Just found this absolute joke at my campus

So the other day I saw a fliar for a USB operating system and I was like "oh cool, someone supporting linux, I'll check it out."

Finally got around to checking it out and it's basically some asshat selling ubuntu and pre-installed ubuntu packages.


Check this shit out. Is this legal? Basically I think you order a USB flashdrive from him and he pre-installs everything you need (as if most of this shit wasn't default with an Ubuntu install anyway), but he says it's an operating system that HE'S making. If he were just ordering a USB stick, installing Ubuntu on it, and being upfront about it that'd be one thing, but there's no mention of the fact that he's just installing Ubuntu other than the fact that the Screenshot he took he was too stupid to remove "Ubuntu Desktop" from.

I doubt he actually makes any money off of this, but it's still greasy.

I believe that you can sell it as a package ie him providing the usb stick with it ready to plug and play,

I believe you can not straight up sell ubuntu. Which may be why he isnt advertising that he is selling ubuntu on a usb drive.

Yeah, it'd be one thing if he was honest about what he's doing and actually educating users, but he's claiming that

"I'm creating a simple Operating System on a USB that buyers can take with
them where ever and plug into any computer, like carrying around a laptop in your pocket.
Now offering different packages to choose from for your IN A FLASH Operating System."

When it's clearly just Ubuntu.

EDIT: Hell you can even see "Install Ubuntu 14.04 LTS" on the desktop icons

As far as being legal... probably. People pay to have techy friends do computer stuff for the all the time. This could be similar enough to fly but... yeah, definitely greasy. The stupid thing here is how he's selling basically nothing (of use that is). Who the hell would buy a flash drive with a linux boot unless they already knew Linux? If they don't know Linux, they can't use it anyway. And if they do know Linux, they'd make the boot themselves. Yeah, I doubt he's making any money on something that dumb.

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These licensing details on the Ubuntu website appear to let him do just that.

Ubuntu 'main' and 'restricted' component licence policy

All application software in both main and restricted must meet the following requirements:

Must allow redistribution. Your right to sell or give away the software alone, or as part of an aggregate software distribution, is important because:
You, the user, must be able to pass on any software you have received from Ubuntu in either source code or compiled form.
While Ubuntu will not charge licence fees for this distribution, you might want to charge to print Ubuntu CDs, or create your own customised versions of Ubuntu which you sell, and should have the freedom to do so.

I've bolded what I feel are the most relevant parts.

Ok, so I didn't know that.

Still seems really greasy though the way he's doing it, but I guess nevermind...

Anyway, this is awkward.

"#TheMoreYouKnow" lol

What makes me laugh a bit is that its a Wix site without a custom URL and his email is a Yahoo account. If this guy were even remotely a developer capable of programming an operating system and then marketing it, he would have not used Wix for a website and would have gotten a domain and set up an email address with it. At least I like to think thats how it would be.

Oh and the price list is hilarious. I could buy a 4GB flash drive for $3.50 at the dollar store and load it with Ubuntu that has all of that software default for no extra cost.

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There's always some confusion over Free Software and the right to sell it.

In simplest terms. Its perfectly legal to sell Free Open Source software.
Free has always meant free as in free speech not free beer. Its a poor English word because of its multiple meanings.

When dialup was the main way to get online, selling distroa on CDs was very common. Many people had sites selling the various distros some as simple as burnt to a basic dist some offering them with nice disk labels/images on the disks.

These days its less common but there's nothing wrong with it.

If he's claiming it as his own distro there's technically still nothing wrong with that either, so long as he doesn't use the Ubuntu branding becuae its normally trademarked. Which for the most part he's avoided. Intentionally or not. If he's going the right way about it is a different question. And I don't think he is.

Remember as well Ubuntu is a collection of other peoples work, and ubutnu sells that too.

Easy solution. Print flyers letting people know he is selling something that is free and put a guide on how to do it yourself.

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Well he saw an opportunity and took it. People are willing to give money to someone for easiest tasks because lack of knowledge. What's that guy is doing is salty and sad, but he will find his customers. I just hope he'll donate some money to Ubuntu :)

While selling it is absolutely legal, claiming he wrote it is not. Since it is free software, he must also include the original copyright notices and provide (or tell people how to get, e.g., by providing a link to canonical) the source code. Part of being free software means he must make his customers aware that it is free software.

Can you nail him with any of this? Nah, probably not. But you might shake him up a little if you start asking about his licensing.

"Hey, can I make copies of this and resell them??" (the answer is yes : )

edit in fact, if it really bugs you, do that. Make your own iso's and undersell him.

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I was thinking about that, but to be honest it didn't seem that many people even looked at or cared about his fliar.

Me and the dude I was working on a project with were the only ones to even grab the little paper stubs to check it out in the first place, and as far as I can tell those fliars are no longer there.

I do want to put up fliars for installing linux though. Not a bad idea.

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No way in fuck is he going to donate to Ubuntu if he's being this facetious about it. I would be shocked if he did though.

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I don't think he's branding it as his own distro or even making any claims that he's going to be maintaining it. He just says he's "Creating an operating system". I think he's basically just installing Ubuntu with a couple packages included depending on what you pay for and hoping to make a quick buck. This wouldn't be too bad if he would just be honest about it, but he's just trying to pray on stupid people. My guess is that nobody has even bothered to buy one though, I would hope nobody trusts someone this unprofessional.

It's a good idea. We look at it as a ripoff because we can do it ourselves, but this guy is actually providing a valuable service. Maybe 1 in 200 people either know how, or would be willing to take the time to learn to install an operating system onto a flash drive.

You are right he should be more clear about what he's doing. When this used to be popular it was always very clear they were providing a service sending you the distro you wanted on CDs but you knew that's what they are doing. He's not so clear about that.

Just had a quick look over his website and i can't believe that he is charging $25 for Libre office... He obviously doesn't know the libre literally means FREE. I was hoping he had a Facebook so i could publicly berate him.

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Ubuntu is free, as in speech, software licensed under the gpl is it not? What he is doing is 100% legal and within his rights and the bounds of his freedom.

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This. Free software is libre as in freedom not price.

However what he is doing its questionably morally wrong considering the prices he lists and his lack of information on what he's actually selling (repackaged custom ubuntu and apps). He might actually be breaking licence agreements either with Ubuntu or the GPL by not providing that info. Its been a while since I looked at somthing like this.

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