[osg-users] OSGPL - Legal questions on version and compatibility

Matthias Schütze matthi.schuetze at gmail.com
Mon Mar 4 07:07:53 PST 2019


Currently, I am checking the possibilities to update my company's proprietary application from using OSG 3.0.1 to use a newer version. On GitHub, I could see that with OSG 3.4 the license document changed from OSGPLv0.0 to OSGPLv1.0. There are only minor differences and I understand that the wxWindows exception still allows dynamic and static linking, even in a proprietary application.

Nevertheless, I would like to clarify two questions, I could not answer properly by reading the license texts, various comments on LGPL versions (e.g. by the Free Software Foundation) and several hints on the OSG website.

Question 1: Why is OSGPLv1.0 based on "LGPL-2.1-only" (instead of "LGPL" as OSGPLv0.0)?

I assume that the licensee cannot change the underlying LGPL version from 2.1 to any later version (nor any former). Is this interpretation correct?

Question 2: Could the proprietary application link to both, OSG under OSGPLv1.0 and another shared library under LGPLv3?

I am concerned about combining an LGPL-2.1-only-library and an LGPLv3-library since the resulting work has to use GPLv3 (according to David A. Wheelers "FLOSS License Slide", see online). I assume that this is only the case, when combining the source codes of the libraries. When using the libraries by dynamic linking, I assume that this combination is possible without any license compatibility adaptions, provided that

	 the OSGPLv1.0 license terms (source code distribution, copyright, warranty disclaimer etc.) are satisfied for OSG

	 the LGPLv3 license terms (source code distribution, copyright, warranty disclaimer etc.) are satisfied for the other shared library

	 the proprietary application can have its own license terms

Could anybody please confirm or correct my understanding of these relations? Are there any other specifics for such a combination?

Every clarification or suggestion for further reading would be highly appreciated.

Thank you!

Kind regards,

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