mingw use in commercial project

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mingw use in commercial project

Andrej Fogelton
Hi
I read a lot about licensing because I do a commercial project now. What are my obligations when I want to use mingw to compile my proprietary and commercial application? First can I do it? It is a c++ project, so it uses gcc and g++ compilers. Can I redistribute necessary dlls?
Do I have to enclose some notice about their use? I read about runtime exception for GPL license, but sometimes it refers to free software (like tbb https://www.threadingbuildingblocks.org/licensing) and sometimes it is not mentioned. I want to have everything legal.

thank you for help

with kind regards

Andrej


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Re: mingw use in commercial project

Earnie Boyd
On 8/22/2015 9:08 AM, Andrej Fogelton wrote:
> Hi
> I read a lot about licensing because I do a commercial project now. What
> are my obligations when I want to use mingw to compile my proprietary
> and commercial application? First can I do it? It is a c++ project, so
> it uses gcc and g++ compilers. Can I redistribute necessary dlls?

Distributing any GPL licensed binary regardless of the exceptions
requires you to make the source available to the users.  Your safest
thing is to distribute the source of the libraries with the binaries
that require them but you can also offer a statement to provide the
source on request.  The medium of delivery of the source would need to
be the same as the binary.

> Do I have to enclose some notice about their use? I read about runtime
> exception for GPL license, but sometimes it refers to free software
> (like tbb https://www.threadingbuildingblocks.org/licensing) and
> sometimes it is not mentioned. I want to have everything legal.
>

Of course that depends on the exceptions for each library but you should
state that you are using GNU/GPL libraries just to be copacetic and
giving the users as much information as possible regardless of the
exceptions.

The exceptions are toward the license of your commercial product source.
 They are not toward the GPL binaries themselves.  The exceptions remove
the "copyleft" portions of the GPL license that would cause those
libraries to infect the source using those libraries.  The readline
library is an example of a library that does not have any exceptions to
the GPL and would infect any source using that library to also need to
be GPL.

--
Earnie

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Re: mingw use in commercial project

Romain Garbi
Hi,

> The exceptions are toward the license of your commercial product source.
>   They are not toward the GPL binaries themselves.  The exceptions remove
> the "copyleft" portions of the GPL license that would cause those
> libraries to infect the source using those libraries.  The readline
> library is an example of a library that does not have any exceptions to
> the GPL and would infect any source using that library to also need to
> be GPL.
I believed it to be a little complicated than that. Maybe I'm wrong, I
think it depends on "derivative work" means. I've seen people arguing
whether or not linking itself (I mean, without modification) creates
derivative works. Some saying "it does", some other saying "depends on
the linkage mode" and others saying "no, sure". And most of them weren't
lawyers anyway. Well, hard to figure out (i'm not a lawyer either), but
I believe linking (without modifying the software) should not lead to
derivative work. Well, anyway, it seems not to be so uncommon to see
developers abusing from rights provided by copyright.

Romain GARBI




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Re: mingw use in commercial project

Earnie Boyd
On 8/25/2015 6:09 AM, Romain Garbi wrote:

> Hi,
>
>> The exceptions are toward the license of your commercial product source.
>>   They are not toward the GPL binaries themselves.  The exceptions remove
>> the "copyleft" portions of the GPL license that would cause those
>> libraries to infect the source using those libraries.  The readline
>> library is an example of a library that does not have any exceptions to
>> the GPL and would infect any source using that library to also need to
>> be GPL.
> I believed it to be a little complicated than that. Maybe I'm wrong, I
> think it depends on "derivative work" means. I've seen people arguing
> whether or not linking itself (I mean, without modification) creates
> derivative works. Some saying "it does", some other saying "depends on
> the linkage mode" and others saying "no, sure". And most of them weren't
> lawyers anyway. Well, hard to figure out (i'm not a lawyer either), but
> I believe linking (without modifying the software) should not lead to
> derivative work. Well, anyway, it seems not to be so uncommon to see
> developers abusing from rights provided by copyright.

Using a library to create a different binary is a derivative of that
library because the binary contains parts of the library.  It is the
reason why without an exception for the copyleftness of the GPL a
library causes your work to also be GPL.  Exceptions are granted for the
libraries intrinsic to the compilers that are also embedded in the
compiled and linked code because they are necessary for any executable
and GNU wants the compilers and linkers it produces to be able to be
used by everyone.  Libraries not intrinsic to the compilers and linkers
may or may not have exceptions.

--
Earnie

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Re: mingw use in commercial project

Romain Garbi
> Using a library to create a different binary is a derivative of that
> library because the binary contains parts of the library.  It is the
> reason why without an exception for the copyleftness of the GPL a
> library causes your work to also be GPL.  Exceptions are granted for the
> libraries intrinsic to the compilers that are also embedded in the
> compiled and linked code because they are necessary for any executable
> and GNU wants the compilers and linkers it produces to be able to be
> used by everyone.  Libraries not intrinsic to the compilers and linkers
> may or may not have exceptions.
It is at least what GNU guys say. I mean, it's still unclear whether a
law court will actually consider that linkage implies derivative work,
depending on jurisdiction and/or court.

For instance, some Linux contributors will say that dynamic linkage do
not result in derivative work, since the GPL'ed library itself is not
modified. whatever, given the definition of "derivative work", both
approaches seem relevant.

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