only happen according to its license."

SVC B.u.E. GmbH now makes available the License Text and a written offer to the complete corresponding source code at http://www.chipkarte.at/esvapps/page/page.jsp?p_pageid=220&amp;p_menuid=60699&amp;p_id=5

About the gpl-violations.org project

In the past 24 months, gpl-violations.org has helped uncover and negotiate more than 60 GPL violations and has obtained numerous out-of-court settlement agreements. The gpl-violations.org project is a not-for-profit effort to bring commercial users and vendors of Free Software into compliance with the license conditions as set forth by the original authors. The project was founded and is managed by Mr. Harald Welte, a Linux Kernel developer and Free Software enthusiast.

Auseinandersetzung um GPL-Konformität der Österreichischen Gesundheitskarte beigelegt

Auseinandersetzung um GPL-Konformit&auml;t der Österreichischen Gesundheitskarte beigelegt.

BERLIN, Deutschland - Feb. 10, 2006 -- Das gpl-violations.org Projekt hat einen Versto&szlig; gegen die GNU General Public License (GPL) im System der Österreichischen Gesundheitskarte (e-card) aufgedeckt und behoben.

Für die Lizenzverletzung beim Aufbau des e-Card Systems war die SV-Chipkarten Betries- und Errichtungs GmbH verantwortlich.

Laut gpl-violations.org setzt SVC B.u.E. GmbH unter der GPL lizenzierte Software, einschlie&szlig;lich Linux, in dem "GINA" (Gesundheits Informations Netzwerk Adapter) ein. Der "GINA" wird in jeder Artzpraxis installiert und agiert als Gateway zwischen dem Gesundheitsinformationsnetz und der Praxis.

"Es ist absolut nicht falsch, unter GPL lizenzierte Software in kommerziellen Produkten einzusetzen, solange die Bedingungen wie Weitergabe des Lizenztextes und des zugehörigen Quellcodes eingehalten werden", sagt Harald Welte, Linux Kernel Entwickler und Gründer des gpl-violations.org Projekts.

Das gpl-violations.org Projekt geht GPL-Verletzungen nach, insbesondere in diversen Embedded-Produkten wie Media-Playern, Konsolen-Servern, TV Set-Top-Boxen, Mobiltelefonen und Netzwerkgeräten.

Herr Welte sagt weiter:

"Die Entwicklergemeinde von Freier Software ist sehr froh darüber, da&szlig; mehr und mehr Hersteller Linux und andere Freie Software in ihren Produkten einsetzen. Trotzdem ist Freie Software wie jede andere Software urheberrechtlich geschützt. Jeglicher Vertrieb darf nur in Übereinstimmung mit den Lizenzbedingungen erfolgen."

Infolge einer au&szlig;ergerichtlichen Einigung macht die SVC B.u.E. GmbH nun den Lizenztext, ein schritliches Angebot zur Quellcodeabgabe sowie den Quellcode selbst unter http://www.chipkarte.at/esvapps/page/page.jsp?p_pageid=220&amp;p_menuid=60699&amp;p_id=5 zugänglich.

Über das gpl-violations.org Projekt

In den letzten 24 Monaten hat das gpl-violations.org Projekt dazu beigetragen, mehr als 60 GPL-Verletzungen zu beheben und zahlreiche au&szlig;ergerichtliche Einigungen zu erzielen oder die Lizenz gerichtlich durchzusetzen. Das gpl-violations.org Projekt ist nicht profitorientiert und hat als ziel, kommerzielle Anwender von Freier Software in Einklang mit den Lizenzbedingungen der Softwareurheber zu bringen. Das Projekt wurde von Harald Welte, selbst Linux-Kernel-Entwickler und aktives Mitglied der Gemeinde rund um Freie Software, gegründet und bis heute von ihm geleitet.

GPL Violation in TARGA Traveller 826T MT32 Notebook, sold at LIDL sale today

TARGA NOTEBOOK IN LIDL SALE OF 01 JUN 2005 VIOLATES GPL

BERLIN, Germany - Jun. 01, 2005 -- The gpl-violations.org project has uncovered violations by TARGA GmbH, a German Notebook Vendor, of the GNU General Public License (GPL).

According to gpl-violations.org, TARGA GmbH used GPL licensed software in the TARGA Quick Media software that is pre-installed on their Treveller 826T MT32 Notbooks.

Sales of the Targa Traveller 826T MT32 notebook just started earlier today at LIDL, one of Germanys largest nationwide low-budget retail stores.

"While there is nothing wrong with using GPL licensed software in commercial products, it is only permitted under certain obligations, such as passing on the license agreement, and making available the full corresponding source code", says Mr. Harald Welte, Linux Kernel developer and founder of the gpl-violations.org project.

