[coreboot] libpayload: OHCI stack

Patrick Georgi patrick at georgi-clan.de
Mon Oct 5 10:14:19 CEST 2009

Am Montag, den 05.10.2009, 09:55 +0200 schrieb Daniel Mack:
> The code is derived from GPL'ed sources, so it's GPL, yes. But quoting
> from the LICENSES file:
>   The copyright on libpayload is owned by various individual developers
>   and/or companies. Please check the individual source files for details.
> So where so you see the problem?
This statement talks about copyright. The issue is licensing.

Right now, libpayload is BSD licensed, so users of the library are free
to do whatever they please with the code (except removing copyright

A libpayload with your patches becomes (as a combined work) GPL licensed
(the BSD portions are sublicensed as GPL, which is possible), which
restricts the uses of it, and imposes conditions on the user beyond
leaving the copyright notices alone.

It would be possible to add a "GPL" configuration flag, and let the OHCI
driver depend on it, so people have to choose "libpayload, GPL edition"
to get this driver.

But then, what happens if someone comes along with a zfs driver (derived
from OpenSolaris, hence CDDL)? People have to decide to use either BSD
+CDDL or BSD+GPL code - ie. either OHCI or ZFS, as the GPL doesn't allow
code under different licenses, and both GPL and CDDL don't allow

Such a model isn't really sustainable with many licenses (and why should
the GPL get any special treatment?), and that's the (good) reason why
very few projects do that.


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