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Re: [Help-gsl] GPL violation?

From: Brian Gough
Subject: Re: [Help-gsl] GPL violation?
Date: Thu, 10 Dec 2009 12:43:21 +0000
User-agent: Wanderlust/2.14.0 (Africa) Emacs/22.1 Mule/5.0 (SAKAKI)

At Wed, 9 Dec 2009 23:27:16 +1300,
Johannes Buchner wrote:
> I found a software package that uses the GSL, but is not licensed
> under a OSS license.  Please correct me if I'm wrong, but users of
> the GSL have to license any code that uses the GSL -- links against
> it -- as GPL, right?  It is also my understanding that the GSL does
> not necessarily have to be distributed itself.  Most of that
> packages code is Fortran, but one standalone C file/tool uses GSL
> functions. There is no license statement. It is distributed as
> source code, without containing a version of the GSL.

Is this the MET Fortran package?  It sounds like it.  If so, the
situation is that I agree with you entirely and I got the same answer
from them.

I do believe that if the program is distributed (even in purely source
form) it should be under the GPL, a compatible license, or public

> On a somewhat related note, can users of the GSL choose to make
> their code GPLv2 if it is still compatible with the 'old' GSL
> versions that didn't have GPLv3?

While that might be possible I don't think it would be desirable, if
someone wanted to use "GPLv2 only" for everything it would prevent
people from using their code with new versions of the GSL under GPLv3.
The GPLv3 is a state-of-the-art free software license and I would
encourage everyone to use it.

Brian Gough

GNU Scientific Library -

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