Re: GPLed firmware flasher ...
On Fri, Mar 11, 2005 at 09:24:29AM -0300, Humberto Massa wrote:
> Despite the letter of the GPL and its post-amble, "linking", generally
> construed as "stitching together (normally executable) object (as
> opposed to source) files and resolving fixups so the result is an
> executable file" does NOT make a derivative work. Derivative works are
> made when you have intelligent *transformation* of the original work.
> Linking is not intelligent -- much au contraire, it's fully automatic.
> So, no, if it doesn't fit, you must acquit -- IOW: the fact of embedding
> the flasher and the flash in the same ELF file does not make the
> combined work a derivative work on any of them; only a "collective" work
> on both.
> Collective works are treated separately by copyright law. To distribute
> a collective work, the distributor must comply with both licenses
> individually (flasher=GPL, flash=proprietary). If the flash albeit
> proprietary is redistributable, the combined ELF is Ok.
Is this collective work the same thing as the 'mere aggregation' that the GPL
and/or GPL FAQ mentions ?
> With the obvious caveat that it couldn't be distributed _by_ _Debian_.
Well, no, but the flasher code with a script or makefile to link any random
firmware in and produce a flasher would be.
The combined work is also distributable in the non-free section of our