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Debian GNU/Linux FAQ
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13.2 Can Debian be packaged with non-free software?

Yes. While all the main components of Debian are free software, we provide a non-free directory for programs that are not freely redistributable.

CD manufacturers may be able to distribute the programs we have placed in that directory, depending on the license terms or their private arrangements with the authors of those software packages. CD manufacturers can also distribute the non-free software they get from other sources on the same CD. This is nothing new: free and commercial software are distributed on the same CD by many manufacturers now. Of course we still encourage software authors to release the programs they write as free software.


Debian GNU/Linux FAQ
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