[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Please pass judgement on X-Oz licence: free or nay?

On Tue, Aug 03, 2004 at 02:01:03AM +1000, Daniel Stone wrote:
> Hi guys,
> We're trying to release X11R6.7.1 over at X.Org these days, but we've
> hit a little roadbump.
> As I'm sure you all know, XFree86 post-4.4RC2 bears a non-DFSG-free
> licence, which makes it impossible for Debian to include. X.Org forked
> from XFree86 immediately before the licence change, and continued
> developing a monolithic X distribution, which led to X11R6.7, which was
> released relatively recently.
> Now, with a release only 23 days away (isn't this better already?),
> we've hit a speedbump. It's been alleged in Debian circles that the
> XFree86 autoconfig code is non-free[0], and I've filed a release-blocker
> bug on X.Org[1] accordingly.
> However, on the release call today, it was alleged that the code was
> actually DFSG-free, and that the so-called 'X-Oz licence' bore no legal
> problems whatsoever, and would be fine to go into main, or whatever[2].
> [...]

On #freedesktop a few minutes ago [the times are in +1000, despite the
fact I'm in -0400, so interpret the timestamps accordingly]:
05:48 < Overfiend> anyone here who was on the release call this morning?
05:50 < daniels> Overfiend: yes
05:51 < daniels> Overfiend: if you're asking about the licence issue, it
has been concluded that we have no licence issues with the autoconfig 
code currently in our tree
05:51 < Overfiend> so you don't actually need an answer to the question
you raised, even though posted the wrong license?
05:51 < Overfiend> s/posted/& you/
05:52 < Overfiend> er, other way around.  You get the idea.
05:52 < daniels> Overfiend: the licence I posted was verbatim from
05:52 < Overfiend> that's not very precise.
05:52 < Overfiend> Which repo as of which date?
05:52 < daniels> and aside from the different comment syntax in C vs
shell/Perl, the licence on 
programs/Xserver/hw/xfree86/getconfig/getconfig.{pl,sh} is the same
05:52 < Overfiend> I may not have time to reply before I go to
LinuxWorld, but your message was so vague as to be almost useless.
05:53 < daniels> Overfiend: freedesktop.org:/cvs/xorg/xc,
05:53 < daniels> Overfiend: despite the 1.1 licence being on
autoconfig-1.0.diff.gz et al from x-oz.com, it seems David committed the
autoconfig code to the tree with the 1.0 licence initially
05:54 < Overfiend> what appears to have happened was that the X-Oz
autoconfig code was checked in under the MIT/X11 license, which I didn't 
know, and that it was later relicensed by David in September 2003 very
quietly, and the X-Oz weirdass license is what was on it by the time
David relicensed the whole tree in February -- which I guess X.Org
didn't know.
05:54 < Overfiend> any branch as of "right before" the bug relicensing
would still have the bad license on the autoconfig stuff.
05:54 < Overfiend> unless someone came along and dialed those files back
by hand.
05:54 < Overfiend> sorry, s/bug/big/
05:55 < daniels> Overfiend: egbert didn't just use -D; he elaborated on
the call he was quite careful to check that all the files had the right 
05:55 < Overfiend> ignore x-oz.com.  They are a useless data point as
I've never looked at that site to figure out what's going on with
XFree86 CVS.
05:55 < Overfiend> I didn't even know you could get any code from
05:55 < daniels> Overfiend: so (and you can check the repository if you
think I'm likely to be wrong), what sits in the x.org monolithic x 
distribution's cvs repository as of this day is the x-oz autoconfig
code with a mit/x11 [ed: three-clause bsd] licence
05:56 < daniels> Overfiend: the diffs were available from x-oz.com
before they were committed, and that's the first place I ever saw the 
autoconfig stuff
05:56 < Overfiend> well, that's good to hear -- it's be nice if people
who went to the trouble of careful checking would go to the trouble of 
carefully documenting.
05:56 < daniels> which means I've been tainted wrt cleanrooming it
since, oh, august last year
05:56 < Overfiend> oh -- I didn't even know x-oz ever hosted it.
05:56 < daniels> Overfiend: feel free to quote any parts of this
05:56 < Overfiend> likewise
05:56 < Overfiend> well, this is very good news.  This means I can put
more stuff in my untained tree
05:56 < daniels> Overfiend: x-oz wrote and hosted it. they also have
other modules available for download on their site, such as the
so-called 'loader++'.
05:56 < daniels> yes.
05:56 < daniels> is there anything else i can help you with?
05:56 < davidz> dcbw: aha, so like a change in libhal is cause this?
05:57 < Overfiend> and it gives me more confidence in the cleanliness
of X.Org's licensing

So, what happened is that we have autoconfig code available to us under
the XFree86 1.0 (3-clause BSD) licence, which is DFSG-free; this is the
same code that's currently in the X.Org tree, which appeared to form the
core of Nathaniel's concerns.

So, what I identified as 'the X-Oz licence' is just XFree86 1.0, and
there's nothing to worry about. Except the real X-Oz licence, which is
non-DFSG-free. :)


Daniel Stone                                                <daniels@debian.org>
Debian: the universal operating system                     http://www.debian.org

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: Digital signature

Reply to: