GPL and LGPL not acceptable for Fedora!

Hans de Goede j.w.r.degoede at
Thu Aug 16 04:57:16 UTC 2007

Eric Sandeen wrote:
> Tom "spot" Callaway wrote:
>> NOTE: Don't trust COPYING. Look at the source code itself.
> So, I own xfsprogs.
> source code itself only says things like:
>  * This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or
>  * modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as
>  * published by the Free Software Foundation.
> but then the included COPYING file says:
> The library named "libhandle" and some specific header files (including
> <xfs/xfs.h>) are licensed under the GNU Lesser General Public License.
> All other components are licensed under the GNU General Public License.
> ... and then COPYING includes the text of LGPL2.1 and GPL2, specifically.
> I'll ask sgi for clarification but in the months while their lawyers go
> read the GPLv3, does it look like it would be appropriate to assume
> GPLv2 and LGPLv2 for now, based on the included COPYING file?
> (oh - and can my package be both GPLv2 and LGPLv2, or do I need to tease
> this apart into 2 packages now...)

The version of the COPYING[.lib] file is not relevant if the sourcecoe doesn't 
contain a version its GPL+ resp. LGPLv2+

About GPL and LGPL. If libhandle is distributed as a seperate file under 
/usr/lib, then the license tag would be:

License: GPL+ and LGPLv2+

If libhandle is statically linked into the binaries and not distributed 
seperately in /usr/lib, then the GPL trums the LGPL and the license tag becomes:

License: GPLv2+

(The v2 comes from the LGPL code incorperated into the binaries)

If you distribute the lib under /usr/lib, you may want todo a -libs subpackage 
for that and use "License: GPL+" for the main package and "License: LGPLv2+" 
for the -libss and -devel sub-packages. The idea behind this tags is that 
interpackage licensing issues can be checked by a script, using:
License: GPL+ and LGPLv2+
Is not going to help this script, resulting in people still needing to check 
things manually.


Hans (Who has 2 packages of his 150 left todo and then the License tagging 
operation is completed for me).

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