The gpl-violations.org project has recently uncovered similar GPL violations in pre-installed media player software on notebook computers of other vendors such as Medion AG.

Mr Welte continues:
"The Free Software community is very happy to see that notebook vendors actually pre-install Linux onto their devices because they're dissatisfied with the bootup time of the popular Microsoft(R) Windows(TM) operating system. However, Free Software is copyrighted material, much like any other software. Redistribution can only happen according to this license."

About the gpl-violations.org project

In the past 16 months, gpl-violations.org has helped uncover and negotiate more than 30 out-of-court settlement agreements. The gpl-violations.org project is a not-for-profit effort to bring commercial users and vendors of Free Software into compliance with the license conditions as set forth by the original authors. The project was founded and is managed by Mr. Harald Welte, a Linux Kernel developer and Free Software enthusiast.

MEDION Notebooks sold at ALDI discounter violate GPL

The most recent notebook models sold at ALDI discounters in Germany and abroad, the Medion MD95500, were shipping in violation of the GNU General Public License.

The notebooks come pre-installed with the Cyberlink PowerCinema Linux software, a custom-tailored mini Linux-Distrubution bundled together with a proprietary media player application from Cyberlink Corp.

However, the product ships without any reference to the GNU GPL, does not include the full corresponding source code and no written offer where the source code can be obtained.

gpl-violations.org project gains preliminary injunction against Fortinet UK Ltd.

FORTINET VIOLATES GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE IN SECURITY PRODUCTS

Munich court grants preliminary injunction halting sales

BERLIN, Germany - Apr. 14, 2005 -- The gpl-violations.org project has uncovered violations by Fortinet UK Ltd., the UK subsidiary of Fortinet Inc., of the GNU General Public License (GPL). According to gpl-violations.org, Fortinet used GPL software in certain products and then used cryptographic techniques to conceal that usage.

As a result of this violation, the Munich district court has granted a preliminary injunction against Fortinet Ltd., banning them from further distribution of their products until they are in compliance with the GNU GPL conditions.

The GPL licenses software without collecting royalties, but requires any distributor to provide the full corresponding source code and a copy of the full license text.

"This violation by Fortinet is especially egregious since the vendor not only violated the GPL, but actively tried to hide that violation," said Harald Welte, Linux Kernel developer and founder of the gpl-violations.org project. "We are not in any way opposed to the commercial use of Free and Open Source Software and there is no legal risk of using GPL licensed software in commercial products. But vendors have to comply with the license terms, just like they would have to with any other software license agreement."

Fortinet offers a variety of Firewall and Antivirus Products (the FortiGate and FortiWiFi product series), on which Fortinet claims to run the "FortiOS" operating system. However, as the gpl-violations.org project uncovered, "FortiOS" is using the Linux operating system kernel and numerous other free software products that are licensed exclusively under the GNU GPL. This information was not disclosed by Fortinet.

Following a warning notice by the gpl-violations.org project on March 17, 2005, Fortinet did not sign a declaration to cease and desist. Out-of-court negotiations on a settlement failed to conclude in a timely manner.

Thus, the gpl-violations.org project was compelled to ask the court for a preliminary injunction, banning Fortinet from distributing its products, unless they are in full compliance with the GNU GPL license conditions.

About the gpl-violations.org project

In the past 15 months, gpl-violations.org has helped uncover and negotiate more than 30 out-of-court settlement agreements. The gpl-violations.org project is a not-for-profit effort to bring commercial users and vendors of Free Software into compliance with the license conditions as set forth by the original authors. The project was founded and is managed by Mr. Harald Welte, a Linux Kernel developer and Free Software enthusiast.

13 Companies at CeBIT receive warning letter regarding their alleged GPL incompliance

Some 13 vendors of commercial software and appliance products present at CeBIT receive an open warning letter against their alleged misuse of GPL licensed software. Those warning letters will be personally handed over to the respective companies at their CeBIT booth by Mr. Harald Welte, free software developer and founder of the gpl-violations.org project.

The list of companies includes high-profile names of the computing industry, such as Motorola, Acer, AOpen, and continues with Micronet, Buffalo and Trendware.

"While the Free and Open Source community is very happy to see more and more vendors adopt Linux and other GPL-licensed software, it is of great importance that those vendors comply with the respective license conditions, just like with any other software" states Mr. Welte.

"The warning notice gives them a chance to fix their products, before someone might get them into legal troubles", he continues.

