Re: xcdroast does no longer work with wodim: Who to blame?
On Tue, 3 Mar 2009, Matthew Johnson wrote:
On Mon Mar 02 22:36, Bill Unruh wrote:
Are you claiming that he does/did not have the right to release the major
portion of the code under CDDL? (ie those portions that he did release in that
way?) Ie, that he did not have the permission of those other copyright holders
to thus release the code?
Merely stating, I believe, that he would _need_ all of those other
copyright holders to relicesce their sections of the work in the same
manner each time he wants to change the licence and so saying that he is
the sole copyright holder is a slight simplification. Speaking as a dbus
I agree that it is a simplification, nor has he made the claim that he owns
all the copyrights. He has claimed the right to license under the CDDL and
I think it is best to assume that he has that permission, unless proven otherwise.
contributor, which recently tried to relicense, it's really quite hard
to get hold of everyone in order to do this (we failed). This is why the
FSF insist you grant them the copyright on any patches you submit.
The problem is fairly clear; the combination of GPLed and CDDLed code
is not distributable. Whether Joerg will agree with that statement of
the problem is unlikely, but that's not really our problem anymore.
This is again far too broad a statement. Debian does distribute a
combination of GPL and many other code licenses which are not GPL-- if
they apply to separate and different programs. I am trying to narrow
down the problem. So again, is the issue the linking of mkisofs with
The problem is with the linking. Debian is allowed to ship non-linked
CDDL (or other) software on the same media as GPL software (the 'mere
aggregation' clause) and link GPL fundamental system libraries such as
libc to non-GPL software (the 'system libraries' clause), but it is not
allowed to link anything against GPL software unless the resulting work
as a whole can be distributed under the terms of the GPL.
This means that works licensed under the BSD, MIT, expat etc licences
can be linked against GPL works because they can be distributed under
the terms of the GPL without violating their own terms of distribution.
You cannot distribute a CDDL work under the terms of the GPL without
violating its licence.
As you say, most of cdrecord is pure CDDL and there is no issue with
that at all (assuming the above agreement of all copyright holders. As
you say, we generally have to trust upstreams about this). The issue is
specifically with the combination of a GPL-only mkisofs with a CDDL-only
libscg. If Jorg were to dual-license either of them (again, see
relicensing) then we could distribute the result under the terms of
whichever licence they shared (and it doesn't really matter which).
OK, good. So if Jorg were to dual license libscg, this would be sufficient for
Debian to believe that they are able to distribute it? This is far weaker than
the demand that all of the software be dual licensed or GPLed. Whether or not
he would be willing to dual license libscg I have no idea. And the use mkisofs
makes of libscg seems to be pretty small. I understand that he feels that
there is no problem with distribution as it now stands, but perhaps he would
be willing to dual license that small part simply in order to make his progam more
available to users of Linux, who would really benefit.
However, I'll repeat the clause that this would merely make it possible
for us to distribute. It still requires a maintainer who will work with
Jorg, who has been hostile in the past about things like patching his
software and working with the Linux kernel rather than insisting
everything be done like solaris. Debian routinely patches software it
ships for many reasons and this is unlikely to change with cdrecord.
I understand this as well. That is a however a different issue than the legal
one. It at least opens the possibility, both for Debian and for the many other
Linux distributions. And relieving the Debian maintainers
from having to try to keep up to date with new and old hardware, which Schilling has
proven himself to be willing to do, is an attraction which may help make up for
other detractions. It has been said that Debian is used to working with ornery writers.