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I am curious as to the license used for the C++ standard library license in Linux/GCC. Would I be required to make programs of mine open source that use the ...
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  1. #1
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    Standard C++ Library License


    I am curious as to the license used for the C++ standard library license in Linux/GCC. Would I be required to make programs of mine open source that use the C++ standard library that is available for Linux or would I be allowed to close the source of my programs if I choose to? Thanks.

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    Here is an extract from the libstdc++5 copyright notice:

    The libstdc++-v3 library is licensed under the terms of the GNU General
    Public License, with this special exception:

    As a special exception, you may use this file as part of a free software
    library without restriction. Specifically, if other files instantiate
    templates or use macros or inline functions from this file, or you compile
    this file and link it with other files to produce an executable, this
    file does not by itself cause the resulting executable to be covered by
    the GNU General Public License. This exception does not however
    invalidate any other reasons why the executable file might be covered by
    the GNU General Public License.
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    Quote Originally Posted by burnit
    Here is an extract from the libstdc++5 copyright notice:

    The libstdc++-v3 library is licensed under the terms of the GNU General
    Public License, with this special exception:

    As a special exception, you may use this file as part of a free software
    library without restriction. Specifically, if other files instantiate
    templates or use macros or inline functions from this file, or you compile
    this file and link it with other files to produce an executable, this
    file does not by itself cause the resulting executable to be covered by
    the GNU General Public License. This exception does not however
    invalidate any other reasons why the executable file might be covered by
    the GNU General Public License.
    I don't mean to be a bother, but that means that I can use that standard library for closed-source software, right?

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    GPL and LGPL

    When a library is licenced with GPL, your program linked with these libraries MUST licences under GPL. Instead, when a library is licensed with LGPL, your program can have closed sources.

    Because the C++ standard library is under GPL (wich seems to me rather strange, it's reasonably a LGPL...), your program should be licenced under LGPL. But the exception included in the licence, wich admin to link the library with any program not licenced under GPL, talk about templates, macros and inline functions...

    This is not totally clear to me... I suggest that your program should be licenced under GPL...

    Maybe you can contact FSF (Free Software Fundation) for a sure answer.
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    Perhaps I should. I want to be sure. Thanks for your help.

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    i cannot believe that by choosing to write a program in standard c++ makes it automatically open source and that it MUST be licenced under the GPL. are we saying that there are no commercial products out there written in standard c++?
    this would mean you couldn't sell anyting written in c, perl, python ...

    while i would also suggest you only produce open source code, if you wnat it closed, thats your buissness.

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    Do you agree?

    Check this link...

    http://www.gnu.org/licenses/why-not-lgpl.html

    The crucial point is that proprietary programs can link with LGPL libraries and can't with GPL'ed libraries.

    For example GNU C library is licenced as LGPL, so many proprietary programs can use it.

    If anyone needs to program in C++ on GNU/Linus OSes, maybe can use any proprietary C++ libraries...

    ... fortunately I don't program in C++
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    Quote Originally Posted by sirclif
    i cannot believe that by choosing to write a program in standard c++ makes it automatically open source and that it MUST be licenced under the GPL. are we saying that there are no commercial products out there written in standard c++?
    this would mean you couldn't sell anyting written in c, perl, python ...

    while i would also suggest you only produce open source code, if you wnat it closed, thats your buissness.
    Is that suppost to make sense?

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    RE-reading...

    Quote Originally Posted by sirclif
    i cannot believe that by choosing to write a program in standard c++ makes it automatically open source and that it MUST be licenced under the GPL. are we saying that there are no commercial products out there written in standard c++?
    this would mean you couldn't sell anyting written in c, perl, python ...
    Re-reding this post I've noticed you are confused about Free Software...

    Punctuation: pratically you don't sell software. In the Open Source vision software has no price. It's your service aroud software that you sell... pratically it's the same thing, but you release proprietary rights to the final user, giving him the freedom to use his/your product.
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    Er, so now I'm confused. By linking with gcc or g++'s standard library, do you or do you not retain the ability to keep your program non-GPL?
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