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Re: LGPL-library (tntdb) linked with GPL-library (mysql)

On Sat, 26 Aug 2006, Tommi Mäkitalo wrote:
> > If you are saying that LGPL:ed tntdb would be distributable as
> > long as nobody uses it under the LGPL license, but only under the
> > GPL license, then I think I do understand.

This would only be the case if it was forming a derivative work of a
GPLed work, in which case making tntdb LGPLed instead of GPLed would
be a null op.

> As far as I understand it should be ok to relicense tntdb under the
> LGPL, which allowes users to distribute closed source applications
> linked with tntdb. It is not allowed to link with the mysql-driver,
> but because this never happens directly - only by dlopening
> tntdb-mysql, it does not affect the LGPL-license. Right?

Pretty much. Commercial users may not be able to use or distribute
tntdb-mysql if they form a derivative work of a GPLed work, but they
should be able to use the other parts of tntdb in their program so
long as they comply with the LGPL.

[You'll notice that I'm not telling you whether or not dlopen()ing
actually forms a derivative work. That's because it's not clear
whether it does or does not. There's no case law in this area at
all,[1] so the conservative method is to assume that it does if you
want to avoid liability, although the actual legal reality is likely

Don Armstrong
1: Or at least that I'm aware of.
I'd sign up in a hot second for any cellular company whose motto was:
"We're less horrible than a root canal with a cold chisel."
 -- Cory Doctorow

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

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