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From: "David Schwartz" <>
To: <>
Cc: <>,
	"Andrew Morton" <>,
	"Ingo Molnar" <>,
	"Arnaldo Carvalho de Melo" <>,
	<>, "Alan Cox" <>
Subject: RE: [PATCH] 2.6.25-rc2-mm1 - fix mcount GPL bogosity.
Date: Tue, 26 Feb 2008 10:19:42 -0800	[thread overview]
Message-ID: <> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <m3d4qj90zm.fsf@maximus.localdomain>

> "David Schwartz" <> writes:

> > I don't know who told you that or why, but it's obvious nonsense,

> Correct.

> > Exports should be marked GPL if and only if they cannot be used
> > except in a derivative work. If it is possible to use them
> > without taking
> > sufficient protectable expression, they should not be marked GPL.

> This isn't very obvious to me.

It may not be obvious, but it is the design and purpose of marking exports

> The licence doesn't talk about GPL or non-GPL exports. It doesn't
> restrict the use, only distribution of the software. One is free to
> remove _GPL from the code and distribute it anyway (except perhaps for
> some DMCA nonsense).

That's true. The DMCA doesn't prevent it, since marking symbols is *not* a
license enforcement mechanism.

> If a code is a derivative work it has to be distributed (use is not
> restricted) under GPL, EXPORT _GPL or not _GPL.

Of course.

> One may say _GPL is a strong indication that all users are
> automatically a derivative works, but it's only that - indication. It
> doesn't mean they are really derivative works and it doesn't mean a
> module not using any _GPL exports isn't a derivative.

Of course. (The only people who argue otherwise are the 'linking makes a
derivative work' idiots.)

> I think introducing these _GPL symbols was a mistake in the first place.

Perhaps, since people seem to be trying to refight the same battles again.

The agreement made when the feature was added was that EXPORT_GPL was not a
license enforcement mechanism but was an indication that someone believed
that any use of the symbol was possible only a derivative work that would
need to be distributed under the GPL.

> Actually I think the _GPL exports are really harmful - somebody
> distributing a binary module may claim he/she doesn't violate the GPL
> because the module uses only non-GPL exports.

Anyone can argue anything. That would be an obviously stupid argument.
Perhaps clearer documentation might be helpful, but the GPL speaks for

> OTOH GPL symbols give
> _us_ exactly nothing.

They serve as a warning and, as a practical matter, may make it a bit more
difficult to violate the license.


  parent reply	other threads:[~2008-02-26 18:21 UTC|newest]

Thread overview: 22+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2008-02-25 17:59 Valdis.Kletnieks
2008-02-25 18:23 ` Steven Rostedt
2008-02-25 18:19   ` Alan Cox
2008-02-25 19:27     ` Adrian Bunk
2008-02-25 19:48       ` Alan Cox
2008-02-25 20:09         ` Adrian Bunk
2008-02-25 20:38           ` Alan Cox
2008-02-25 21:17       ` Valdis.Kletnieks
2008-02-26  1:30   ` David Schwartz
2008-02-26 12:29     ` Alan Cox
2008-02-26 15:43     ` Krzysztof Halasa
2008-02-26 17:04       ` Krzysztof Halasa
2008-02-26 17:21         ` Alan Cox
2008-02-26 17:44           ` Krzysztof Halasa
2008-02-26 18:04             ` Alan Cox
2008-02-26 18:19       ` David Schwartz [this message]
2008-02-26 23:13         ` Krzysztof Halasa
2008-02-26 23:35           ` David Schwartz
2008-02-27  0:05             ` Krzysztof Halasa
2008-02-27  0:28               ` David Schwartz
2008-02-27 10:31           ` Alan Cox
2008-02-27 10:55             ` Krzysztof Halasa

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