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Questions tagged [gpl]

The GNU's General Public License, a commonly-used free software license. The GPL has various versions, v1-v3, so use this tag only for questions talking about overarching issues of the licenses or shared characteristics. For example, for a question about a unique section on version 3, use the [tag:gpl-3] tag.

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22
votes
7answers
3k views

Are pirated GPL-derived “premium themes” legal?

A fellow Drupal developer is suggesting that we use themes from a collection of "Premium" paid Drupal themes downloaded from a torrent site on a shared project. It appears that most or all of these ...
6
votes
1answer
160 views

Which license should I use when my project uses plugins under various licenses?

I am confused about choosing a license for my project. I have read some resources like Open Source Initiative and Choosealicense.com, though. My project is a mobile application for Android. Now, it's ...
7
votes
2answers
706 views

GPLv3: Re-Release app under different branding

I have build an open source audiobook player which is licensed under gpl v3. Yesterday someone sent me a mail with the topic 'Violation of source code license' including a link to an app that seems ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Can I redistribute libstdc++ with proprietary software?

So, libstdc++ has the runtime exception that permits even proprietary software to use libstdc++. But, hypothetically, can I actually distribute a non-modified binary of libstdc++ along with a binary ...
9
votes
3answers
198 views

Using copyleft licenses for non-programming purposes

Well, what I love about GPL is that any derivative work using GPL-licensed work also needs to be GPL licensed, which guarantees that derivative work is open-source, i.e. when requested the source of ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

How to license software that implements a well-documented algorithm, but which does not borrow source from the official library?

I have implemented an RSYNC library based on the technical report by Andrew Tridgell and Paul Mackerras. The library implementation does not borrow code from the official RSYNC library and does not ...
14
votes
1answer
418 views

GPL - Does “internal use” apply for a public gameserver?

While reading through the GPL FAQ I found some relevant points to the question, however it is still unclear to me if this fully applies to a public gameserver. I'll try to keep it short: There is a ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Removing the original copyright line from footer

There's this web app licensed under GPLv3 that I'd like to deploy. However, the footer of each page has a copyright line, e.g., "© 2015 FooBar Inc.". Is it okay to remove that line and/or replace it ...
3
votes
0answers
48 views

Difference between creative commons and GPL? [duplicate]

Why shouldn't I release code under a Creative Commons License? For me the CC-BY-SA sounds very nice and is quite more readable than a whole GPL license, so I would like to know why its such a bad ...
14
votes
2answers
4k views

Why is GPLv2 incompatible with GPLv3?

As I understood in this wonderful answer, GPLv3 and GPLv2 code can't be used simultanously in the same product. Why?
29
votes
2answers
14k views

Why does Linux still use the GPLv2?

As I know, Linux intentionally avoids the switch from GPLv2 to GPLv3. It has the unfortunate side-effect, that it doesn't take part in the defense of the opensource world from the most recent danger, ...
4
votes
1answer
252 views

GPL vs. obligatory warranty

There are many countries on the world, where distributing products means to accept an obligatory warranty well. More clearly: if you buy a mainboard, and it is bad, the seller must re-take it (with ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

is CC BY license GPL compatible? CC BY vs CC0

CC0 license is GPL compatible. A component with such license can be included in GPL-licensed product. Is this true also for CC BY license? What is the difference between CC0 and CC BY licenses? ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

Am I in danger if a project component is relicensed?

I am currently managing a project, which includes a library that is licensed under the MIT license. My current project is licensed under the Apache 2.0 license. The maintainers of the library that I ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

When is my project a derivative work in an interpreted language?

With compiled languages, I understand when a work is considered derivative of another and thus, a license such as the GNU GPL covers the whole work. However, with interpreted languages such as PHP or ...
9
votes
1answer
241 views

GPL interpretation - What is our legal exposure if we include another project's code?

I am a contributor to a very old project presently licensed under the GPL. Our project is a plugin for a closed-source program, but the GPL does not permit this kind of linking. The GPL FAQ states: ...
7
votes
1answer
457 views

GPL Violation - What is our legal exposure to third parties (not our contributors)?

