I'm currently creating installers/builders which will allow a specific Linux distro to be installed in a bunch of different container frameworks (Such as Docker). The distro is licensed under GPL3. Do installers/builders count as derivative? It doesn't feel like it would. Can I license these builders however I want?

The distro itself is created with a build script. In order to get my project working, I must run their build script. I have not yet had to modify it but I might need to. That seems like it would be a separate project/license situation though and the base builder I create will still be free of GPL? Currently, my installer downloads the distro's build script and runs it as part of its magic.

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If your installer/builder just takes the build script of the distro as input and it can work with any build script (i.e., your installer/builder does not contain knowledge that is specific to the build script of a particular distro and that can only be learned from looking at GPL-licensed code), then your installer/builder is an independent work as far as copyright is concerned and you are completely free in your choice of license.

If you need to make changes to the (GPL-licensed) build script of a distro to make it acceptable for your installer/builder, then that modified build script is a derived work of the original and needs to be released under the GPL license. That does not affect the license status of the installer/builder itself.

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