The Gamemaster BBS

The place to talk about the iconic BBS era
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enusbaum
Posts: 17
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Re: The Gamemaster BBS

Post by enusbaum »

daniel_spain wrote:
> ok so that answers my main question. Sweet you need a valid reg, but who decides it
> validity?

The registration routine the Module has in place is run as is. The x86 assembly is executed on an emulated x86 i286 CPU core. BTURNO is treated just as a string that can be set in appsettings.json. No different than the value saved to GALGSBL.DLL (just in a more accessible form)

> your intentions are good but there is someone else always willing to use it for evil.
> I mean believe it or not galacticomm used to have a guy that single handedly verified
> systems online for a valid reg# even Lance himself put a backdoor in majormud so you
> could see
> the bbs's reg# so it used to be a highly policed system.
> There are still people out there that think anything bbs related should be free, open
> sourced,
> and available to all. Some forget the blood sweat and tears people put into this
> stuff to make
> it work.

At the end of the day, I can't control how people use the platform. MBBSEmu does not encourage piracy any more/less so than DOSBox, VirtualBox, VMWare, etc. I disagree with the statement of anyone being able to "use MBBSEmu for evil". People running cracked/keygen software can do so on WG3NT/WG2/MBBS just as easily as MBBSEmu.

From my discussions with ISV's, it's their "blood, sweat, and tears" that made then want to support our project in the first place. It's the best opportunity they've had in the past decade to reach a new audience.

> I see you're a reverse engineer...... i took the tele-arena source code that is
> floating around
> the internet with that LIB file and recreated that LIB file (5 C files) through just
> hard work,
> failure, and determination until i replicated the original game api 100% (took 5
> years)
> and i did it because i enjoy it but the heat i take when i wont give people "the
> source"
> it amazes me.... noone is interested unless the "source is included" so yes
> there are
> people who will use your project for evil. But again im not against it, hey do you.
> if its what you enjoy have at it

I'm a little taken aback by the reaction by some in the community towards the project. Most have been very supportive (vocally and financially) -- but there are always detractors. I first came to these forums after the announcement to congratulate the new maintainer and lend my hand to support it any way I can. We're all fighting for the same side on different fronts.

Why we can't coalesce as a group of enthusiasts vs. arguing over ownership or slinging around passive legal threats is sincerely disheartening if that is truly the state of things.
Developer, Reverse Engineer, MBBS/WG Enthusiast
Maintainer of The MajorBBS Emulation Project (MBBSEmu)

Questman
Posts: 136
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2020 2:12 pm
Location: Raleigh, NC
Contact:

Re: The Gamemaster BBS

Post by Questman »

My point is that there's no conceptual difference running the modules in an emulator or the software itself. Both for practical purposes execute the code that represents the module. Seems to me the Emulator's main benefit is getting around licensing, terms of service, and the intellectual property rights of the owners.

If the community has been getting free or almost-free licenses to the DOS and NT-based versions of Worldgroup it seems to me that the emulator provides dubious benefit to the community and probably serves to fragment it even more than it already was.

All the emulator does is replicate the functions that the Major BBS provides and the Major BBS/WG is available and always has been. What's the point, other than to violate copyright and fragment the community. It's NOT the same as DOSBox, VMWare, etc. It's not a hypervisor or virtualization engine. It doesn't provide hardware emulation. It literally goes around the BBS system to allow people to run modules in something that pretends to be the BBS system.

Call it what it is, Eric, but it's of dubious benefit outside of piracy, and you know that well. I'm surprised you're surprised, as you've been taking money for subverting copyright. It's not like you're a good guy in this.
Founder, The Major BBS Restoration Project
Owner, Elwynor Technologies ISV
Former Owner, Galacticomm IP (2005-2020)
Contributor, Galacticomm IP baseline

User avatar
enusbaum
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2020 4:47 pm
Location: Charlotte, NC
Contact:

Re: The Gamemaster BBS

Post by enusbaum »

Questman wrote:
> My point is that there's no conceptual difference running the modules in an
> emulator or the software itself. Both for practical purposes execute the
> code that represents the module. Seems to me the Emulator's main benefit
> is getting around licensing, terms of service, and the intellectual
> property rights of the owners.
>
> If the community has been getting free or almost-free licenses to the DOS
> and NT-based versions of Worldgroup it seems to me that the emulator
> provides dubious benefit to the community and probably serves to fragment
> it even more than it already was.
>
> All the emulator does is replicate the functions that the Major BBS
> provides and the Major BBS/WG is available and always has been. What's the
> point, other than to violate copyright and fragment the community. It's NOT
> the same as DOSBox, VMWare, etc. It's not a hypervisor or virtualization
> engine. It doesn't provide hardware emulation. It literally goes around
> the BBS system to allow people to run modules in something that pretends to
> be the BBS system.
>
> Call it what it is, Eric, but it's of dubious benefit outside of piracy,
> and you know that well. I'm surprised you're surprised, as you've been
> taking money for subverting copyright. It's not like you're a good guy in
> this.

