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Re: cygwin.dll license (was Re: FreeQt ?)

On 2 Jun 1997, Mark Eichin wrote:

> For some more perspective on the "interface" argument, go back and see
> some of the flaming a year or two ago about the GNU "libmp" (multiple
> precision integer math library.) See also the discussion of just a
> week or three ago about a company shipping a commercial package that
> uses GNU RCS underneath -- but since GNU RCS is built as a DLL (and
> they ship sources for those changes, and gnu rcs itself) they don't
> have to ship the program sources (and have allegedly run this past
> the FSF for confirmation that it was OK....) Recall that RCS is
> GPLed, not LGPLed.

Hm, that's very interesting. Someone I was talking with a time back used
the example 'Putting GZIP in a dll and then linking to it still makes your
code GPL'. But if the FSF says that it is okay to do that then it is okay
to do that ;>

The other neat GPL issue comes in with C++, you actually DO include
instances of code in your program with inlines, templates, vtables and
other things. Fortunately G++ is completely free if compiled and used with
GNU's compiler, LGPL otherwise.

I really must admit I find the GPL very cryptic, it's hard to say exactly
what it means if you look at very small detail. I do think that it makes
sense however that you should be able to put RCS in a dll and link to the
dll. The debate around that is all based on the question of what is a
derived work. One could even argue executing gzip in a pipeline makes
other elements in the pipeline 'derived' somehow from gzip. The GPL just
doesn't make that perfectly clear!


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