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Re: License issues with md5deep

Giovanni Mascellani wrote:
> Hi all!

> These days I am trying to package md5deep for Debian[1]. Although it is
> my first compiled package (the other was in Python), I'm not having any
> technical problem. I have just a bunch of question for you about the
> license. I don't know if you should write to debian-legal, or you can
> help me directly.
debian-legal is a better place.

> This file is surely GPL and not in the public domain. Isn't illegal to
> link GPL object code with other non-GPL object code and don't
> distribute it as GPL? In other words, because of only this GPL file,
> all the package should be GPL licensed, isn't it?
I think, it's a GPL violation. The problem is that you cannot relicense
the public domain parts under the GPL, because they can not be

> Last, but not least, whirpool.c and whirpool.h don't have any copyright
> notice at all.
> The README says:
> This program is a work of the US Government. In accordance with 17 USC
> 105, copyright protection is not available for any work of the US
> Government.  Lawyer to English translation: This program is PUBLIC
> Not only is this program not copyrighted, but IT CANNOT BE COPYRIGHTED
> BY
> In Debianizinig this program, I own a piece of copyright on the final
> work. Isn't this in contrast with the "Lawyer to English" clause?
You can make your debian packaging public domain.

> Sorry for writing this long and meticulous email, but this is my second
> package and I'm not expert yet. I wouldn't do anything illegal! Can you
> answer me, or should I write to debian-legal?
You should better write to debian-legal.

Julian Andres Klode

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