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back to article US Navy buys Linux to guide drone fleet

The US Navy has signed off on a $27,883,883 contract from military contractor Raytheon to install Linux ground control software for its fleet of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) drones. The contract covers the Naval Air Station at Patuxent River in Maryland, which has already spent $5,175,075 beginning to install Linux …

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Anonymous Coward

Wrong focus.

While everyone argues about terminology like "buy linux" , or which operating system is best for the job, meanwhile nobody is paying attention to how retarded and fucked up all these wars by all our respective corrupt piece of shit governments are.

If linux is going to be the cause of billions of deaths of the global population by this evil fucking new world order bankster cabal, at some point, preferably before you yourself are targeted for kill list, to quit supporting motherfuckin linux, or to destroy it completely.

But go ahead argue about the details bullshit... in 3, 2, 1

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Coat

Re: Wrong focus.

'evil fucking new world order bankster cabal'

I think you have all the details covered.

Mine's the one with the tinfoil hat in the pocket.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Wrong focus.

buying linux serves no purpose. i use windows with metro every day and it is far more secure than free software. besides, metro hasn't killed anyone yet. you should just relax.

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Re: Wrong focus.

You're trolling, right?

Microsoft will sell Windows for Warships to whoever has the money to buy it. That's willingly sell, as in with full knowledge of what it will be used for.

But hey, that's obviously the same as a bit of freely-distributable software ending up at UAV ground control because it's freely distributable.

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Anonymous Coward

Aussie ambulance computers

"Computers which co-ordinate NSW's ambulances are back online in three of the state's regions after a major virus forced staff to shut them down for more than 24 hours".

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Alien

Re: Wrong focus (@M Gale)

I'll say it up front - I'm a self-confessed, unredeemable Microsoft, Windows Phone and Windows 8 fanjob. I've have yet to see metrics for W8, but I know for a fact that Windows 7 is the most secure *off-the-shelf* OS ever built.

That said, I acknowledge that you can take an OSS Linux distribution and harden the crap out of it by removing everything except what's needed to perform the required task. So if I were willing to forgo flexibility and extensibility for security, *non-COTS* Linux is doubtedly more secure than Windows.

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Re: Wrong focus (@M Gale)

"but I know for a fact that Windows 7 is the most secure *off-the-shelf* OS ever built."

I find your omnipotence awesome !

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Re: Wrong focus.

I do believe our AC@1850 may be on the wrong website. If he wants to discuss world peace and flower power, perhaps the CND or Greenpeace might be more appropriate.

Or - this is a tech website, stupid.

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Headmaster

Re: Wrong focus (@M Gale)

Wouldn't that be omniscience? Though given that, he's probably omnipotent as well...

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Re: Wrong focus (@M Gale)

Actually I think it's more like wishful-thinking

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Non COTS Linux

This would be, one presumes, why the US DOD is the maintainer for SELinux.

After the amount of hardening and custom tweaking a Win box would need, you might as well roll your own!

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Re: Non COTS Linux

My bad.

The US NSA.

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FLAME away

The trojan, in this case :)

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Re: Wrong focus (@M Gale)

Red Hat Enterprise Linux comes with SELinux by default. Since you know it for a fact, please tell us how Windows 7 is more secure.

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Re: Wrong focus.

Sharks will lasers.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Wrong focus.

Metro probably has killed a few people through sheer stress.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Wrong focus.

Those worried that they could become tainted by association with the military should probably stop using the Internet, as it is a commercialised derivative of the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency's ARPANET. Then there's things like navigation systems that make use of GPS, a system developed for and run by the US military.

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Coat

Re: Wrong focus.

Perhaps they were burnt by a windows OEM deal where the licenses couldn't be transferred if the pc died...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Wrong focus.

Read the article carefully. They're switching away from Windows due to a malware outbreak last year.

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@John A Blackley

I forget, is 'bankster cabal' the current code word for 'the Jooose!' or does he actually have to mention them explicitly for 1st place tinfoil hat award?

