pkg-config 0.24

Vincent Torri vincent.torri at
Mon May 24 23:19:19 PDT 2010

On Tue, May 25, 2010 at 4:56 AM, Peter Johansson <trojkan at> wrote:

> Hi Brian and Dan,
> On 5/24/10 10:47 PM, Dan Nicholson wrote:
>> On Mon, May 24, 2010 at 7:30 PM, Brian Cameron<brian.cameron at>
>>  wrote:
>>> pkg-config team:
>>> I notice that pkg-config 0.24 contains a COPYING file that says the
>>> license is now GPLv3.  Version 0.23 was GPLv2.
>>> Was this change intentional?  It may not have been since I know
>>> that automake will generate a GPLv3 COPYING file by default if one
>>> does not exist in the module already.  So, depending on which
>>> version of automake you use, you can end up with different licenses
>>> if the COPYING file is generated.
>> Tollef can tell you for sure, but it looks like this is the automake
>> included COPYING file in my source tree.
>> $ ls -l COPYING
>> lrwxrwxrwx. 1 dan dan 32 2010-05-24 12:34 COPYING ->
>> /usr/share/automake-1.11/COPYING
> That looks like the COPYING files is not committed to the version control
> system. Automake encourages everyone to do so because of the problem Brian
> already indicated. Automake will create a file COPYING (or a symbolic link)
> if it doesn't already exist. However, which version of COPYING does depend
> on which Automake is used. Form NEWS of Automake 1.11:
>  - `automake --add-missing' will by default install the GPLv3 file as
>    COPYING if it is missing.  It will also warn that the license file
>    should be added to source control.  Note that Automake will never
>    overwrite an existing COPYING file, even when the `--force-missing'
>    option is used.
> The COPYING included in the distributed tarball will consequently depend on
> which version of Automake the releaser uses.
If I'm not mistaken, all the contributors of a project must agree of the
change of the licence, whatever automake does (though i'm not 100% sure
about the specific case GPL2 -> GPL3 change). Indeed,automake may change
COPYING, INSTALL, etc..., it is the one who committed that file who is
responsible of the change of the licence, not automake.

Vincent Torri
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