I am a contributor to a very old project presently in violation of the GPL. Our project is a plugin for a closed-source program, but the GPL does not permit this kind of linking. The project should ...
8
votes
2answers
366 views

Relicensing from GPL v2 to LGPL v2 - What if I can't contact all contributors?

I am a contributor to a very old project presently in violation of the GPL. Our project is a plugin for a closed-source program, but the GPL does not permit this kind of linking. The project should ...
6
votes
2answers
671 views

Can I relicense software under the modified BSD licence?

I want to modify and merge some software that is available under the two clause BSD license into a project that is available under the GNU GPL version 2. I want to distribute the result under the GNU ...
9
votes
1answer
671 views

How does the GPL's linking restriction apply when using a proprietary library with GPL'd interpreted code?

General description: Can I create Python software that will dynamically link against a closed-source library that has a C API (the Python interpreter is not copyleft) and will also utilize a GPL ...
5
votes
2answers
210 views

Copyleft license that allows usage in plugins of closed-source host applications

I wrote a library that I want to release under the GPL to prevent it from being incorporated in closed source software. I do not want people to use this library in their closed source commercial ...
12
votes
2answers
3k views

Can plugins for closed source software use GPL'd libraries?

I use closed-source scientific software for my work. I also use GPL licensed tools and libraries. It would save me a lot of time to be able to call a GPL library directly from the closed-source ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Do I have to disclose the source code of a Linux Driver I have not developed?

A 3rd-party Hardware manufacturing company is willing to sell me a Linux Driver for one of their products. The third-party company claims that the Linux Driver is derivative work of the driver they ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Proprietary software using GPL modules

This question is bases on: Why doesn't this GPL loophole work? If a program uses a GPL derived component, does said program also have to be GPL? For example: If a game uses a music player that ...
24
votes
2answers
5k views

Why doesn't this GPL loophole work?

Suppose Alice makes some proprietary software. The source is available, but under a proprietary license which prohibits derivative works and sublicensing. Bob writes some GPLv3 code. Carol prepares ...
7
votes
1answer
698 views

What's the typical practice for cases when OSS license violation is found and fixed?

Suppose I ship binaries of a closed source product and it just so happens that there's a piece of GPL source code inside my giant codebase that I'm unaware of. At some point I find this GPL code and ...
7
votes
1answer
819 views

What copyleft license should I use for my website's HTML/CSS/JavaScript?

If I made a somewhat complicated website, and I want it (the layout/JavaScript) to be under a copyleft license (but not the text), which license should I use? I want to pull others' forks so I have ...
19
votes
2answers
2k views

How is Oracle suing Google for copyright infringement when Java is Open Source?

There is a case between Google and Oracle over the use of Java and it's standard library on the Google Android operating system. From [this article]: To recap: Oracle accused Google of ...
16
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the difference between GPL + Classpath exception vs LGPL

Java and a few java libraries provide a "classpath" exception. To me, this seems similar to the LGPL's linking exceptions. What is the difference between the GPL with a classpath exception and the ...
26
votes
8answers
37k views

Can GPL licenced software be used in corporate environments?

If software is licenced under a GPL license, can it be used without restriction in a corporate/commercial environment? The software that I am refering to is QGIS which provides this description: ...
13
votes
1answer
510 views

Is there a reason to prefer the SimPL over the GPL? Does it carry the same legal weight?

I just came across the SimPL License which is described as: This Simple Public License 2.0 (SimPL-2.0 for short) is a plain language implementation of GPL 2.0. The words are different, but the ...
7
votes
2answers
140 views

Are dates mandatory in GPL licences?

According to Wikipedia's Copyright Formalities and Copyright notice, dating or even putting the author copyright notice in unnecessary. And then explanations such as this Stack Overflow Post make me ...
1
vote
1answer
65 views

Changing code of an existing opensource application [closed]

I want to start an IDE (GPL compatible) based on QtCreator code (that is licensed under GPL and LGPL). Do I have to change all files/classes names within QtCreator source code because of L/GPL ...
13
votes
2answers
948 views

Are you obliged to enforce your license?

