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Subject: Re: [boost] BOOST license & GPL
From: Andrey Semashev (andrey.semashev_at_[hidden])
Date: 2017-04-01 19:27:05

On Sat, Apr 1, 2017 at 9:33 PM, Oliver Kowalke via Boost
<boost_at_[hidden]> wrote:
> 2017-04-01 20:22 GMT+02:00 Niklas Angare via Boost <boost_at_[hidden]>:
> That's what I'm reading too. The Free Software Foundation believes the
>> Boost Software License is "compatible" with the GPL:
> I'm refer to
> :
> '*Where it gets tricky*
> Let's say we have project Foo licensed under Boost, and project Bar
> licensed under GPL and which wants to use Foo.
> Bar+Foo is allowed since the licenses are compatible, and the release of
> Bar+Foo must be GPL as Bar is GPL. Foo, by itself and without Bar *or*
> Bar+Foo, is still available under the Boost license. Said another way,
> Bar+Foo has no license impact upon Foo itself.
> The resulting license of the project combination is a forward acting event
> for the combination only. It is *not* a retroactive event.
> So if someone else wants to take Foo and do something else with it, they
> are still free to do so without the copyleft provision of the GPL. However,
> if they take Bar+Foo, delete Bar and only use +Foo then they are still
> bound by the terms of the GPL since Bar+Foo was GPL'd.'

The important part here is that you were distributed Foo+Bar, and this
combination is under the GPL. I.e. if you want to use Foo+Bar, even if
you don't directly interface with Bar, you have to comply with the

You can remove Bar from this combination and use Foo alone under the
BSL, according to the FAQ entry I linked earlier:

Another important part is that the distributor has no right to
distribute Foo alone under the GPL. He must also comply with the BSL
as he deals with Foo.

>> There is a definition of "compatible" in the gpl-faq you linked. Another
>> is here:
>> But if they distribute the whole thing saying "this is licensed under the
>> GPL", doesn't that kind of contradict the requirement to include the Boost
>> Software License and the copyright notices? It would feel better to me if
>> they said "this is licensed under the GPL and, in part, other compatible
>> licenses".
> Kicad:
> Program License
> KiCad is free software. KiCad is made available under the GNU General
> Public License(GPL) version 3 or greater.
> There is no requirement to assign your copyright to anyone to get code
> included into KiCad. The only thing we do require is complying with the
> GPLv3+ license both in the code you may write and code you may import from
> others.
> If I understand it correctly, the copied boost code is now licensed under
> GPLv3

Does their code distribution (as a package or VCS) contain BSL text?
Do the BSL-licensed files still contain the copyrights and a link to
the BSL?

If not, they are clearly violating the BSL and should be notified.

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