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From "William A. Rowe, Jr." <>
Subject Re: httpd modules and the GPL
Date Sat, 15 Aug 2009 14:57:11 GMT
Graham Leggett wrote:
> To clarify how something might be licensed, if an httpd module was
> written that was designed to expose a library that was GPL, would that
> httpd module need to also be GPL'ed? (I assume yes). Would the writing
> of such a module violate any terms of the ASL? (I assume no). Would the
> writing of such a module violate the terms of the GPL? (no idea).

It should not, no.  Would the module have to be GPL'ed?  No, if it has
been compatibly licensed, and is not a derivative work, then removing
the GPL dependency would ensure the AL terms were sufficient.

But would the module be subject to the restrictions of the GPL?  Just
as soon as it was linked to the library, yes.  Just remember that FSF
folks believed GPL v2 to be incompatible with any AL, while most everyone
agrees that GPL v3 is compatible to AL 2.0.

Your AL perspective probably assumed you were thinking in terms of source
code licenses, and sure the AL also applies to the binary after it has
been compiled.  GPL authors often think in terms of binary licenses, which
ensure that the source code license is guaranteed.

Be aware of other boundries such as "system library" vs a user distributed
library, other GPL license exceptions by the library author, etc.

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