XDA News Articles

Mario Tomás Serrafero · Mar 31, 2015

Xiaomi Finally Releases Kernel Sources

If you are familiar with Xiaomi, you might have heard that they are not the most compliant when it comes to the General Public License that makes the core of Android open to us. The terms of the GPLv2 state that since the Android kernel is based on the Linux kernel, which is licensed under GPL,v2 Android has to be open-source for everyone to study or modify, and those that modify the Android kernel have to make their sources immediately available for...

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Mario Tomás Serrafero · Feb 21, 2015

Free Software Philosophy Part 1: On Knowledge & Education

“Free software” means software that respects users' freedom and community. Roughly, it means that the users have the freedom to run, copy, distribute, study, change and improve the software. Thus, “free software” is a matter of liberty, not price. To understand the concept, you should think of “free” as in “free speech,” not as in “free beer”. We sometimes call it “libre software” to show we do not mean it is gratis. - GNU & Free Software Foundation Free or open...

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Mario Tomás Serrafero · Feb 19, 2015

GPL License Controversy, Once More

Here at XDA we don't just value Open Source, we thrive on it. The fact that Android was openly distributed in its entirety was key for our community's growth, and without that particular development we would not be here now in this way.  We have over 6 million registered members, and we are visited by huge amounts of guests as well. Almost half a million of our users are active and tens of thousands are on our forums every second discussing technology....

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Mario Tomás Serrafero · Jan 16, 2015

GPLv2 and Its Infringement by Xiaomi

Xiaomi has announced their spectacularly spec'ed Mi Note Pro, which features the latest in Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processors alongside a big 2K display and 4GB of RAM for a killer price. That being said, there’s something that is not-so-good about Xiaomi’s offerings that is a concern to many developers, especially many found here on XDA: Xiaomi's repeated violations of the GPLv2 license for the Linux kernel which Android (and thus Xiaomi's devices), is built on. Xiaomi is not the only company...

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Tomek Kondrat · Jan 1, 2015

Xiaomi Releases Kernel Source for Redmi 1S

In terms of sales, Xiaomi has become one of the leading OEMs in Android ecosystem. Despite its popularity--especially in Asia--Xiaomi isn't a commonly discussed topic on XDA. This is in fact due to the potential negative ramifications of indirectly supporting a company that routinely violates GPL licensing, and in effect violates XDA's rules. In the last few years, we've actually seen quite a few reports of this OEM violating the GPL, as well as using the hard work of third party...

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Samantha · Aug 10, 2013

Sony Releases Open Source Files for the Xperia Z Ultra and M

"Good Guy Greg Sony". It's a rather affectionate title that Sony's been given for the past few months, particularly for their leading track record in GPL compliance as displayed on multiple occasions. So to make sure that they're continuing their fairly extraordinary performance, they've just released the open source files for the recently announced Xperia Z Ultra and M. Much in the spirit shown by Sony back with the Xperia Z, the company's gone ahead to make sure developers can...

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Pulser_G2 · Jul 2, 2013

OEMs and GPL Compliance

At XDA, we like open source. In fact, you could say we love it. We have a GPL policy to ensure users understand the best ways to follow the GPL, and ensure others can make use of their work to improve all our devices. Unfortunately though, OEMs often lag behind the efforts of the hobbyist third-party developers. While some OEMs are very commendable with their source releases (namely Sony, on numerous occasions, going above and beyond what is GPL licensed, releasing AOSP...

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Jimmy McGee · Jun 13, 2013

Attorney Daniel Nazer to Talk Patent Trolls at XDA:DevCon 2013

Daniel Nazer is a Staff Attorney on the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s intellectual property team, focusing on patent reform. Daniel has a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Western Australia, an M.A. in philosophy from Rutgers, and a J.D. from Yale Law School. He also practiced at Keker & Van Nest, LLP, where he represented technology clients in patent and antitrust litigation. You may be saying to yourself, “That’s great for Daniel! But, why should I care?” Well you should...

