[Beowulf] which version of the gpl

Robert G. Brown rgb at phy.duke.edu
Mon Jul 7 04:29:20 PDT 2008

On Mon, 7 Jul 2008, Jon Aquilina wrote:

> im getting ready to start the development of my own clustering distro. im
> going to be registering it on lanuchpad.net to help me keep track of bugs
> and for users to post suggestions.  how do i determine which version of the
> gpl to use?

The only place you have a choice is in software you write.  A
distribution is almost entirely software written by other people, and
you will obviously inherit (and be redistributing under) the license
each item already has, which "should" be clearly included in the source
packages.  If you don't find it, you'll have to try to contact the
authors and get them to license it -- there is stuff out there with no
overt copyright (leaving the ware covered by a passive one -- new work
is copyrighted to the author(s) no matter what, basically) and with no
license at all, or with vague statements about who can use it and when.
You can opt to include software only with v2, v3, BSD-like, or include
shareware or even commercial -- it is your distro, you choose.

If you write a packaging system, an installation system, or any
NEW clusterware then you can choose your license, and GPL v2 or v3 are
fine choices.


Robert G. Brown                            Phone(cell): 1-919-280-8443
Duke University Physics Dept, Box 90305
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Web: http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb
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