Biju Chacko: LinuxOne Redux: Questionable Characters on the Fringe of the Linux Community

[ Thanks to Biju Chacko
for this link. ]

I recently attended a conference and exposition here in
Bangalore called “Bang!Linux”. I ran into some unsavoury people
whose whose actions led me to think a little about our community
and specifically, it’s lack of policing.

“On the second day of the conference I had a little time to look
around at the other stalls. Our stall, the Linux-India stall, was
excellently manned and I was a fifth wheel there anyway. So I
wandered about the exposition, chatting with the various exhibitors
and grabbing all the freebies I could get. I came across an
exhibitor proclaiming that he was the first vendor of an India
specific distro. This naturally interested me, so I took a closer
look. In his stall were several CDs liberally decorated with the
Indian tri-colour. He also had, nauseatingly, a female penguin
named “Peggy” tacked to the wall behind him.”

“I quizzed him a little about his distro. He pompously told me
about how the unfortunate Indian Linux user was forced to settle
for “foreign” distributions that did not cater to their specific
needs. Their distro, on the other hand, was tailor made for Indian
conditions. This all sounded very nice so I wanted to know more.
What had he done to create an India specific Linux distro? He
hemmed and hawwed but declined to give details. After a bit of
work, I learned a couple of things. He was basically selling a
modified RH6.1. He had modified the install so that it would
recognise a SiS 6215 display card. He had also, amazingly, made the
DOS commands “dir”, “copy”, “del” and so on work on Linux! Beyond
that I was unable to get any definite information. This is a Made
for India Linux? Later, a person from the same city as this
exhibitor told me that he had tried out their distribution. As far
as he was able to tell, they had grepped through all the install
scripts and replaced all instances of “Red Hat” with the name of
their company.”