I've got a number of software projects, licensed under varying licenses. For simplicity, let's take one of them, licensed under the GPL. Obviously, the GPL requires various things, and there may be ...
8
votes
2answers
320 views

Does sharing a file format make two programs either a combined or derived work?

This is a follow on from Does a file format constitute an API? This is an attempt to break down: Does a host application's license apply to plug-ins written for it? into the underlying questions. ...
18
votes
4answers
606 views

What are the arguments for considering dynamic links to *not* constitute derivative works?

The status of programs which are dynamically linked with Copyleft licensed binaries (such as a .dll) is contentious. I have created two questions for each side of the debate. The other can be found ...
12
votes
2answers
510 views

What are the arguments for considering dynamic links to constitute derivative works?

The status of programs which are dynamically linked with Copyleft licensed binaries (such as a .dll) is contentious. I have created two questions for each side of the debate. The other can be found ...
10
votes
2answers
930 views

Does the GNU GPL 3 prohibit DRM?

Is DRM, which some spell as "Digital Rights Management", others as "Digital Restriction Management", allowed by the GPL? In other words, can software that implements DRM be licensed under the GPL? ...
17
votes
1answer
1k views

GPL v3 “convey” vs. GPL v2 “distribute”

I've noticed that the GNU GPL version 3 uses the word "convey" where version 2 used "distriubte": GNU GPLv3: To “convey” a work means any kind of propagation that enables other parties to make or ...
10
votes
2answers
916 views

Can I omit the preamble of the GPL?

The GNU GPL is very long. If I have to include a copy of it with my program, can I drop the preamble to save space?
8
votes
3answers
662 views

Does using the GPL for a program make it GNU software?

Let's assume I write a program and release it under the GNU GPL. Can I call this software "GNU software"? If not, what is necessary to make it a part of GNU?
22
votes
2answers
1k views

How does GPL affect binary-only modifications?

GPL is a copyleft license where, if I make modifications to the source code and distribute the resulting binary, I need to provide the modified source code also under the GPL. What happens if I make ...
17
votes
3answers
811 views

With GPL, what does “source code” mean for non-software?

GPL is a license designed primarily for software, but it can be used for non-software. The license text has many mentions of "source code", which is ambiguous for non-software. GNU/FSF claim that GPL ...
7
votes
2answers
273 views

Can I make a derived work of a GPL project and a non GPL project for personal use?

In the GNU General Public License, version 2, some limits on how you can modify the Program are listed. Point 2.b states that (emphasis mine): You must cause any work that you distribute or publish,...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

Do I have to release my code as GPL when a Java Library is GPL

I have found a Java library that can be used under the GPL licence (not the LGPL licence). Can I embed the library in my program without the requirement of using the GPL licence? I have no ...
26
votes
6answers
9k views

Can I take BSD licensed code and distribute it under GPL?

Or in more general terms: Can I take code which is licensed under a permissive open source license (like the BSD license) and distribute it under a copyleft free software license (like the GPL)? ...
10
votes
2answers
676 views

GPL licenced code for a module of a closed source program

I want to create a dynamically loadable module (.dll or .so) for a closed source program, but I would like to make the source code of this module available, and I'd like it to be (A)GPL licensed, so ...
20
votes
1answer
363 views

What are the licensing terms of the text of the GPL?

The text of the GPLv3 starts with the following disclaimer: Everyone is permitted to copy and distribute verbatim copies of this license document, but changing it is not allowed. What does this ...
23
votes
2answers
2k views

What happens if very common code is released under GPL?

I know GPL can be used as an open-source license for source code etc. But what if the source code released has very few lines and has a lot of probability that it might also have been written already ...
29
votes
3answers
2k views

Do I really need to include a licence file for common licences like GPL or MIT?

The GPL3, for example, says: Conveying Verbatim Copies. You may convey verbatim copies of the Program's source code as you receive it, in any medium, provided that you conspicuously and ...