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Re: gimp1.2: gimp package suggest non-free software

On Nov 12, 2003, at 1:27 AM, Mathieu Roy wrote:

So you confirm what I thought (yes, I checked this page before):

   - the support for GIF creation inside the main gimp package, in
     main, has been removed in favor of a package in non-free, that
     provide the same functionality (plus patented compression).


This is not the case.

The GIF plugin from the main gimp source has been left completely untouched. Nothing has been removed "in favor" of anything.

Because the gif plug-in contained code using the patented LZW algorithm, I simply split it out -- without changing it -- into a gimp1.2-nonfree package, to allow people who did not wish to deal with the patent issues to still install GIMP.

The plug-in was not changed in any way. There is no plug-in for GIMP that allows gif creation without LZW compression as far as I know, and certainly not one available in the main source code. (If the gif plug-in linked with libgif, I could simply link it with libungif, but it does its own compression and would need to be re-written to use these libraries).

If you still think this is an issue, please take it up with the upstream GIMP maintainers. Debian has not changed anything about the GIMP source code, only packaged its binaries in a way friendly to people who do not wish to install non-free software.

As I mentioned in a response to the bug report, this is mostly a nonissue, since the LZW patent has expired in the US and I've merged the -nonfree package back into the main package in the unstable Debian distribution.



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