Google Says Maybe Android Is a Linux Fork, So What?

by Developer.com Staff

Google's Chris Dibona defends Google's Android Linux fork, but promises to merge back into the Linux mainline in a couple of years.

Android code was stripped out of the last Linux kernel release because Google failed to provide necessary updates. As a result, a controversy blew up with many in the open source community claiming that Google had forked Linux.

Now Google's top open source program manager Chris Dibona said so what if we did fork Linux.

"This whole [controversy] stinks of people not liking Forking," Dibona wrote in a thread defending Google's position. "Forking is important and not a bad thing at all. From my perspective, forking is why the Linux kernel is as good as it is," reported ZDNet's Paula Rooney.

According to Rooney, Dibona said that Android is "no more [a fork] than Red Hat Enterprise Linux or any other distribution vendor. All kernels are in some way a fork for some amount of time, the trick is keeping that delta small. We're trying to do a better job of keeping a small delta."

This article was originally published on Friday Mar 5th 2010
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