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Re: cdrtools - GPL code with CDDL build system

On Sat, 18 Mar 2006, Eduard Bloch wrote:
> Summary: a while ago, Joerg Schilling (upstream) replaced the
> copyright headers in the files of his build system inside of the
> cdrtools package with references to a CDDL license context.

Can we just fork from a version of the build system which did not
contain the CDDL and make whatever changes to it are necessary for it
to build?
> In #350739, the reporter claims that we and JS are violating the GPL
> because not all files required to create the executable work are
> available under the GPL license.

It's not that they have to be available, it's just that they have to
be compatible. [Moreover, JS violation of the GPL isn't interesting
because he's presumably the copyright holder, and can therefore do
whatever he wants with his work.]
> CDDL is considered GPL-incompatible for linking with GPLed code.

Not just linking; it's the creation of a derivative work of a GPLed
work. Frankly, I don't see how you can argue that cdrecord is not a
derivative work of the GPLed part of cdrecord and the build system.

> Discussion with upstream in hope to make it double-licensed was not
> very fruitfull. He defines his tarball as "medium" (in terms of our
> DFSG!) where the two parts of the software (code and build system)
> are allowed to coexist, and if we would not allow that, then we had
> prooved that GPL violates the DFSG (because it infects other
> software on the same "medium", hahaha).

It would then activate the GPL's mere aggregation clause, but that's
clearly not the case here.

> Now the question: how GPL-compatible should we consider this
> CDDL-like license? See http://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-list.html
> for details.

The FSF's summary on this issue is fairly authoritative. Indeed, the
patent reciprocity clause may also render software under this license

> We have the option of splitting the source package into code (GPLed)
> and meta-code (CDDL). Would that be suitable for main?

I don't see how this would get around the GPL incompatibility issues,
as the build system is only useful for cdrecord.

Don Armstrong

When I was a kid I used to pray every night for a new bicycle. Then I 
realised that the Lord doesn't work that way so I stole one and asked
Him to forgive me.
 -- Emo Philips.

http://www.donarmstrong.com              http://rzlab.ucr.edu

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