[Top][All Lists]

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

Re: gnulib's licensing

From: Bruno Haible
Subject: Re: gnulib's licensing
Date: Wed, 4 May 2011 02:55:46 +0200
User-agent: KMail/1.9.9

Hi Reuben,

> licensing, dependency on autotools, source library
> ...
> Of those three defects, the third is now being addressed (at least,
> for POSIX APIs, by libposix), and the second is not particularly
> urgent (autotools has a much bigger reach than it had 6 years ago, and
> has less competition; moreover, by using libposix one doesn't need to
> use autotools in a dependent package, at least for POSIX APIs,
> ignoring the rest of gnulib's goodness).
> However, licensing is a problem.

gnulib basically consists of four parts:
  - gnulib-tool as a build tool (GPL),
  - modules that make up libposix (mostly LGPL),
  - additional, convenience modules (mostly GPL),
  - support for maintaining and releasing projects (GPL).

Tools and Makefile snippets can be GPL without problem.

libposix is intended to be under LGPL, but we have some way to go
(agreements to get from the authors) for some modules:

When libposix will be distributed as a configurable tarball, it can be
installed as a shared library. Any program, even proprietary ones, can
link against such a library.

> In particular, I'd love to use gnulib 
> in other projects on which I work, such as file (Christos Zoulas's
> version, used widely in BSD and GNU), but it seems I can't, because
> it's BSD-licensed.

Technically there's no problem linking a BSD program against an LGPLed
library, or even a GPLed library. But some people in the BSD camp have
a problem with it. It's their problem, not ours.

I see no reason to relax the license of the additional, convenience modules
(such as 'copy-file' or 'list') to something weaker than GPL. These modules
are meant as a boost for free software, not as a boost for proprietary

In memoriam Zbigniew Iwański <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henryk_Iwański>

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]