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Re: Request to relax the licenses of quotearg, quotearg-simple, xalloc,

From: Eric Blake
Subject: Re: Request to relax the licenses of quotearg, quotearg-simple, xalloc, xalloc-die, xalloc-oversized to LGPLv2+
Date: Wed, 17 Oct 2012 09:46:14 -0600
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:16.0) Gecko/20121009 Thunderbird/16.0

On 10/17/2012 09:35 AM, Richard W.M. Jones wrote:
> libguestfs (an LGPLv2+ library) would like to use the useful quotearg
> functions to ensure we can run system(3)-style external commands while
> safely quoting shell arguments.
> However this would require relaxation of the license to LGPLv2+ for
> at least the following modules [*]:
>   quotearg
>   quotearg-simple

I'm definitely okay with quotearg-simple being relaxed, but I worry that
relaxing quotearg may be counter-productive to protecting value-added of
gpl code.  On the other hand, it may be that the only reason quotearg is
gpl is because it uses xalloc, and fixing it to avoid xalloc would then
clear the way to make it usable from libraries.

>   xalloc
>   xalloc-die
>   xalloc-oversized

Maybe xalloc-oversized can be LGPLv2+, but xalloc and xalloc-die must
not be.  Library code must not call exit(), and xalloc-die exists solely
to call exit().  The xalloc module should remain GPL, and we should
instead figure out how to break the dependency of quotearg wanting to
use xalloc.

Eric Blake   address@hidden    +1-919-301-3266
Libvirt virtualization library http://libvirt.org

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