[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: [libreplanet-discuss] freedom problems in docker

From: Rudolf
Subject: Re: [libreplanet-discuss] freedom problems in docker
Date: Sun, 24 Apr 2016 13:49:54 +0000

When it's plainly outlined like that it seems that the freedom problems in Docker are the same ones encountered with GNU/Linux distributions that have proprietary packages in their package repositories and have those available by default.

Docker itself and additional software are licensed under the Apache 2.0 license. The Docker Hub which stores both proprietary and free/libre packages is not free software but the underlying repository hosting/storage software is licensed under the Apache 2.0.

That means we can do what F-Droid and what free/libre repos for Ubuntu/Debian are doing and provide an alternative repository that only hosts free/libre application containers.

The biggest issue is that the default repository is set to Docker Hub which contains both free and non-free application containers (which can be seen here: They do provide some instructions on using alternative repositories:

Docker Inc. pushes their own trusted registry which has to be paid for with their instructions here:

But they do state that their trusted registry and Docker Hub are both built on the Apache 2.0-licensed "distribution" code base:

The system that does the packaging is Apache 2.0 licensed; GNU Guix is a better approach though but that's neither here nor there.


On Sun, Apr 24, 2016 at 5:24 AM Richard Stallman <> wrote:
  > this is the repository
  > When you want to run container

  > you must type docker run The container in you want to run
  > docker will Download the container from the repository and run it

That means there are three different ethical issues:

* The system that does the packaging.

* What it puts into a container (aside from the program
you want to package).  Of course, if you package a nonfree
program, the container will not be free.  But suppose
you package a free program: is the container free?

* The repository where it stores containers.
You've just said it contains nonfree containers.

Also how are these related?

1. Do they distribute a program with which you can do
packaging on your own computer?  If so, is it free?
(I expect it probably is, but I don't actually know.)

Or does packaging work as SaaSS ?  See

2. To run a container, are you compelled to run it from
their repository?  Or is their repository merely one way
that containers can be distributed?

Thus, I wonder exactly what this means:

  > you must type docker run The container in you want to run
  > docker will Download the container from the repository and run it

When you say "must", is this the ONLY way to run a container,
downloaded straight from the repository?  That method of distributing
them and running them is bad, because (1) if the repository contains
nonfree containers, we don't want to link to it, and (2) when users
run any program straight off someone else's server without the step of
deciding which package to install, that suppresses development and
release of other versions, and modification by the user.

Dr Richard Stallman
President, Free Software Foundation (,
Internet Hall-of-Famer (
Skype: No way! See

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]