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Re: Bacula and OpenSSL

On Tuesday 25 September 2007 17:43, Shane Martin Coughlan wrote:
> Hi Kern
> Kern Sibbald wrote:
> > =====
> > Exception to the GPL:
> > Linking:
> > Bacula may be linked and distributed with any libraries permitted
> > under the GPL, or with any non-GPLed libraries, including OpenSSL, that
> > are required for its proper functioning, providing the license and hence
> > source code of those non-GPLed libraries comply with the Open Source
> > Definition as defined by the Open Source Initiative (www.opensource.org).
> > =======
> The list of licences accepted by OSI as Open Source is more or less
> the same as the list of licences accepted by the FSF as Free Software.
> Both include quite a few licences that are not compatible with each
> other (in much the same way as OpenSSL was not compatible with the GNU
> GPL).  By allowing people to link to all of them, potential problems
> could arise.
> I'd suggest a slightly more conservative approach of explicitly granting
> an OpenSSL exception and - if necessary in the future - to grant other
> exceptions explicitly too.  That way unforeseen problems can be avoided
> (like someone linking OpenSSL to GPLv2 to Apache to CDDL via Bacula, and
> third party copyright holders getting annoyed).
> There is a precedent for this in the language used in GNU WGET, which
> does have a special exception for linking to OpenSSL.  I made a version
> of it below that refers to Bacula.
> =====
> In addition, as a special exception, the Bacula Project gives
> permission to link the code of its release of Bacula with the OpenSSL
> project's "OpenSSL" library (or with modified versions of it that use
> the same license as the "OpenSSL" library), and distribute the linked
> executables. You must obey the GNU General Public License in all
> respects for all of the code used other than "OpenSSL". If you modify
> this file, you may extend this exception to your version of the file,
> but you are not obligated to do so. If you do not wish to do so, delete
> this exception statement from your version.
> =====
> Note that the final two lines are intended to allow the code to be
> recombined with vanilla (no exception) GPL code later.  This would apply
> if someone made a derived work without needing OpenSSL but needing to
> include someone else's GNU GPL code.
> I hope this is useful.

Yes, very much so.  Thanks particularly for the explanation of the final two 
lines which were not really clear to me.

After having thought about it, I will go with the above, since it accomplishes 
what I want in the most conservative way -- though I will have to modify it, 
because unlike most Open Source projects, Bacula uses a single LICENSE file 
for describing the license details rather than adding them to each file.

Before making the final changes, I want to read the Software Freedom Law 
Center's guidelines on this subject one or two more times, then I will modify 
the file headers and the LICENSE file and send them to you for final review.

By the way, so that there is no confusion, I am planning to number the first 
release with this licensing change as version 3.0.0.  The GPL license 
exception will be in the trunk long before 3.0.0 is released, but there will 
probably be at least one or more release of version 2.2.x under the pure 
GPLv2 OpenSSL incompatible license before 3.0.0 is ready.

Best regards,


PS: thanks to the others who made comments. Though I may share the same views, 
those comments helped me see the situation clearer and reach a decision.

> Regards
> Shane

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