Re: How to use gksu to safely run a non-open-source application?

Petri Kanerva wrote:

<>Well, why use realplay?
Try mplayer ( that's open-source..
You need the realplayer-codec for it to play the stream, but you can get
the needed codec from their page.


I think you are missing the point.

Mplayer is open-source, but the RealPlayer codec is not. It might be a codec, pure and simple. Or, it might do many other things. It might contain code to collect information on which files are played and upload them. It might attempt to detect files acquired via peer-to-peer software and alert the MPAA. It might contain a keystroke logger for harvesting passwords!

Using a closed source codec in an otherwise open source system defeats the security advantage of open source. I have no reason to believe that RealNetworks is unethical. But, it is prudent to assume that sooner or later an apparently trustworthy corporation will do something underhanded. I'm trying to use closed source code in a restricted way that does not require me to rely on blind faith. Considering what happens on the Internet every day, paranoia is a reasonable attitude.

If you have downloaded RealPlayer, check the Real Networks licence agreement, especially paragraphs 7 - Automatic Communication Features and 9 - Digital Rights Management Systems.

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