[gmx-developers] Mixed license post 5.0

Roland Schulz roland at utk.edu
Fri Feb 7 10:16:52 CET 2014

On Thu, Feb 6, 2014 at 5:45 PM, Erik Lindahl <erik.lindahl at scilifelab.se>

> if you want to rely on OpenBabel, there is no legal possibility whatsoever
> to distribute a binary using both OpenBabel (GLPv2 only) in combination
> with GSL (GPLv3 or later).
As the GPL FAQ admits (
http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.html#MereAggregation) this is an open
question which might easily dependent on the jurisdiction. It might be that
shared linking is fine and isn't considered a derived work. But of course
not sure whether it is legal is for practical purposes not more useful than
known to be illegal ;-). What seems clear is that if OpenBabel isn't used
as a library but instead as external commands which are called and
communicated  to by using e.g. pipes than it is no problem.

But, why would it be important to be able to distribute those binaries if
we have no plans to distributing binaries (especially with optional
features enabled)?

On 06 Feb 2014, at 23:38, Erik Lindahl <erik.lindahl at scilifelab.se> wrote:
> However, personally I will vote against accepting patches into the main
> Gromacs codebase that rely on large external libraries that are are not
> compatlble with LGPLv2 since that will just cause further fractioning and
> large parts of the source code that are not tested by default. Such things
> are better distributed as separate programs, IMHO.
> Not sure why testing would be affected by the license. We currently also
test with FFTW.

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