RTEMS Licensing

Joel Sherrill joel.sherrill at OARcorp.com
Sun Sep 9 00:14:01 UTC 2001

Mark Johannes wrote:
> Hello,
> The LGPL is our (OAR) opinion does not allow for the use of
> distributed source code that is built into libraries (static or
> dynamic for that matter) and stil lmaintain the end user as
> proprietary.  In order to provide the clearest license, we modified
> the GPL to allow those that link/bind/build with the RTEMS environment
> to utilize RTEMS without consequence to othe code that is developed by
> that entity.

To provide another detail... the original LGPL compelled one to
provide their proprietary code in a form that could be relinked
with newly compiled versions of the LGPL'ed code.  This is really
pretty harsh when using LGPL code in an embedded application.

My vision was of someone going to the parts department of their
local car dealer and asking for the relink kit for their breaks. 
Insert your worst safety critcal application (medical, 
avionics, etc, etc) for the ABS brakes in the example and 
I don't think anyone would use an LGPL'ed RTOS under those

Our overriding goal was to maintain RTEMS as free software while
clearly not pushing weird restrictions on the user of RTEMS.  

> If there are any problems specifically with the license, please
> contact us and we can formulate a solution if at all possible.
> Regards,
> Mark Johannes
> OAR Corporation
> Camilo Alejandro Arboleda wrote:
> > Hi, Excuse me if it is a FAQ but, why RTEMS has a modified version
> > of GNU GPL, and do not use LGPL? If I understand, the modification
> > allows using RTEMS under propietary systems, but does not allow
> > making RTEMS itself propietary. Am I right? If so, LGPL covers this
> > situation pretty much better than GPL. Thanks, Camilo Alejandro
> > Arboleda

Joel Sherrill, Ph.D.             Director of Research & Development
joel at OARcorp.com                 On-Line Applications Research
Ask me about RTEMS: a free RTOS  Huntsville AL 35805
   Support Available             (256) 722-9985

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