[Mono-list] So is GPL really viral after all?

Dominic Pease handor@peaseassociates.com
Fri, 13 Jul 2001 14:45:10 -0500

This seems reasonable. But it doens't seem to explain quite everything. I
mean, Stallman said that static and dynamic linking were pretty much
identical legally speaking, and so the intent of thing thing (whether or not
it's legally enforceable) seems to be that if you dynamically link against a
GPL library you're under GPL, too...

That would mean that it's different than an MS license. I can freely link
against, say, MSHTML, and pay nothing and incur no responsibilities about my
license. It would seem the same thing is impossible with respect to the GPL.


-----Original Message-----
From: mono-list-admin@ximian.com [mailto:mono-list-admin@ximian.com]On
Behalf Of Miguel de Icaza
Sent: Thursday, July 12, 2001 3:31 PM
To: Michael Poole
Cc: Bob_Salita@SoftworksLtd.com; mono-list@ximian.com
Subject: Re: [Mono-list] So is GPL really viral after all?

> Are we reaching a consensus that GPL and LGPL are as viral as
> whatstheirnames say it is? At least in a mono situation.

The GPL is viral if you take GPL code.

The same thing happens with Microsoft code.  If you take Microsoft
source code (say, Shared Source code), you can not just go away and
reuse it for your own project and sell copies.  You have to discuss
matters with Microsoft.

Same with the GPL: if you want to take someone else's code and run
away with it, you will have to negotiate.

Examples of negotiations in the past with GPL code:

	* Linux network drivers: originally written by Donald Becker.
          Some company decided `Lets get all the Linux drivers and put
          them into our proprietary kernel'.

	  They had to do a licensing agreement with Donald (he did
	  relicense his code to them) in exchange for a fee to use his
	  software in their operating system.

	* Cygnus Cygwin toolkit: GPL Unix emulation library.  If you
          want to write proprietary applications with it, you have to
          pay a feww to Cygnus to relicense the code to you under a
          proprietary license.

	* Qt: Same as Cygnus: free for free software, pay-a-fee for
          proprietary software.


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