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Re: Bacula and OpenSSL

"Kern Sibbald" <kern@sibbald.com> wrote in message 200707121641.53917.kern@sibbald.com">news:200707121641.53917.kern@sibbald.com...
Hello Shane,

Bacula is nearing the end of a development cycle and the next version will be
released in a matter of weeks, so I would like to revisit the problem that
recently came up with the Bacula license.  My purpose is not to debate the
issues but rather come up with a plan forward for Bacula so that all
distributions can use it with OpenSSL or any other Open Source code without problems. Please excuse me if I provide you with a bit of my reasoning and thoughts -- the idea is to help you target responses so I can end up with an
accpetable solution.

Bacula originally used the GPL v2 license, but I added some modifications to it -- most if not all are (IMO) now contained in the GPL v3. However, some
of my original modifications created objections with Debian, so I removed
them. In addition, Debian has an issue with distributing Bacula linked with
OpenSSL and as a consequence, I added a modification to the GPL permitting
Debian to link Bacula with OpenSSL.

In more recent discussions with you, it seems that some of my modifications to
the GPL (particularly the "Debian" clause) created a legal problem with
Fedora and hence Red Hat because the GPL v2 is incompatible with the OpenSSL license and because there are about 10-20 files in the Bacula source that are copyrighted by third-parties under the GPL, so by modifying my license, I was
or could have been technically violating their licenses.

Well it is not a violation to have a mechanism to allow third parties to link to openSSL. The third parties would be violating licences by linking the work (assuming the FSF's linking theories are in fact leagally sound), however that is not your concern. What would be your concern is that distributions are often not willing to
distribute the linked executables, for obvious reasons.

However, for you the ideal situation would be to get permission from the copyright holders of the gpl'ed code you did not write to add a clause allowing linking to openssl. If you could do that, then just add the clause and everything is fine.

One other possibility you did not list in your message would be to convince openSSL to change the licence to one that is GPL-compatible. This seems highly unlikely (nearly impossible), but would finally fix this problem once and for all. (The OpenSSL team feels the licence is GPL-compatible. It's unclear why, as it has a BSD like-advertising clause that is infamous for its GPL-incompatibility).

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