The FreeBSD ports system is not itself published under a GPLv2 license.
The GPL only imposes requirements on programs copied or derived from other
GPL programs. Its requirements neither apply to separate programs that
are used to distribute GPL-licensed software nor to separate programs that are bundled together with non-GPL programs. The GPL license calls the latter case "mere aggregation."
The FreeBSD Ports Collection is a web site hosted at
The software which runs on their web server that shows you the Ports
Collection pages, provides the search ports function, downloading and other features is a separate program
from any of the packages they provide for download. FreeBSD also provides non-web based programs to
manage ports, and the same reasoning applies to those programs. None of the Ports related programs (the server software; the non-web based programs) need to be GPLed.
As for the "ports" themselves:
Is it true that all of these patch files and Make-related files,
some of which (IIUC) seem to be intended to interact with the MySQL
source code at a level that will cause their contents to be compiled
into the same executable as MySQL, and that have no other identifiable
purpose, really constitute a "separate program" that is "merely
aggregated" as set out in the FAQ item that you linked?
According to the FreeBSD ports page:
The Ports Collection is a set of Makefiles, patches, and description files. Each set of these files is used to compile and install an individual application on FreeBSD, and is called a port.
My understanding of the description is that the Ports Collection does
not contain MySQL itself. Using their software, you download MySQL
source, you download the
FreeBSD port, and then you compile that into something that works
on your FreeBSD system.
If you use the Ports system to make such a MySQL binary, then clearly
that binary is a derivative work of MySQL, so if you distribute the binary
to someone else, you would need to comply with MySQL's license, probably by
distributing the source code of the version of MySQL you used plus the
patches and scripts supplied by the FreeBSD ports project. See GPLv2 section 3:
For an executable work, complete source code means all the source code for all modules it contains, plus any associated interface definition files, plus the scripts used to control compilation and installation of the executable.
The only question is whether distributing only the patches and scripts
by themselves (this is what the Ports Collection appears to do) therefore obligates
the Ports project to supply the corresponding MySQL
source code from their own servers. Presumably, their downloading tool automates the process of downloading the corresponding MySQL source code along with the patches and Makefiles. If the corresponding source code
became unavailable and the patches and Makefiles continued to be distributed,
they would probably be obligated to provide the corresponding MySQL source code to you by some means, at least via a
written offer valid for at least three years (See GPLv2 Section 3b).