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Re: Do I have to release the patch for a GPL software under GPL?

From: John Hasler
Subject: Re: Do I have to release the patch for a GPL software under GPL?
Date: Mon, 08 May 2006 16:29:57 -0500
User-agent: Gnus/5.110004 (No Gnus v0.4) Emacs/21.4 (gnu/linux)

Dancefire writes:
> This maybe is simple, since the kernel is not given to anyone, only
> internal using. It's get more complex if they give the kernel/patch to
> another military/security agent organization. Do they have to make the
> patch open?

No.  They merely need to provide source to those they distribute binaries
to.  The GPL does not require publication.

> I am trying to make its possible to use Linux under this situation,
> otherwise, *BSD is the only choice.

It's quite possible and legal.  Just be sure you always provide source
(under the terms of the GPL, of course) along with binaries to anyone you
distribute to.  You get to choose who to distribute binaries to, and as
long as you provide source with them you need not provide source to anyone

BTW if the source for the patch is of any use to the opposition in breaking
the security it supposedly provides it isn't worth much anyway.  Better to
contribute your improvements to the main kernel and let the community help
you debug and improve them.  

You _do_ know about SELinux, don't you?
John Hasler
Dancing Horse Hill
Elmwood, WI USA

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