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Re: -mwindows copyright? wrote:
> Hi..
>   I'm using the -mno-cygwin and -mwindows options to compile my program.  I'm
> also binding to several other windows libs such as -lwsock32.  I want to
> distribute my programs--as well as source--entirely public domain.  The
> copyright on all of the mingw libraries seems to be public domain, so I'm ok
> there.  But looking at the windows libraries in the source, some of them have
> copyrights such as winsup/sysdef/wsock32.def:
> --snip--
> ;   Exports for WSOCK32 DLL
> ;
> ;   Copyright (C) 1996 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
> ;
> ;   Author:  Scott Christley <>
> ;   Date: 1996
> ;
> ;   This file is part of the Windows32 API Library.
> ;
> ;   This library is free software; you can redistribute it and/or
> ;   modify it under the terms of the GNU Library General Public
> ;   License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either
> ;   version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.
> --snip--
> Does this mean that if I use -mwindows/-lwsock32 I either have to distribute
> my program under GNU, or write my own .def's for windows API? (which I
> imagine would be a minor pain)

If you read the LGPL, it's explained pretty clearly that, so long as
your work doesn't *contain* parts of GPL'd code (or X-licensed code
from someone else), your work isn't a `derivative work', and is in no
way affected by the license of another work (unless, of course, the
other work has a license that specifies `things that make use of this
tool...', which the LGPL doesn't).

If you link statically (the linker copies the libraries into your
executable), then the *executable* is a derivative work, and gets the
GPL. DLL's are, however, by definition, *dynamically* linked (which is
to say, `not statically linked;)').

If you're distributing source code that doesn't include GPL'd code,
then just forget about the licensing issues and get on with it--you're
If you're distributing binaries (of a programme, not a library), then
it shouldn't really matter whether the *binaries* are GPL'd or public
domain--they seem to be pretty much the same thing, in that case,
because there's not a lot that one can typically do to create
derivative works of the binary (unless one is into hacking on machine


. o O ( one could convert the machine code to code for a different
architecture.... Isn't the `machine code' effectively `source code',
then? Oh my..., what thoughts.... )

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