Free Software Foundation v. Cisco Systems

Free Software Foundation v. Cisco was a lawsuit initiated by the Free Software Foundation against Cisco Systems on December 11, 2008 in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.[1] The FSF claimed that various products sold under the Linksys brand by Cisco have violated the licensing terms of many programs on which FSF holds copyright, including GCC, binutils, and the GNU C Library. Most of these programs are licensed under the GNU General Public License, and a few are under the GNU Lesser General Public License.[2] The Software Freedom Law Center acted as the FSF's law firm in the case.[3] The foundation asked the court to enjoin Cisco from further distributing Linksys firmware that contains FSF copyrighted code, and also asked for all profits that Cisco received "from its unlawful acts."[4] Cisco stated that they are reviewing the issues in the suit, but they believe to be "substantially in compliance".[5]

The FSF contended that code it held the copyright to was found in the Linksys models EFG120, EFG250, NAS200, SPA400, WAG300N, WAP4400N, WIP300, WMA11B, WRT54GL, WRV200, WRV54G, and WVC54GC, and in the program QuickVPN,[6] which is used to connect VPN clients via the RV and WRV series Linksys routers.[7][8]

On May 20, 2009 the parties announced a settlement which includes Cisco appointing a director to ensure Linksys products comply with free software licenses, and Cisco making an undisclosed financial contribution to the FSF.[9][10]

See also


  1. ^ "Free Software Foundation Files Suit Against Cisco For GPL Violations" (Press release). Free Software Foundation. 2008-12-11. Retrieved 2008-12-12. 
  2. ^ Full Complaint
  3. ^ "SFLC Files Lawsuit against Cisco on Behalf of the FSF" (Press release). Software Freedom Law Center. 2008-12-11. Retrieved 2008-12-12. 
  4. ^ McDougall, Paul (2008-12-11). "Free Software Group Sues Cisco For Open Source Violations".  
  5. ^ Schofield, Jack (2008-12-11). "FSF sues Cisco over Linksys open source code".  
  6. ^ Thomson, Iain (2008-12-11). "Cisco sued by FSF over GPL violation". PC Magazine. Retrieved 2008-12-30. 
  7. ^ "QuickVPN Almost Lives Up to Its Name". eWEEK. 2005-07-11. Retrieved 2008-12-30. 
  8. ^ Linksys page on QuickVPN
  9. ^ FSF Settles Suit Against Cisco
  10. ^ Nancy Goring (May 20, 2009). "Cisco Settles Lawsuit With Free Software Foundation". PCWorld. Retrieved 2009-05-21. 

Further reading

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