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Licensing issues with a research project

From: Tassilo Horn
Subject: Licensing issues with a research project
Date: Mon, 10 Aug 2009 20:16:28 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/23.1.50 (gnu/linux)

Hi all,

in the last two and a half year, my institute was in a big EU funded
project.  Now that the project is nearly over, we want to open-source
the source code.

The problems we face is that the code from different partners all use
different licenses.  That's the basic architecture:

  - The application is based on the Eclipse platform, which uses the EPL

  - The GUI and overall eclipse integration + some logic is EPL, too

  - Some other logic is GPL

  - There's a huge set of JAR files that are required and that should be
    included in the distribution.  Some JARs are basic third-party tools
    for i.e. command line parsing, but most contain code (and compiled
    class files) for individual components of the overall system.  Here,
    we have a large number of licenses: GPL, LGPL, AGPL, BSD-style (CPL,
    MPL and Apache), and even proprietary licenses (and binary-only

The components provided by us are all free software released as GPL.
Unfortunately, the consortium seems to have decided to use LGPL for the
system, and now wants us to switch from GPL to LGPL.

Of course, we don't want to do that for our code, because it is not only
used in that but in many more projects, too.  But is there a possibility
to change the license for only one specific release that is bundled with
this system?

Or what's the general approach to open-source projects using both GPL
and possibly incompatible licenses?

Thanks for any pointers,

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