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Mushroom

Re: sharks

Thats "frickin lasers" to you bud!

Icon, cause you can do that if you've got enough sharks with frinkin lasers pointed at the same point.

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Linux

Re: Wrong focus (@M Gale)

"... but I know for a fact that Windows 7 is the most secure *off-the-shelf* OS ever built" -- sources, please? Direct, "apples-to-apples" comparisons? Benchmarks?

One can buy Red Hat Enterprise Linux "off-the-shelf", so please provide a detailed comparison. Include virus, malware, and trojan testing, using real-life, existing "in the wild" examples.

Otherwise, STFU!

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Re: Wrong focus.

Actually, you make a very good point! I don't want my tax dollars wasted on a license that is non-transferrable. Well, if it is in fact non-transferrable. Otoh, it might be ms access run-time executables getting blown up, not the native, modified-ein win install.

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Mushroom

Re: Wrong focus.

Do you also hate Pb for the fact that it is useful for making bullets? Time to quit supporting motherfuckin' lead? Destroy lead completely?

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Linux

Cheapskates

Someone must be falling behind with their "political contributions".

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Yuk

One of the thoughts that has limited my contributions to open-source projects has been the possibility of something like this happening. You write some code and the next thing you know some bastard is using it to kill people and there is nothing you can do to stop them.

It's like working for a pharmaceutical company on anaesthetic drugs and then discovering that the American government is buying them to use in executions.

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Re: Yuk

I've worked for pharma on many drug projects - whilst I'd be VERY upset if the only purpose was death it's not - ditto with Linux

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Re: Yuk

Well, If you pay taxes you are paying for this stuff more directly. It is hard to support or buy any product and be sure it will not also be used by your enemies.

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WTF?

Re: Yuk

Wow, that's some really fucked up logic there. I suppose we should ban all open source software in case it might be used for some nefarious purpose.

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Re: Yuk

> Wow, that's some really fucked up logic there. I suppose we should ban all open

> source software in case it might be used for some nefarious purpose.

No; but I think open-source projects should consider using licenses that disallow uses that the contributors to those projects would be unhappy about.

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Re: Yuk

> If you pay taxes you are paying for this stuff more directly.

That can be fixed by moving to a different country. Once you've released your code under a license like the GPL, it's irrevocable.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Yuk

On the other, because it's open source the communists/terrorists/mole people may also use the same software for their purposes and perhaps bring the Americans down a peg or two.

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Re: Yuk

There are some open-source-like projects with a no-nefarious-use license (for varying definitions thereof), but...

a) such licenses are, by definition, not open-source, and

b) if the Elbonian military absolutely must have your software as a critical component of its puppy-blending missile, license terms aren't going to stop them.

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Re: Yuk

No, it could still be open source, it would not be FOSS (free and open source).

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Devil

Re: open-source killer projects?

"One of the thoughts that has limited my contributions to open-source projects has been the possibility of something like this happening. You write some code and the next thing you know some bastard is using it to kill people and there is nothing you can do to stop them", Phil Endecott

Yea, not only that, open-source also contributes to global-warming and is used to exploit cheap-labour in the third-world

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Stop

Re: Yuk

'It's like working for a pharmaceutical company on anaesthetic drugs and then discovering that the American government is buying them to use in executions.'

Or like working in a car factory and then discovering that some people use them to run people over. Or like working for a mobile phone company and discovering that some people use the phones as a rudimentary cudgel to brain people with. Or like...

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Happy

Re: Yuk

"Or like..."

Making up an excuse for not doing something one was not going to do anyway. OP is and was pretty pathetic.

Seriously..

ANY code can be used for nefarious purposes. If it wasn't Linux being used for this, it would be something else. The weapons would not stop being made.

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Re: Yuk

That can be fixed by moving to a different country.

moving alone doesn't help if you're an US citizen. You have to lose the citizenship too.

