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Re: Berkeley DB 6.0 license change to AGPLv3

On Wed, Jul 3, 2013 at 5:34 PM, Bradley M. Kuhn <bkuhn@ebb.org> wrote:
> On (b), I think the discussion about apt needing to be (effectively)
> AGPLv3-or-later to continue using BDB is salient.  I, for one, would
> like to see such a thing, but I'm a biased party who co-authored AGPLv3
> and believe in its policy goals; I'd like to see more software under
> AGPLv3!  But, I also see it from the point of view of Debian developers
> who might feel this sort of policy change is too drastic a move to the
> strongest copyleft available.

So, as I see wrong bits a few times in this thread now:
a) APT is GPL2+ licensed and will stay that way out of no other choice as
I bet its more likely that hell freezes over than that we track down every
contributor since 1997 to ask for an agreement for a license change …
(yes, we could switch to GPL3+ "for free", but it's not like we would gain
 anything from it – beside generating problems for GPL2-only dependees on
 libapt of course)
b) src:apt depends on libdb-dev for apt-ftparchive which is shipped in
apt-utils. I doubt it is insanely hard to switch to another database if
we would need to – the database is used as a cache, so not even strictly
needed – but GPL2+ is compatible with AGPL so I don't see why.
(Also, you can't interact with apt-ftparchive over the network,
 so no practical difference)
Other parts of APT have no relation to libdb whatsoever.

Sidenote: Debian infrastructure (aka dak) isn't depending on apt-ftparchive
anymore ["just" "some" derivatives use it nowadays], so the binary is even
less important than you might think/remember.

Disclaimer: This is not a remark regarding AGPL.
I am just trying to correct misunderstandings in regards to APT.

Best regards

David Kalnischkies

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