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GPL with linking exception?
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Date: 2010-01-17 (16:02)
From: Guillaume Yziquel <guillaume.yziquel@c...>
Subject: Re: [Caml-list] GPL with linking exception?
Dario Teixeira a écrit :
> Hi,
>> I've been looking around on the net to see if I could find
>> a GPL3 + linking exception copyright notice lying around. I
>> only found LGPL + linking exception.
>> Does anyone know what to write for GPL3 + linking
>> exception? Is it even possible, or is only LGPL + linking
>> exception possible?
> IANALNDIPOOTV (I am neither a lawyer nor do I play one on TV), but I'm
> under the impression that the  linking exception only makes sense to
> appease the requirements of LGPL.  The LGPL requires that the main binary
> may be used with an updated version of the LGPL library, which in most
> cases implies some form of dynamic linking.  However, this conflicts
> with the most common way of building Ocaml programs, where all Ocaml
> libraries are statically linked into the main executable.  Hence the
> need for a linking exception, which relaxes the LGPL requirement.  If,
> on the other hand, the library is GPL, then all source code is available
> (library + main), which renders this point moot.
> Best regards,
> Dario Teixeira

I acknowledge that you are not a lawyer, nor that you play one on TV.

To my understanding the LGPL requires that you be able to replace the 
LGPL'd library by another library (including an updated version of the 
library). To this extent, it (very roughly and very quickly) imposes 
conditions on the stub code interfacing the two libraries, and you need 
to be able to reproduce the compilation steps. Very roughly... I'm not a 
lawyer either. Nor do I play one on TV.

I do not believe (but I may be mistaken) that this conflicts with the 
static linkage of the main executable. But if you have the ocaml runtime 
getting linked in some way or the other, then the LGPL becomes somehow 
not very handy. Is this the main reason?

My question about GPL is mostly the following: Can you distribute GPL 
bytecode files? Do you have any issues when 'linking' the runtime with 
the GPL bytecode?

Or are there other issues preventing from releasing GPL OCaml code?

All the best,

      Guillaume Yziquel