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[Caml-list] License Conditions for OCaml
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Date: -- (:)
From: Patrick M Doane <patrick@w...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] License Conditions for OCaml
On Fri, 9 Nov 2001, Vitaly Lugovsky wrote:

> On Thu, 8 Nov 2001, Patrick M Doane wrote:
> >   "The LGPL puts no restrictions at all on programs linked with LGPL-ed
> > libraries. Thus, users are free to distribute (or not) OCaml-generated
> > binaries under whatever conditions they like."
> >
> > >From my reading of the LGPL, which seems to correspond with the opinions
> > of others on the list, this just isn't true.
>  Please, read it again. Carefully.

I have read it again today, carefully, and still come to the same

  1. Users are allowed to reverse engineer the application

  2. Source (or possibly object files) for my application must be included
     in the distribution.

I could probably be convinced that object files are sufficient for
purposes of satisfying the license, but that just exposes the next major
problem (i.e. point #1).

> > If I develop an application
> > with OCaml, I must distribute that application with source code.
>  No. You must distribute a runtime source or just put a link how to get
> it. Nothing more. There are a lot of commercial, closed source
> applications linked with LGPL libraries - e.g. any Linux commercial
> apps linked with GNU Libc.

The runtime source for OCaml must be included or a "written letter" must
be provided. That's quite a bit different than a link.

You also need to include either source (or again maybe object files) of
the application that uses the library.

It's not sufficient to simply ship a static executable and include a
notice where one can get the OCaml source code.

> > This isn't acceptable for commercial development
>  It IS acceptable. But here, I think, it's offtopic. Read slashdot, and so
> on. Look at WineX, for example: open source, commercial binaries.

I agree that for open source commercial software, there are no problems.
This hardly represents the majority of commercial development though.

If this isn't an appropriate place to discuss issues with the Caml
license, where else is?

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