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Re: GPL version 3

From: Jerone Young
Subject: Re: GPL version 3
Date: Wed, 4 Jul 2007 16:53:36 -0500

I think we should leave Grub Legacy GPL v2 and move Grub 2 to GPL v3.
Given Grub Legacy really has had little work on it and most distros
are maintaining their own patches anyway. With little to no work on
Grub Legacy going on anyway, no reason to create work for it :-) . I
see Grub Legacy dieing off once Grub 2 is ready for prime time.

Best to move the new license to the new upcoming code base and leave
the old code base be.

On 7/4/07, Yoshinori K. Okuji <address@hidden> wrote:

I would like to discuss the possibility of migrating to GPL version 3. As you
know, GPLv3 has been published, and all GNU software is recommended to
migrate from GPLv2 to GPLv3.

When we look at only GRUB 2, there should be no problem. Nearly all code is
copyrighted by the Free Software Foundation, Inc., and the rest is licensed
under GPLv2 or later (such as LZO). The disadvantage I can think of is only
that we will not be able to reuse GPLv2-only code in the future (e.g. Linux),
but I don't think this is so important, because we have always been producing
code ourselves for technical reasons.

My question is about GRUB Legacy. As GRUB Legacy contains some GPLv2-only code
from Linux, it is not easy to migrate to GPLv3. If we want to migrate, we
must drop out such code, and rewrite that or port code from GRUB 2. Honestly,
I don't think this is worth doing.

So I bet that GRUB Legacy should remain under GPLv2. But this can cause some
problem potentially. Let's say, we find the same bug both in GRUB Legacy and
in GRUB 2. In the current trend, the bug would be fixed in GRUB 2 sooner. But
this fix may not be backported to GRUB Legacy as it is, once GRUB 2 migrates
to GPLv3, because of the license incompatibility. Thus this means that the
maintenance of GRUB Legacy would be harder.

Given the fact that nobody is really willing to maintain GRUB Legacy, we need
to consider which is more important, migrating to GPLv3, or keeping it easy
to backport fixes to GRUB Legacy from GRUB 2. I myself prefer to migrate to
GPLv3, and just forget about GRUB Legacy, of which I have been dreaming all
the time. But I think it would be fair to ask others' opinions before making
the decision.

So what do you think?


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