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jerdog · May 17, 2013

Sony Continues AOSP Initiative on the Tablet Z

Sometimes, you can harp on a subject so much that you end up beating a dead horse. In our eyes, this is not one of those instances. Enough can't be said for companies that take Open Source seriously, as well as their responsibility to contribute back to the very community that helps to boost adoption rates for their devices. Sony Mobile is one of those companies that gets it. They have contributed to the open source community with their DASH code,...

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Conan Troutman · May 2, 2013

XDA University: Adding Features to Your Freshly Compiled Kernel

We've previously covered step-by-step guides on how to compile your own kernel from source. Simply compiling some readily available source code though is only half the battle. For there to be any benefit of compiling and flashing your own kernel, you're going to need to make some modifications. Which particular changes you make is of course entirely up to you, and there are a huge number of improvements that can be made at kernel level to improve the performance of...

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jerdog · May 2, 2013

Oppo Find 5 Receiving Open Source Project Love

Here at XDA, you've probably seen us talk about collaboration. The dictionary defines collaborating as "to work with another or others on a joint project." We take collaboration seriously, so much so that we actually frown when we see members of the community not take it as seriously. What makes us even more upset is when manufacturers don't take it seriously, though that rant is for another day. There have been numerous instances of OEMs that have claimed to be “developer-friendly,” but whose actions spoke louder than their words. On...

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Will Verduzco · Apr 11, 2013

Kernel Source Released for Some HTC One Variants and the Droid DNA

OK. It's no big secret. The HTC One is a great and exciting device. You've heard us talk about it---everything from the launch event and preliminary benchmarks to giving the device and its carrier variants a place on our forums. Now, we have kernel source for some One variants, which is great news for those looking to start development work for HTC's latest flagship. And since the device was only recently launched, with many carrier variants still pending release, HTC has done...

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jerdog · Jan 26, 2013

An Official Alpha Release WITH Kernel Source? Who Does This Sort of Thing?

Here at XDA, we take the responsibility of carriers and OEMs to provide timely updates to their devices (and to honor their GPL requirements) seriously. There are those who do a good job (Samsung is one of them), those who don't always do a good job (HTC, Motorola, LG), and those who do a terrible job (Huawei, ZTE, Rockchip to name a few). But there is one who right now is doing a terrific job, and that is Sony Mobile. Back...

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azrienoch · Dec 30, 2011

HTC Kingdom Source Code Released

I made a mistake.  A few days ago I reported that, with a slew of new kernel source codes posted on HTCdev, HTC is now GPL compliant.  That wasn't true.  I found out after saying it again on XDA TV.  On Twitter, @gu1dry said, @azrienoch Just finished the new XDA TV video, issue with the end, @HTC still hasn't released source code for the Evo Design... :/ That was true.  Somehow, I overlooked the HTC Kingdom (HTC EVO Design 4G and HTC Hero...

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Jase Glenn · Dec 23, 2011

M10Tools Going Open Source: Dev(s) Needed

M10Tools is going open source! Need I say more? Okay, for those of you who don't know about M10Tools, I'll explain. In a nutshell, it's a program that allows you to edit HTC Sense. Normally Sense is very challenging to edit directly, but with M10Tools a world of opportunity opens up to people with coding skills. Over the past few months things have really taken off, and now the developer wants to take it open source! There's a snag in...

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azrienoch · Dec 21, 2011

HTCdev Releases 8 New Source Codes

HTCdev just released kernel source codes to eight new devices and their varying regional versions, and source codes for updates.  This brings HTC up to compliance with the GPL. Here's the list: Desire S (Europe, HTC Asia India, HTC TUR, Bouygues FR, HTC Arabic) Flyer (HTC WWE Honeycomb update) Explorer (HTC Asia HK CHT, HTC Asia WWE, HTC Asia SEA WWE, Orange UK) Sensation (T-Mobile US) Incredible S (HTC WWE, HTC TUR, BrightStar SPA) Droid Incredible (Verizon WWE) Vivid 4G...

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