Licenses / Licences

These are the licenses I use for my freeware releases. (Should I use the US or UK spelling of "licen[cs]e"? You know what I mean, anyway.)

If you are from the Windows world and you have been listening to Microsoft FUD about evil GNU "viral" licensing, please calm down and take the time to read at least the following two paragraphs, and then maybe the introductory plain-English part of the two licenses. Microsoft have been twisting the truth and misinforming you ... as usual.

The GPL allows you (a coder) to safely share your code freely with a whole community of other people who are also sharing their code. So GPL'd code is no use to you if you are planning to make and distribute a closed-source app. However, the GPL is not really 'viral' as MicroSoft and friends suggest. In fact there is a long list of compatible licenses that may be used alongside the GPL within an app. So it is not that restrictive -- so long as you're not planning on taking code without giving back. Using the GPL basically means, "I'll share my code with you so long as you return the favour".

The LGPL is similar to the GPL, except that it was designed for libraries that might be linked with closed-source applications. It does not require that the app source code is made open-source. However, if you use LGPL'd code in your app, and you make modifications to the LGPL'd code, you do need to make those changes available when you distribute the executables. In other words, with the LGPL, the open-source parts stay open, and the closed-source parts can stay closed. This license is well-tested in use alongside commercial software -- every single commercial application or game running on Linux is linked with LGPL'd code.

Here are the two licenses in full legal detail:

See also the Free Software Foundation pages for more information on these licenses.

UAZU-Up- These pages and files, including applets and artwork, are Copyright (c) 1997-2016 Jim Peters unless otherwise stated. Please contact me if you'd like to use anything not explicitly released, or if you have something interesting to discuss.