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Re: GPL linking question

On Sat, Jul 28, 2001 at 12:53:00PM +1000, Hamish Moffatt wrote:
> > > Sounds like this would be in breech of the GPL?
> > 
> > If the application requires GPLed code, then yes.
> Requires in any sense? The app could use other SQL databases,
> but would be bundled with MySQL and that would be the default
> (and what most end users would use).

There was an argument before about GPL'd clients with fairly closed
protocols (ICQ, Napster, AIM, etc) depending on their non-free servers.
Consensus was that they didn't belong in contrib because they don't
actually depend on non-free software, although purists would suggest you
use something with a more open architecture if possible to help send the
best message to the developers of the proprietary server/protocol.

I'm not sure mysql's definition of linking matters.  What matters
according to the GPL is whether there is a legal derived work.  Now it's
quite possible to directly link a library such as GNU readline and still
not have a derived work under Copyright law.  Normal linking falls into
that definition pretty easily, other things clearly don't such as two apps
speaking together over a pipe or a documented network protocol, or even
some types of plugin systems.

You can expect that the next version of the GPL will try to close up these
potential holes as well as the FSF guys can, naturally.

Joseph Carter <knghtbrd@d2dc.net>                   Free software developer

Gates' Law: Every 18 months, the speed of software halves.

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