Xorg license policy

Jeremy C. Reed reed at reedmedia.net
Fri Aug 29 06:40:23 PDT 2008

Replying to a couple mails here ...

On Fri, 29 Aug 2008, dan wrote:

> This may be the case. Certainly I'm familiar with the argument anyway.
> I'm not in a position to validate it or not, but on the face of it, I 
> concede that BSD licensing would seem to be more attractive than GPL, 
> at least in the short term. I'm not sure about the long-term viability
> vs GPL.

I read that last sentence to say that GPL will win because of viral nature 
over time will touch a lot of code. (GPL'd code without corresponding 
license file is already in X.org for some Linux specific code. Maybe it 
could or has been reused unknowninly or purposely elsewhere.)

On Fri, 29 Aug 2008, David Gerard wrote:

> The main thing helping Xorg is not the license. It's that it has an
> active developer community. The license is pretty much secondary to
> that. FreeBSD and OpenBSD are hardly in danger of dying because of
> their wide-open license - they have active developer communities.
> (NetBSD I read the reports of that it was less so, but that's not
> because of the license.)

Actually NetBSD continues to gain more active developers than it loses. 
(This includes several developers from companies that use NetBSD in their 
commercial products.)

And its code continues to have great growth and improvement.

To keep my email Xorg related:

NetBSD will be shipping Xorg built via its cross-build source tree.
Hopefully all the NetBSD-specific XFree86 code will be converted over and 
shared upstream.

(NetBSD also ships X.org packages via its pkgsrc collection.)

I agree that an active community is important. I don't see how X.org would 
suddenly receive more developers by switching licenses.

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