Wine1.0 and LGPLv3?

Michael Stefaniuc mstefani at
Wed Mar 19 14:55:42 CDT 2008

Ian Macfarlane wrote:
> Just to resurrect this topic, as last time, of the responses to my
> email, two were positive (and the other just pointed out that I'd
> mistaken the Samba licensing for LGPL instead of GPL) but nothing else
> happened after that.
> Seeing as Wine is officially going to be having a 1.0 in the not too
> distant future, this would seem like the ideal time to introduce a
Quite the contrary, this is the worst time to introduce a license change
as it drags developer time into unnecessary license discussion.

> license change (e.g. Samba went to GPLv3 along with a version jump). I
> remember the WineConf 2007 presentation PDF from Alexandre mentioned it
Right, we discussed the issue at the Wine conference and there was 1
vote to move to LGPL v3. The rest didn't care and prefer to stay with
the existing LGPL v2 until there is a compelling reason to move to v3.

> as a "post-1.0" possibility - it would seem to me that 1.0 would in fact
> be the ideal time to make such a change - being able to say "anything
> pre-1.0 is LGPLv2+ and anything 1.0+ is LGPLv3+" is quite nice and is
> easy to understand.
Wine 1.0 should have been the X11 license ... ;)


> LGPLv3 has a lot of benefits over the previous version (see my previous
> email below), some of which are particularly pertinent given Microsoft's
> attitude towards it (e.g. in the Novell agreement that led to a third
> draft of the GPL, Wine would seem to be excluded from the patent
> protection agreement - see
> It would be great to have a decision made on this - personally, I can't
> see any reason why LGPLv3 would be detrimental to WINE (for example, I
> can't see any reason CodeWeavers would dislike any of the new
> provisions, which mostly target troll companies), and numerous reasons
> why it would be a good thing.
> Ian Macfarlane
> ps: Here's the email I sent about this some time back, but with the bits
> about Samba and Solaris snipped out:
> On 7/13/07, *Ian Macfarlane* <ian at
> <mailto:ian at>> wrote:
>     I've been meaning to ask about this since (L)GPL3 was released.
>     The version 3 of the (L)GPL license has numerous benefits:
>     - It's much more legally sound in the rest of the world (IMO one of
>     the most important factors about the new license) - numerous reasons
>     for this e.g. referencing WIPO rather than US laws.
>     - It has an explicit patent agreement (really an extension of the
>     above - (L)GPLv2 has an implicit patent agreement, but this is only
>     valid in the US) - this means that people who contribute to and/or
>     distribute WINE cannot sue WINE (or WINE users) for patent
>     infringement.
>     - It is compatible with the Apache 2.0 license, meaning that there is
>     an even bigger pool of source code to draw from.
>     - It helps ensure that companies cannot prevent people from modifying
>     the source code by providing them explicit legal rights to change the
>     code in these circumstances, and requiring information to allow users
>     to change it.
>     - For LGPL only, It makes 100% sure that GPL+linking exception and
>     LGPL can be combined legally in all jurisdictions by merging them
>     (which is essentially the only real difference, barring slightly
>     different wording in the v2.1 of LGPL vs v2. of GPL)
>     - It prevents patent agreements where only some people are protected.
>     - It provides a mechanism for first-time accidental violations to be
>     'cured' more easily
>     - ... and lots of other minor changes to improve the validity of the
>     legal status of the license.
> <snip>
>     So as you can see, (L)GPL version 3 has a lot of benefits. It also has
>     broad support (excluding Linus of course, who I must point out objects
>     only to a single clause in the license that can be resolved by adding
>     an extra permission, as GPLv3 permits), including strong corporate
>     backing (e.g. IBM, Red Hat, MySQL, Sun, even Novell). As one of the
>     projects that Microsoft would most like to destroy, the added
>     protections in this updated version of the license would seem even
>     more valuable.
>     Kind regards,
>     Ian Macfarlane
>     ps: As a last note to Damjan - all GPL versions have been considered
>     both radical and political when they were released. In retrospect, the
>     protections that they provided have been considered invaluable.

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