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From Neil C Smith <>
Subject Re: Optional modules with GPL dependencies (was: What to include/exclude in code donation to Apache)
Date Sun, 06 Nov 2016 15:49:10 GMT
On 6 November 2016 at 14:32, Wade Chandler <> wrote:
> I totally see your point here, but yes, separate from the license
> discussion. I still think NB has this problem now, so nothing changes
> there, so what would you do different, right now, even if NB were not going
> to Apache? This is why I say we have to iterate. It can't all be done at
> once.

Agreed, this would still be an issue, although less of one while both
projects have connections within the same company.  And I'm really not
suggesting that this all be done at once.

But, I really think this relates to the question of licensing, or how
to handle something that can't be donated to Apache because of code
licensing.  In particular, Niclas' comments that "This
is Open SOURCE, not OLB (openly licensed binaries) software.", and
that ASF would like to see dependency on a regular OpenJDK system.
nb-javac has similarities to a binary blob, in that its functionality
can never be entirely maintained on the NetBeans community side -
there is a similar lack of control.

So, what I would want to see if I was on the Apache side, and I think
would be good for the NetBeans community, is some commitments from
Oracle, OpenJDK and ASF / NB on a direction of travel to remove this
dependency as part of the code donation.  That would include a
commitment from Oracle / OpenJDK to not break any required internal
interfaces, provide fixes / updates, even maintain it, as and until
it's possible to remove nb-javac.  I presume removing it is going to
require the OpenJDK and NetBeans projects to agree what can be added
to core javac and what has to be reworked on the NetBeans side.

That all of course relies on the initial dependency / licensing being
accepted for a least an interim period!

That's pretty much the sum of what's in my head - IMO solving the
licensing question and the clarification of how to handle the
resulting technical / development needs cannot be handled usefully in
isolation - particularly with regards to the realities of this
particular code.  The agreed solution has to suit both.  I'll shut up
on that now! :-)

Best wishes,


Neil C Smith
Artist & Technologist

Praxis LIVE - hybrid visual IDE for creative coding -

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