Licensing of float.h and stdarg.h

  • Doug Semler

    Doug Semler - 2010-03-31

    Small concern with respect to the licensing of float.h and stdarg.h (going back to the gcc issue to begin with) and it has to do with the licensing of these two files.  Right now these files are licensed with the runtime library exception, which requires their usage be restricted to eligible compilers (actually, the current licensing in mingw64 specifies compilation with only GCC, but the new license in GCC version have a slightly different exception).  Anyway, this pretty much precludes compiling the runtime with any compiler other than gcc (or with updated files a GPL compatible one).

    While I understand completely that the runtime only supports compilation under GCC, almost all of the CRT  is PD.  Which means that there is nothing to preclude someone from attempting to create a fork that is compiled under say MSVC (not saying it would work).  Except for these two files (and the winsub headers).  I think that somewhere in the copying.txt files, there needs to be a prominent notice about this fact….(and maybe the license in these files should be updated to match the current licensing of the gcc headers with the newer runtime exception).

    (Oh, and I notice that the winusb headers are copyright the project - those should probably be listed in the notices as well)…

  • Kai Tietz

    Kai Tietz - 2010-03-31

    Well, why we should update here license. It is a clone of those files (with some additions) as gcc isn't able to allow additional next_include in their version. So we provide a version here which can be used instead (This issue is already pretty well discussed in other threads).

    The licensing issue about Winusb.h (and other headers will have the ZPL license in future) is reasoned by the following fact.   PD is not in all countries a known legal term, what means that PD falls back to authors copyright in those countries. For prevent this and give a general copyright which works in all countries we choose the ZPL license. It is an open source license and as long as you prominent mark where you have taken the sources from there is no issue about forking (beside I wouldn't welcome this, but this is my private feeling ;) ).
    As we at the moment are just supporting gcc as compiler, our project can live by float.h and stdarg.h, If other compilers are interested to get supported by us (or they want to support us), then we will happily discuss to rewrite stdarg.h and float.h.



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