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Not according to the OSD (I think)

http://www.opensource.org/osd.html

See point 6 ("No Discrimination Against Fields of Endeavor")

While the main point of this is to expand the community by allowing commercial use, the general application means that one cannot discriminate against military use much less some difficult to evaluate concept of just war (i.e., what actions are sufficiently unjust). The military certainly does not have a monopoly on injustice--no human being acts perfectly justly.

One also has the problem (even aside from any inability to enforce compliance) that restrictions tend to be insufficiently flexible (e.g., the classic no South African use restriction) or excessively flexible ("do not harm").

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Yuk

> One of the thoughts that has limited my contributions to open-source projects has been the possibility of something like this happening. You write some code and the next thing you know some bastard is using it to kill people and there is nothing you can do to stop them <

Yup, nobody said the world is a fair place to live on.

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Re: Yuk

> That can be fixed by moving to a different country

Indeed. So which country have you moved to?

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Thumb Down

@ Phil Endecott - Re: Yuk

Wrote :- "No; but I think open-source projects should consider using licenses that disallow uses that the contributors to those projects would be unhappy about."

That would be unworkably complex. Let's see just some things I am unhappy about -: out-of-town shopping centres replacing high streets, Antarctica being used for tourism, tractors used to clear rainforest, cars being used for drug smuggling, lorries being used for heavy freight insteat of railways ... do I need to go on with a few hundred more things that make me unhappy??

As it happens, I don't have an issue with putting a rocket into a Somali pirate boat, for example.

The point is, not my particular issues, but the fact that everybody will have loads of different ones. The thing would soon get unworkable.

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Re: Yuk

@Phil Endecott Your flawed logic is staggering. The tool (unless it is single purpose, like an M16) is not at fault. It's the human that puts that tool to use who is at fault. Baseball bats can kill people. Hammers can kill people. CDs and be used to kill people. Any chemist with time on their hand can choose to kill lots of people. Are you trying to suggest that all knowledge/items should be tagged with "Don't do bad things, m-kay?"

And even if they were - do you really think someone who had murderous/lethal intent is going to give two figs about your petty little license? "In the interest of national security, you opinions can GTF" is the response I believe.

Just about anything you do, for anyone at any time could potentially be turned around and used for something you don't like. So does this mean you contribute nothing?

My, you must be a real joy to live with.

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Joke

Re: Yuk

"Any chemist with time on their hand can choose to kill lots of people"

I do it regularly just to keep my hand in !

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Re: Yuk

Did you not read the article? the use of Linux will already break the GPL as they will be linking with GPL C and C++ libraries and not releasing the source.

They're getting around this by keeping all of the code private under secrecy laws and not asserting copyright on it.

It's hardly likely anyone from the open source community will get hold of a drone to examine for GPL violations.

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Re: Yuk

Under GPL, you only have to release the source code to a product if you also release the object code to that product, so that basically means that if they sold their munitions to a third party, then they would have to release the source code, otherwise they don't.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Yuk

"Any chemist with time on their hand can choose to kill lots of people"

Not Just Chemists! I'm sure many of the people reading this blog would be able to kill lots of people using a bit of ingenuity and a few purchases off ebay.

That is why I am against current Gun Laws.

If you want to go mad and kill people, you will do it anyway!

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Vic
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Re: Yuk

> should consider using licenses that disallow uses that the contributors to

> those projects would be unhappy about.

No, absolutely not.

As soon as you retain such "field of use" rights, the software is not Free. The copyright holders have unspecified and capricious rights to veto a recipient's use of the code. That's *at least* as bad a a proprietary licence...

Free software means Freedom - even if we don't like the Freedoms someone else is exercising.

Vic.

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Vic
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Joke

Re: Yuk

> I do it regularly just to keep my hand in !

I notice "hand" is in the singular... :-)

Vic.

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@BlinkenLights

Do you think we should tell him weather reports were a closely guarded military secret in WWII because of their military use?

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