Hey Rick --

I encourage you to take a closer look at DOSBox as it's not a hypervisor, but runs an emulated CPU much like MBBSEmu.

https://sourceforge.net/p/dosbox/code-0 ... k/src/cpu/

Additionally, emulation of host environment API's is not new and has been around for decades. MBBSEmu does not promote piracy of MBBS/WG modules no more so than WINE promotes piracy of Windows programs because it provides emulated WIN32 APIs in a Linux environment.

I think to view of the ecosystem for WG/MBBS as "32-Bit programs on Windows forever, and that's good enough" is myopic and one that I don't share. Based on download statistics for MBBSEmu, the community doesn't share as well. The majority of our users have downloaded MBBSEmu have downloaded the Linuix or OSX versions in higher numbers than the win32/win64 builds.

Also to your point of subverting copyright, I'm not entirely sure what you mean by this.
Developer, Reverse Engineer, MBBS/WG Enthusiast
Maintainer of The MajorBBS Emulation Project (MBBSEmu)

Questman
Posts: 136
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2020 2:12 pm
Location: Raleigh, NC
Contact:

Re: The Gamemaster BBS

Post by Questman »

enusbaum wrote:
>
>
> I encourage you to take a closer look at DOSBox as it's not a hypervisor, but runs an
> emulated CPU much like MBBSEmu.
>
> https://sourceforge.net/p/dosbox/code-0 ... k/src/cpu/
>
> Additionally, emulation of host environment API's is not new and has been around for
> decades. MBBSEmu does not promote piracy of MBBS/WG modules no more so than WINE
> promotes piracy of Windows programs because it provides emulated WIN32 APIs in a
> Linux environment.
>
> I think to view of the ecosystem for WG/MBBS as "32-Bit programs on Windows
> forever, and that's good enough" is myopic and one that I don't share. Based on
> download statistics for MBBSEmu, the community doesn't share as well. The majority of
> our users have downloaded MBBSEmu have downloaded the Linuix or OSX versions in
> higher numbers than the win32/win64 builds.
>
> Also to your point of subverting copyright, I'm not entirely sure what you mean by
> this.

Way to choose one item from a list and argue it, classic red herring argument. I'm well aware of what DOSbox does.

My point is this. Your work adds little to the community. If you have the talent and ability and time, it would have been better served in a number of ways that would have been to the benefit of all. If people are downloading a Linux or OSX version of an "emulator", then why not invest the time to get the baseline compiling again in Linux, or adding OSX to the list of targets? That way, people could actually not only run the modules but the full system, which preserves it much better than an API rewrite. Again, this isn't WINE either.

But you didn't choose that direction. Instead you in private e-mails decided to try to denigrate me for trying to do the work the right way -- by actually acquiring the rights to work with the platform, rather than just stealing it or working around it like most others including NetVillage have chosen to do. Then you tried to lowball offer for the rights, despite collecting money for work duplicating something that already exists (with the sole exception of a Linux or Mac OS build).

Stop the pretense and admit -- either to us, or yourself -- that you aren't contributing at all. This is about you and your own ego, whether you choose to accept and admit that or not. You could have been a contributor to the community, but you chose to go another route.
Founder, The Major BBS Restoration Project
Owner, Elwynor Technologies ISV
Former Owner, Galacticomm IP (2005-2020)
Contributor, Galacticomm IP baseline

User avatar
enusbaum
Posts: 17
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2020 4:47 pm
Location: Charlotte, NC
Contact:

Re: The Gamemaster BBS

Post by enusbaum »

Questman wrote:
> Way to choose one item from a list and argue it, classic red herring argument. I'm
> well aware of what DOSbox does.
>
> My point is this. Your work adds little to the community. If you have the talent
> and ability and time, it would have been better served in a number of ways that would
> have been to the benefit of all. If people are downloading a Linux or OSX version of
> an "emulator", then why not invest the time to get the baseline compiling
> again in Linux, or adding OSX to the list of targets? That way, people could
> actually not only run the modules but the full system, which preserves it much better
> than an API rewrite. Again, this isn't WINE either.
>
> But you didn't choose that direction. Instead you in private e-mails decided to try
> to denigrate me for trying to do the work the right way -- by actually acquiring the
> rights to work with the platform, rather than just stealing it or working around it
> like most others including NetVillage have chosen to do. Then you tried to lowball
> offer for the rights, despite collecting money for work duplicating something that
> already exists (with the sole exception of a Linux or Mac OS build).
>
> Stop the pretense and admit -- either to us, or yourself -- that you aren't
> contributing at all. This is about you and your own ego, whether you choose to
> accept and admit that or not. You could have been a contributor to the community,
> but you chose to go another route.

Hey Rick --

We have a fundamental difference in opinion on how best to approach sustaining accessibility to MBBS/WG modules for the foreseeable future. I wager there's a larger audience of people who'd love to play games like Tele-Arena, MajorMUD, Swords of Chaos, etc. who don't want to have to host a full WG3NT/WG2 (with a pirated TCP library) who are already running modern BBS systems such as Mystic or Synchronet.

You're making the case that the base platform should be the only way people should be able to do this. I disagree.

