Speakup Install on Redhat Enterprise Linux

Beth Hatch bhatch200 at comcast.net
Tue Feb 8 15:12:56 EST 2005

Hi Janina,

Thanks for your message.  First, let me say that I truly appreciate Bill's
contribution to us in the blind Linux community and to me personally.  He
spent a lot of time with me and one of my instructors attempting to get
Enterprise Linux up and running.  Actually, it is a long and convoluted
story as to why I am, or was, using Enterprise Linux.  At school, I am using
Fedora on an external hard drive for school use and this was agreed upon
with my instructors and the chair of the IT department.  I had an academic
license for Enterprise Linux long before I knew about the Speakup enabled
Fedora Core so because I paid for support, I wanted to see if I could make
it work.

	I did contact Red Hat support both by phone and email and expressed
to them my annoyance and dismay that Enterprise did not include Speakup in
its kernel.  The person on the phone was extremely helpful to me, but the
customer service person that responded to my email informed me that Red Hat
could not deal with Speakup because it was "a third party program."  She did
not respond to my later message where I pointed out that Brltty is on the
Enterprise 3 Release 4 distribution, which is also a community supported,
third party program.  I told them the only way I was able to come anywhere
near installing Enterprise was through Brltty, but that I really wanted to
use Speakup.

	So now I am going back to Fedora Core 3 and will wipe out my
Enterprise installation because compiling my kernel with Speakup found so
many dependencies and other steps that needed to be taken that I decided I
would go back to Fedora as I'm a new Linux user and my knowledge of how to
compile kernels just isn't there yet.

	I am willing to work with anyone on getting Enterprise work, I thin
it is incumbent upon Red Hat to live up to its accessibility support that it
displays all over its web site.  In my humble opinion, it's one thing to say
that you're section 508 compliant, but then quite another to actually make
things happen so that blind people can install, configure, and use software.
Just putting some accessibility links on their web site and referring to
Speakup in a readme file is, in my opinion, following the letter of the law
but definitely not the spirit of the law.

Sorry, soap box off now.  It's just that my experience with all of this has
been somewhat difficult concerning Enterprise Linux.  What has made me want
to keep on trying has been the support I've been getting from the wonderful
Linux community.  Thanks to everyone for your assistance and support!!


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