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Re: I've got a bad feeling about this...

Matthew Garrett wrote:
On Tue, Oct 15, 2002 at 03:47:01PM +1000, matthew green wrote:
as far as i'm aware, there are very conflicting views on mixing
GPL & 4-clause software.  to me, calling them "incompatible" such
that you refuse to link apps & libraries because of it is way over
stepping the mark, espcially if you are linking GPL apps against
a BSD system -- are you going to claim that all non-GPL systems
that include GPL programs should have all their libraries licensed
under the GPL?  is "sunfreeware.com" illegal?  SGI's "fw" ?

These fall under the following bit of the GPL:

"However, as a special exception, the source code distributed need not
include anything that is normally distributed (in either source or binary
form) with the major components (compiler, kernel, and so on) of the
operating system on which the executable runs, unless that component
itself accompanies the executable."

So we can't link any GPLed stuff /into/ libc, but distributing libc and
supplying GPLed stuff linked against it in separate packages shouldn't be
a problem.

From what I read on debian-legal about the OpenSSL problem, Debian seems to interpret "accompanies the executable" to mean in the same distribution or on the same cdrom.

I do think that this clause should be taken out and shot. It's excessively vague, and doesn't define it's terms. "normally distributed with the major components of the operating system," isn't defined, and neither is "accompanies the executable."

According to the GPL FAQ, it applies to proprietary operating systems, but nothing in the license itself says any such thing...

the only problem with the Big List file is that i'd expect a lot of it
not to apply to debian/netbsd.  only those parts in sys/, lib/libc/ and
sundry programs ... which is probably 90% of the list anyway.

A quick grep of libc reveals that it's mostly either The NetBSD foundation
or UCB, but there's random others in there. The more recent ones don't
have the advertising clause, but there's a few who still do.

Same situation with FreeBSD, although I haven't noticed it as much with libc in particular.


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