Legality of Fedora in production environment

Dmitry Butskoy buc at
Fri May 11 13:01:24 UTC 2007

The using of software in business and production environment can be a 
subject for legislative regulation. It can lead to some legal troubles 
of using of distributions like Fedora.

Recently the appropriate laws in my country (Russia) have been 
significantly toughened. Now the police can check for illegal software 
usage by their own initiative (without request from the owner). The tax 
inspection demands that software should be registered at accounts 

During such a checking, the user is obliged now to show all hardcopy 
license documents (with original signatures and stamps). But there are 
no any such things for distros like Fedora, which have been just 
downloaded from Internet, hence the user shows nothing. In this 
situation the police *must* temporarily confiscate system blocks (up to 
2 weeks) for further checking...
Certainly, after the checking period all hardware comes back, but such 
troubles are not allowed for normal business.

Are there any similar troubles in other countries?

How it can be avoided?

Our local linux distributors recommend to not download from Internet, 
but buy their box, which includes CDs accompanied with some license 
facsimile paper (just to show polices at least "something").

Dmitry Butskoy,
Saint-Petersburg, Russia
        Red Hat Certified Engineer 809003662809495

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