On Sun, Dec 31, 2006 at 03:59:29PM +0100, Martijn van Oosterhout wrote:
> Please read the OpenSSL-GPL FAQ. They themselves acknowledge it's a
> problem, but claim they fall under the "operating system exception",
> which is fine for everyone except the distributor of the operating
> They recommend that if you want to use OpenSSL, use a licence other
> than the GPL.
I believe this to be a slight misrepresentation. The section before
states "The OpenSSL team does not offer legal advice." The section you
quote then goes on to contradict this, by stating a position much more
conservative than your summary:
On many systems including the major Linux and BSD distributions,
yes (the GPL does not place restrictions on using libraries that
are part of the normal operating system distribution).
On other systems, the situation is less clear. Some GPL software
copyright holders claim that you infringe on their rights if you
use OpenSSL with their software on operating systems that don't
normally include OpenSSL.
If you develop open source software that uses OpenSSL, you may
find it useful to choose an other license than the GPL, or state
explicitly that "This program is released under the GPL with the
additional exemption that compiling, linking, and/or using OpenSSL
is allowed." If you are using GPL software developed by others,
you may want to ask the copyright holder for permission to use
their software with OpenSSL.
It seems your interpretation of the OpenSSL "position" is as
questionable as your interpretation of the GPL, and what the GPL can
legally require. :-)
Nobody has proven an issue exists. The only way to prove it would be
for an actual court case to set the precident.
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