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We started to use an open source library in one of our projects, and now we need to do some custom modifications to this library. The source of this library is distributed under LGPL and I need some help in identifying whether we would violate LGPL terms/conditions if we follow an approach detailed below.

Facts:

  • The source is open and available in Github. License is LGPL.
  • The built artifact is also available in the Maven central.
  • However, in the version available in the Maven central, there are some issues/improvements that we have identified for our need.

What we plan to do:

  1. Take a clone of this project.
  2. Modify the source code to meet our requirements.
  3. Commit the modifications (to keep backup) to our Git (not a public Git).
  4. Integrate the building of this library into our Jenkins (via our Git).
  5. New artifact to be made available in our Nexus (private Nexus).
  6. We would also like to change the group id of this artifact when moving to our Git and Nexus.
  7. New artifact will be used as a dependency in internal projects via our Nexus.

Are we violating any LGPL terms/conditions in following the above approach?

6

If your "internal projects" are not being released outside of your organization, then you should be fine. Your modifications do fall under the LGPL, but if you aren't releasing your modified library in binary form to the general public, there's no one in the general public that has the right to request to see your library's source code.

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You should consider this carefully. In time, your internal version will diverge enough from upstream to make picking up fixes hard (and need vetting changes to see how they interact with local modifications). It is just easier to dig in and work with upstream as far as possible.

Yes, you are probably deluded into thinking your modifications make a quantum leap in something. If it really was so, they would be a bad match for upstream, and write from scratch. Better have others help out.

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