Use The Source

Software Freedom Conservancy works for your right to repair and modify the software on your devices. Use The Source shows you how we evaluate the source code candidates companies must provide for GPLed software. Join us as we highlight common issues in source candidates, and what companies need to do to fix them. Check out the options below, or subscribe to our mailing list to participate in the public discussion on these candidates.

Submit a Candidate

One crucial way to get involved is to let us know about any source candidates you find! Many devices have an offer for source code (check the manual or device's user interface to find it) and we'd be very interested to know what they send you when you request it. Here are the steps to submit a new source candidate to list on this page:

  1. find a source candidate offered by a company - normally this is offered to you in the manual or user interface of your device, through a link or email address (the company's GitHub page is not canonical, unless they explicitly say so in this offer)
  2. upload the source candidate to us - write down the file name(s) you uploaded for the next step (can be multiple), and upload a firmware image if you have it and are ok with us publishing it
  3. email us at compliance@sfconservancy.org with the following details:
    Subject: candidate to add: [brand/model]

    manufacturer/brand of device:
    model number of device:
    version number of software on device (if applicable):
    filename(s) of source candidate:
    filename(s) of firmware image (if applicable):
    how the firmware image was acquired (if applicable): [direct from device? download page URL?]
    text of the offer for source (usually required): [write it out, or attach a screenshot/picture]
    where the source or offer for source was found: [manual in box? CD? web page adjacent to firmware download?]
  4. wait 😀 we will respond and/or post your candidate here, within about 7 days (potentially longer until March 2024, due to a grace period offered to companies who contact us)

There are many other ways you can help, regardless of whether you're a developer or not - see our Help Defend Software Freedom and Rights page for details!

Source Candidates List

To join the public discussion of these candidates, please subscribe to our ccs-review mailing list. We re-post especially notable email replies from this community mailing list in the candidate comments, alongside SFC and other official Use The Source comments on each candidate's page linked below. A "round" indicates how many times we've received new candidates for a given device/firmware - if the round is "of N" it means we don't know how many rounds will be needed before we receive a compliant source candidate for the device/firmware.

ThinkPenguin TPE-R1300 round 1 of 1

Released May 11, 2023

This candidate is an image of the CD that is provided in the box alongside the TPE-R1300. Note that in addition to being confirmed as the firmware running on the device, the binary firmware image is also available inside the source CD, in the bin folder.

See more…

TP-Link TL-WR902AC V3 220329 round 4 of N

Released April 7, 2023

These are the source candidate and firmware images provided on TP-Link's website for this product.

See more…

TP-Link Deco X90 V1 1.1.2 round 6 of N

Released Jan. 23, 2024

These are the source candidate and firmware images provided on TP-Link's website for this product. Note that as of 2024-02-02, the version 1.1.2 firmware does not seem to be available on the website anymore, so we are re-posting it here.

See more…

Cisco ESS 3300 round 1 of N

Released May 9, 2023

This source candidate was received through a public offer for source request. The device (a network switch) also goes by the name "Hellcat". The specific source candidate being offered here is for "Hellcat IOSXE Releases 17.6.3-images".

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Cisco ESS 3300 round 2 of N

Released Nov. 28, 2023

This is an update we received from Cisco after reporting the respective issues found in the round 1 candidate at https://sfconservancy.org/usethesource/candidate/cisco-ess-3300-round-1-of-n/

See more…

Cisco ESS 3300 round 3 of N

Released Feb. 2, 2024

This is an update we received from Cisco after reporting the respective issues found in the round 2 candidate at https://sfconservancy.org/usethesource/candidate/cisco-ess-3300-round-2-of-n/ - note that this source candidate only contains the kernel portion of the candidate. Cisco has not provided updates for any other portions of the candidate as of this writing.

See more…

Google Nest Hello round 2 of N

Released Aug. 13, 2020

Found via offer for source code with the device. Note that included repos need to be cloned before use, as this is not the original format Google provided (it was via web links to Git repos) and Google has deleted some of these original Git repos so we are mirroring the complete set we received here.

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John Deere MTG 4G round 1 of N

Released Jan. 13, 2022

This is a source candidate we received from John Deere after exercising Deere's public offer for source for this device.

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Tesla Model S round 7 of N

Released March 30, 2018

We received this source candidate from Tesla as the next iteration of incomplete candidates in a long set we had received. The report we sent them on this candidate has already been published, at https://lists.sfconservancy.org/pipermail/ccs-review/2018-May/000000.html

See more…

Header image adapted from Stars 01 by Mathias Krumbholz (CC BY-SA 3.0 Deed). Icons adapted from Magnifying Glass by Rohith M S, Magnifying Glass by icondesign178 and Upload by sureya from Noun Project (CC BY 3.0)

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