Re: Clarification about Licensing Requirement

On Mon, 2011-07-11 at 17:33 +0530, Mahavir Prasad wrote:
> Thanks Phil!
> The proprietary part of our application can comply with LGPL/AFL libs
> that are used by the NetworkManager. However, my doubts are because of
> the fact that the NetworkManager is licensed as GNU GPL, so using its
> services over D-Bus might not be possible. In this case, the D-Bus
> service is AFL but the daemon to which the proprietary application
> will talk, that is NetworkManager, is GPL.

Using D-Bus as the API is perfectly legal from proprietary programs.
For a huge example, Skype uses D-Bus.  It functions exactly like any IPC
layer and insulates your application completely from the licensing of
NetworkManager.  So go right ahead; this is no different than the Linux
kernel where proprietary programs can push data structures into ioctls
and stuff like that.  Second, data structures themselves are not
copyrightable as they contain no logic; they almost always fall under
the "phonebook" exemptions to copyright law.

Of course, I am not a lawyer and if you have questions, consult your own
lawyers to be sure.  However, using almost any application's API via
D-Bus imposes no licensing requirements or restrictions on the user of
that API.


> Proprietary App     <--------------  DBus----> Network Manager 
> AFAIK, exchange of complex data structures with a GPL'ed code makes
> the whole application GPL. However, I am not sure whether the data
> exchanged in this case will be complex enough or not to make the whole
> app GPL'ed.
> Thanks and Regards,
> Mahavir
> On Mon, Jul 11, 2011 at 3:42 PM, Phil Thompson
> <phil yarwell demon co uk> wrote:
>         On Mon, 2011-07-11 at 03:25 +0530, Mahavir Prasad wrote:
>         > it legal to use the D-Bus interface of NetworkManager in a
>         proprietary
>         > application?
>         IANAL but as I understand it neither licence prohibits use in
>         a
>         proprietary application *provided* the licence of that
>         application
>         complies with requirements placed on it by the licences of its
>         constituent elements.
>         So your licence may have to give the users certain rights in
>         order to
>         comply with LGPL or AFL
>         Phil
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> networkmanager-list gnome org

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