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GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
22-09-2013, 03:35 PM,
GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Hello everyone. This is my first post, and if everything goes right, there will be many more.
I have a few questions about the license:

1) if it's GPL, then no project that uses Pinguino is legal and closed source at the same time. Is it GPL? Is there an exception? I would like to develop a closed source project using it.

2) if it's LGPL, how do you use it? AFAIK there is no way to compile pinguino in a separate shared library that any user can modify without giving the project source code (not just the pinguino library)

3) Each file should have a small reference to the license according to the gnu instructions. Why isn't it there?

Thanks everyone! keep up the good work.
24-09-2013, 08:46 AM, (This post was last modified: 24-09-2013, 08:47 AM by Pinguino.)
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Re licence, see:
24-09-2013, 02:11 PM,
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Thanks for the reply, but yes, I saw the wiki age and the main pinguino page. The main page says GPL v2, SOME source files say GPL v3 (pid.c library), then the wiki says "GPL/LGPL"... those seem similar, but there are completely different licenses. I tried to look for it in the code, but there are no signs of a COPYING file. And not all source files have a license either (and they are different in each source!).

I was looking for something like this (extracted from the SDCC source code). Make special attention to the last few lines, where it mentions the exceptions:

i2c.h - I2C communications module library header
Copyright © 2005, Vangelis Rokas <vrokas AT>
This library is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it
under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the
Free Software Foundation; either version 2, or (at your option) any
later version.
This library is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
GNU General Public License for more details.
You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
along with this library; see the file COPYING. If not, write to the
Free Software Foundation, 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston,
MA 02110-1301, USA.

###############here is the exception I was talking about#######
As a special exception, if you link this library with other files,
some of which are compiled with SDCC, to produce an executable,
this library does not by itself cause the resulting executable to
be covered by the GNU General Public License. This exception does
not however invalidate any other reasons why the executable file
might be covered by the GNU General Public License.

If the license is GPL, I believe this is all we would need to make it compatible with closed source projects. The license should be included in all library files. Each source file should have a GPL, or LGPL license (which I couldn't find). And a "COPYING" file with the entire license should be included in the source.

Right now it's not clear which files are licensed under which license.
24-09-2013, 06:37 PM,
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Various files, such as one you quoted, added by various people so may have any licence. Doesn't look like most have given it much if any thought. Similar problem afflicted Linux years back so similar solution may be needed.

30-09-2013, 04:10 AM, (This post was last modified: 04-11-2013, 03:39 AM by FlacoDev.)
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Well; the GNU General Public License is a copylefted license and GNU Lesser General Public License isn't.
The "main" difference between those licenses is that; if you use a GNU GPL licensed code, you have to share your code under the same license.
The LGPL gives you the "liberty" to make proprietary software (what you wrongfully call "closed sources").

I'm not sure since I read "Open-Source" on Olimex's website, when I purchased my PIC32-Pinguino-MX220 but if the Pinguino products are under a GNU GPLv2 or GNU LGPL license it means that it is Free (Libre) software.
It's not really the same thing as Open-Source.
So I don't know; the link you gave is not really helpful since the lack of informations. (sadly).

But if the Pinguino libs (if there is) are under GPL you can't make proprietary software with this code. (It'll be simply illegal)

If you want more information about the GNU GPL, GNU LGPL, difference between OSS and Free/Libre Software and the freedom with hardware look at those links:
- A quick guide to GPLv3
- GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL)
- Why Open Source misses the point of Free software

And here's a discussion via mail I had with Richard M. Stallman (creator of the GNU Project and Free/Libre philosophy):

- "Some questions about Freedom & hardware" (my mail to rms)
- "Re: Some questions about Freedom & hardware" (his answer)

Hope it'll helps,
Take care and Free your software Wink
30-09-2013, 08:26 AM,
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Olimex are mainly hardware i.e. OSHW.

30-09-2013, 11:58 AM,
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
I see; what about the license here then?

Thank you for the fast answer,

Flaco :)
30-09-2013, 12:20 PM,
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Beats me.

Also, cannot apply to sources from elsewhere with a contrary licence.

09-10-2013, 07:31 PM,
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
I am also interested in this subject.

What the license says about selling ?
Let's say that I make my own board which features a pic32 440 and I use the already existing bootloader. Then, I develop my code, which will be freely available and modifiable, and then i sell the product which has code and hardware, is that ok with the pinguino license?

09-10-2013, 08:25 PM,
RE: GPL, LGPL and closed source projects
Hello javyog,

The "Free" in Free software stands for "freedom" (think "freedom of speech", not "free beer"); so there is no problem about selling Free software. Smile

More information here if you want: Selling Free Software.

Happy hacking

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