[sane-devel] Please give me some help to solve the license issues in using sane
olaf.meeuwissen at avasys.jp
Tue Jun 10 23:49:04 UTC 2008
Alessandro Zummo <azummo-lists at towertech.it> writes:
> On Tue, 10 Jun 2008 16:00:38 +0200 (CEST)
> Johannes Meixner <jsmeix at suse.de> wrote:
>> As far as I see, it seems to be allowed from the legal point
>> of view to have free software that uses non-free libraries
>> because they only say that the program won't be fully usable
>> or not usable at all in a free environment but they don't
>> say it violates the GPL.
No so. As per my reply to Johannes' mail:
This depends on the respective license conditions of the free and
non-free parts. If all of the conditions are not mutually exclusive,
then there is no problem license wise. If even only two of the
conditions are mutually exclusive, you have a license violation on
The above goes for any kind of combination where multiple licenses
are involved, not just when combining with GPL'd software.
>> But what does "If it depends on a non-free library to run at all,
>> it cannot be part of a free operating system such as GNU" mean?
>> Is "cannot be part of GNU" meant as a license violation or
>> just that it cannot be included in a "free operating system"
>> simply because it is useless?
> I think it mean it would be included in debian non-free rather
> than main, for example. or something like that.
Johannes was reading from the GPL FAQ, on gnu.org. A free operating
system would be one that is free in terms of GNU philosophy.
I think the "cannot be part of a free operating system" bit should be
interpreted as "has no place in a free operating system".
Hope this helps,
Olaf Meeuwissen FLOSS Engineer -- AVASYS Corporation
FSF Associate Member #1962 sign up at http://member.fsf.org/
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