Disagreement on approach aside, I fundamentally believe that giving the community a choice in how they are provided access to/play modules for themselves is a good thing. Whether you feel that's a valid contribution or not is irrelevant. The community ultimately makes that call.
Developer, Reverse Engineer, MBBS/WG Enthusiast
Maintainer of The MajorBBS Emulation Project (MBBSEmu)

daniel_spain
Posts: 268
Joined: Sun Aug 09, 2020 2:39 am

Re: The Gamemaster BBS

Post by daniel_spain »

enusbaum wrote:
> daniel_spain wrote:
> > ok so that answers my main question. Sweet you need a valid reg, but who decides
> it
> > validity?
>
> The registration routine the Module has in place is run as is. The x86 assembly is
> executed on an emulated x86 i286 CPU core. BTURNO is treated just as a string that
> can be set in appsettings.json. No different than the value saved to GALGSBL.DLL
> (just in a more accessible form)
>
> > your intentions are good but there is someone else always willing to use it for
> evil.
> > I mean believe it or not galacticomm used to have a guy that single handedly
> verified
> > systems online for a valid reg# even Lance himself put a backdoor in majormud so
> you
> > could see
> > the bbs's reg# so it used to be a highly policed system.
> > There are still people out there that think anything bbs related should be free,
> open
> > sourced,
> > and available to all. Some forget the blood sweat and tears people put into this
> > stuff to make
> > it work.
>
> At the end of the day, I can't control how people use the platform. MBBSEmu does not
> encourage piracy any more/less so than DOSBox, VirtualBox, VMWare, etc. I disagree
> with the statement of anyone being able to "use MBBSEmu for evil". People
> running cracked/keygen software can do so on WG3NT/WG2/MBBS just as easily as
> MBBSEmu.
>
> From my discussions with ISV's, it's their "blood, sweat, and tears" that
> made then want to support our project in the first place. It's the best opportunity
> they've had in the past decade to reach a new audience.
>
> > I see you're a reverse engineer...... i took the tele-arena source code that is
> > floating around
> > the internet with that LIB file and recreated that LIB file (5 C files) through
> just
> > hard work,
> > failure, and determination until i replicated the original game api 100% (took 5
> > years)
> > and i did it because i enjoy it but the heat i take when i wont give people
> "the
> > source"
> > it amazes me.... noone is interested unless the "source is included"
> so yes
> > there are
> > people who will use your project for evil. But again im not against it, hey do
> you.
> > if its what you enjoy have at it
>
> I'm a little taken aback by the reaction by some in the community towards the
> project. Most have been very supportive (vocally and financially) -- but there are
> always detractors. I first came to these forums after the announcement to
> congratulate the new maintainer and lend my hand to support it any way I can. We're
> all fighting for the same side on different fronts.
>
> Why we can't coalesce as a group of enthusiasts vs. arguing over ownership or
> slinging around passive legal threats is sincerely disheartening if that is truly the
> state of things.

before this changes direction im just debating with ya, im not for/against im just pushing points.
you push back i pick a new "element" its not personal or an "attack" in any way i do not have a
dog in this fight, but as someone who is a member of 2 different emulation projects i can
honestly say i see arguments from both sides in the EA/Ultima Online emulation and the
Blizzard/World of Warcraft emulation. So dont be taken by anything i say im just clean
debating with ya, no negativity intended.

Now wanna get my ears perked up? Sure emulation is great but give me a way to script addons!
then you'll be my hero.

Questman
Posts: 136
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2020 2:12 pm
Location: Raleigh, NC
Contact:

Re: The Gamemaster BBS

Post by Questman »

enusbaum wrote:
>
> We have a fundamental difference in opinion on how best to approach sustaining
> accessibility to MBBS/WG modules for the foreseeable future. I wager there's a larger
> audience of people who'd love to play games like Tele-Arena, MajorMUD, Swords of
> Chaos, etc. who don't want to have to host a full WG3NT/WG2 (with a pirated TCP
> library) who are already running modern BBS systems such as Mystic or Synchronet.
>
> You're making the case that the base platform should be the only way people should be
> able to do this. I disagree.
>
> Disagreement on approach aside, I fundamentally believe that giving the community a
> choice in how they are provided access to/play modules for themselves is a good
> thing. Whether you feel that's a valid contribution or not is irrelevant. The
> community ultimately makes that call.

I think people could play the games on the system, and it's trivial as hell to install Major BBS. No different than the emulator. And they work as intended.

And the WG2 does not have to be a pirated TCP library - Major TCP/IP was not the only product. Galacticomm's ICO is not a charge and Major TCP/IP is unnecessary... so that argument's out the window. Also just because someone "wants" something doesn't mean it's appropriate. These products are not abandoned and they work just fine on all modern Windows systems.

And of course you disagree, because you chose the path of division in the first place!

And it may not even be legal what you're doing.
Founder, The Major BBS Restoration Project
Owner, Elwynor Technologies ISV
Former Owner, Galacticomm IP (2005-2020)
Contributor, Galacticomm IP baseline

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