About the gpl-violations.org project

For more than one year, the gpl-violations.org project tries to bring vendors who use GPL licensed software in their products into license compliance. To achieve this goal, it uses a number of measures, ranging from warning letters over public documentation of GPL violations, up to legal proceedings. In this year, the project managed to conclude more than 25 amicable agreements, two preliminary injunctions and one court order.

Declaration to Cease and desist from ARP DATACON GmbH

Today, the netfilter/iptables project announces it has concluded yet another GPL enforcement. It has received a declaration to cease and desist from <ulink ARP DATACON, the German Vendor of the Claxan NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices.

The products in which GPL-licensed software was found without license compliance were: SA113, SA110, NAS110.

gpl-violations.org project brings TomTom to GPL compliance

The gpl-violations.org project (http://www.gpl-violations.org/) announces yet another successful enforcement of the GNU General Public License(GPL), a license commonly used with Free Software, such as the Linux Operating System Kernel. In an amicable agreement with TomTom B.V. (http://www.tomtom.com/), a Dutch vendor of Navigation Systems, the gpl-violations.org project was able to bring the TomTom GO product into GPL compliance.

The source code for the Linux Operating System Kernel, including TomTom's own modifications, is now made available at http://www.tomtom.com/gpl. Furthermore, other obligations of the GPL such as reproduction of the full license terms will be fulfilled by TomTom B.V.

As part of the agreement, TomTom will show it's appreciation of the Free Software and technology enthusiast movement by making a significant donation to the Chaos Computer Club (http://www.ccc.de/).

"We are happy about the productive and friendly attitude of TomTom B.V. while resolving this licensing issue", says Harald Welte, one of the copyright holders of the Linux Operating System Kernel and founder of the gpl-violations.org project.

About the gpl-violations.org project

The gpl-violations.org project is a volunteer-based effor to make corporate distributors of GPL-licensed Free Software aware of the licensing issues involved with GPL-licensed software.

For any reported case of GPL license violations, it will try to locate the respective copyright holders and inform them about possible actions to bring their product in compliance.

gpl-violations.org is founded and run by Harald Welte, a long-term contributor and developer of GPL-licensed software.

About TomTom B.V.

TomTom B.V. is a Dutch based vendor of navigation software and navigation appliances.

The Product TomTom GO is an ARM-based embedded computer running the Linux operating system and TomTom's proprietary navigation software.

About CCC e.V.

Chaos Computer Club e.V. (CCC) is Germanys leading hacker organization, established 1983. It discusses recent advances in information technology, and aims at raising public knowledge and awareness about the consequences.

Interest groups within CCC include: Biometrics, Data Protection, IT Security, Copyright, Software Patens.

netfilter/iptables project announces agreement on GPL licensing with Gigabyte

The netfilter/iptables project (http://www.netfilter.org/) announces another successful enforcement of the GNU General Public License(GPL), a license commonly used with Free Software, such as the Linux Operating System Kernel. In an agreement with Gigabyte Technologies B.V., the European subsidiary of Gigabyte Technology Co. Ltd. in Taiwan (http://www.giga-byte.com/), the netfilter/iptables project was able to bring the Gigabyte BR404W and B49G products into GPL compliance.

The source code of the GPL-licensed components such as the Linux Kernel and the iptables packet filter is now made available via the Gigabyte Support Homepage.

Furthermore, other obligations of the GPL such as reproduction of the full license terms will be fulfilled by Gigabyte.

As part of the agreement, Gigabyte will show its appreciation of the Free Software movement by making a donation to the netfilter/iptables project.

"We are very happy about the positive attitude of Gigabyte while resolving this licensing issue", says Harald Welte, chairman of the netfilter/iptables project and founder of the gpl-violations.org project.

About the netfilter/iptables project

The netfilter/iptables project provides state-of-the-art network security software for Linux firewalling, packet filter and network address translation (NAT), distributed as Free Software under the terms of the GNU General Public License. Being part of the linux operating system kernel, the software is running on virtually every Linux installation.

About Gigabyte Technologies B.V.

Gigabyte Technologies B.V. is the European Subsidiary of Giga-Byte Technologies Co. Ltd, one of the worldwide largest suppliers of PC Motherboards. Gigabyte also offers Graphic Adaptors, Notebooks and also Peripherals such as the Wireless Routers BR404W and B49G, which incorporate the netfilter/iptables packet filter.

About the gpl-violations.org project

The gpl-violations.org project is a volunteer-based effor to make corporate distributors of GPL-licensed Free Software aware of the licensing issues involved with GPL-licensed software.

For any reported case of GPL license violations, it will try to locate the respective copyright holders and inform them about possible actions to bring their products into compliance.

gpl-violations.org is founded and run by Harald Welte, a long-term contributor and developer of GPL-licensed software.