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From Ralph Goers <ralph.go...@dslextreme.com>
Subject Re: LGPL software behind an isolation layer
Date Thu, 27 Aug 2009 15:18:18 GMT

On Aug 27, 2009, at 7:34 AM, Ceki Gulcu wrote:
>> If you want to change the question and ask whether Ubuntu or RedHat  
>> is
>> allowed to distribute both on the same CD, and to configure it so
>> these projects make use of one another, the answer to that question  
>> is
>> an unqualified yes.
> No, that is not the question I would like to ask. The question I would
> like to ask is given an isolation later whether is (L)GPL's
> restrictions still apply.  FSF's view on the matter is of interest.

The FSF has answered this question. With the GPL the concept of an  
isolation layer is meaningless. If you bundle GPL'd software as part  
of your distribution then the whole thing must comply with the GPL.  
The same is true with the LGPL with an exception, you can license your  
code under whatever license you want. However the terms of the LGPL  
still apply to the works under that license and the terms must be  
complied with. So you are NOT free to have a license that says "No  
decompiling is allowed" where the LGPL clearly allows it.  As I've  
pointed out numerous times, if I write a Logback Appender under the  
LGPL then that Appender must be comply with the LGPL (and, is probably  
required to be licensed under the LGPL). Any classes that that  
Appender uses must then be available for debugging purposes.

> If I understand correctly, your position is that you don't care about
> this question because you don't wish to take chances. While that
> is reasonable and convenient, it goes beyond the declared intent,
> which is to avoid imposing restrictions on downstream users.

It is not a matter of not taking chances. We know what the  
consequences are. It is a matter of putting undesired restrictions on  
user's of Apache software. For some reason, you seem to think we  
should ignore those consequences.  If all Apache software was licensed  
under the GPL or LGPL obviously we would.


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