Wine license change

John Alvord jalvo at
Mon Feb 11 12:19:08 CST 2002

On Mon, 11 Feb 2002 17:52:07 +0000, James <jas88 at> wrote:

>On Monday 11 February 2002 5:25 pm, John Alvord wrote:
>> At the time, I remember that IBM wanted to use the Apache code in
>> products. The Apache group only agreed under the condition that IBM
>> "paid" by giving back source code changes. That has led to a history
>> of cooperation.
>IBM was already allowed to do what they have done without any negotiation 
>with the Apache group - so why would either side wish to negotiate a more 
>restrictive license for IBM than they have for every other entity on earth, 
>including Microsoft?

Going only from memory, IBM wanted to get a license to use to code...
a written license - the IBM lawyers insisted. Apache is a non-profit
corporation and they didn't want to make give such a special license,
not even for monetary consideration. After discussion, they agreed to
give a written license on the condition that IBM contributed some
Apache code which made NT operation much better performing. Since that
initial lawyer-forced cooperation, things have been a lot more

Just knowing the circumstances, I suspect the IBM programming guys
used the situation as a club against their management to allow them to
give the source changes to Apache. IBM hadn't done a lot of that in
the past. Since then things have opened up quite a bit... you see big
slabs of code coming from IBM Linux development into the Linux base
code all the time. In one recent example, the RCU code (locking
scheme) was covered by a patent owned by a company which IBM had
bought. It took only a week for IBM to send a letter permitting use of
the patented scheme to the developer and to Linus... to avoid any
question of problem.

john alvord


More information about the wine-devel mailing list