[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: GPL and statically linking with non-GPL standard C library

From: Barry Margolin
Subject: Re: GPL and statically linking with non-GPL standard C library
Date: Wed, 26 May 2004 13:01:25 -0400
User-agent: MT-NewsWatcher/3.4 (PPC Mac OS X)

In article <x5n03v2vdi.fsf@lola.goethe.zz>, David Kastrup <> 

> (Alexander R. Pruss) writes:
> > I'd like to distribute GPL code compiled with Borland's C compiler,
> > and statically linked with Borland's C library.  Is this permitted?
> According to what?  The GPL clearly tells you that you have to add the
> source code of your stuff.
> > The question comes down to the GPL exception: "However, as a special
> > exception, the source code distributed need not include anything
> > that is normally distributed (in either source or binary form) with
> > the major components (compiler, kernel, and so on) of the operating
> > system on which the executable runs, unless that component itself
> > accompanies the executable."
> If you have a program intended for a particular compiler/build
> environment, a valid case can be made that the respective libraries
> belong to the program.
> However, since in most cases for a private person the most interesting
> question is not "what is the likelihood for my view to prevail in
> court" but rather "how do I avoid getting into court in the first
> place", the easiest solution is to just ask the copyright holder
> whether your application is what he considers permitted within the
> rights of the licence.

What about "what is the intent of the GPL in this case"?  The intent is 
that the end user should be able to modify the program and rebuild it.  
If the program depends on a library that they're not likely to have, 
they won't be able to rebuild it.  This is why the exception is made for 
components of the OS -- those are expected to be available to the end 
user, so he can rebuild with them.

The LGPL might be a more appropriate solution for this, as long as he's 
able to distribute the object files for the library along with the 
application.  That would allow the end user to modify the GPLed portion 
and relink with the library.

Barry Margolin,
Arlington, MA
*** PLEASE post questions in newsgroups, not directly to me ***

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]