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As our name suggests, we provide HP-UX-ported source and binaries of public domain, freeware and Open Source software. This brings with it some pre-requisites before a package can appear on our archive:

  • Source code must be available for most, if not all, of the package. Public domain/freeware/Open Source software thrives on the unrestricted re-distribution of source code - this allows for porting to other platforms, bugs to be fixed and enhancements to be made without having to wait for the author to fix the software. Any changes we make (other than simple configuration) are fed back to the original author to (hopefully) be rolled into the next release. Examples of HP-UX packages without any source at all include HP's Java JDK/JRE, various Netscape products (e.g. Web server, proxy server, but not including Mozilla or Firefox of course), HP-UX patches and demo/time-restricted binaries of shareware or commercial applications.

  • No shareware or commercial applications. On a few occasions, previously free (Open Source) UNIX software has suddenly become shareware or even commercial. Shifting a previously free piece of software to shareware or commercial means that we can longer update to the latest version, plus it encourages a "branching" of the source code at that point, with other users taking up the last free version and enhancing it independently.

  • There should be no legal restrictions for the package on any of our official archive sites. The most obvious sticky area here is encryption, which still has surprisingly punitive restrictions in most countries. With having many mirror sites in different countries, the "import/export" situation becomes extremely hard to resolve, hence we've taken the safe route and avoided such well-known packages as PGP, although we'd ideally like to include those on the archive.

  • There should be no copyright infringements by the packages on our archive. Some algorithms (e.g. LZW compression used in the creation of GIF files) have patents on them that the patent holders actively pursue. With the LZW case, we have left it to the authors to state their intentions (many have either switched to PNG format or put in an option not to compile LZW support into the software) - it's the authors who are liable to pay possible royalties, not distributors or end-users.

    Another recent example was the spate of Tetris clones that we had on our archive. We were contacted by The Tetris Company L.L.C (who hold the copyright on the Tetris concept) and told to remove them. We duly did so of course, even though we weren't the authors or the original distributors of the software.

Where to find the most popular packages that we don't carry

To alleviate the problem of not being able to carry certain packages, here is a list of what we consider the ones most often requested:

  • Firefox and Thunderbird
    Leading-edge Web browser and mail client for HP-UX.

  • Sun Java System Web Server 7.0 Update 4
    If you really, really must avoid using the world's most popular (and best and free) Web server (apache2), then this is the second best alternative, which is now apparently free since no doubt Sun didn't sell too many copies...

  • Java JDK/JRE
    HP's own Java Development Kit and Runtime Environment. Note that HP are only supporting HP-UX 11.X with this software, plus you will need to install some OS patches to fix problems.

  • International PGP 6.5.8
    Used to encrypt e-mail messages, this is the latest UNIX source code release (lagging slightly behind the Windows and Mac commercial client version, but it's compatible with it). For the first time, the site now has pre-compiled HP-UX binaries too.

  • HP-UX patches
    Ideally, we'd like to carry these on the archive in order to offer 3 extra download sites (and a different Web user interface) in addition to HP's two. However, we can't do this, so you can download the patches from the US or European SupportLine FTP site (tip: download the catalog file first and use it to find what you're after). There are equivalent US and European SupportLine Web sites, but you must register with a username and password first.