Version 1 (modified by khali, 5 years ago)

Explain the libsensors license issue

Changing the libsensors License

When lm-sensors 2 was written, all the code was placed under the GPL license (version 2), including the library, libsensors. Over time, a number of developers complained to us that this made it impossible for them to link their application to libsensors due to license incompatibilities. Indeed, a library released under the GPL can only be used by code itself released under the GPL. This excludes proprietary tools but also tools released under BSD-style licenses and libraries released under the LGPL, for example. Clearly, libsensors should have been released under the LGPL license originally. It is believed that the choice of the GPL wasn't intentional and merely an overlook.

For a long time we have been ignoring the issue, because it isn't easy to solve. Basically we need to get the approval of all copyright holders and preferably all other significant contributors if we want to be able to change the license. That being said, the problem is real, so it would be really, really great if we could change the license of libsensors someday. So we are starting a 1-year campaign to collect as many approvals as possible from all past contributors to libsensors. On July 1st, 2010, if we managed to get the approval of all copyright holders and no disapproval from any past contributor to libsensors, next releases of libsensors will be placed under the LGPL license (version 2.1).

Position of the Copyright Holders

  • Frodo Looijaard didn't express his opinion yet
  • Jean Delvare agrees
  • Adrian Baugh didn't express his opinion yet
  • Mark M. Hoffman didn't express his opinion yet

Position of the Contributors

  • Andre Prendel
  • Darrick J. Wong
  • Hans de Goede
  • Kyösti Mälkki
  • Mark D. Studebaker
  • Merlin Hughes
  • Philip Edelbrock
  • Rudolf Marek
  • Bob Schlaermann
  • abz (Who is he/she?)
  • jrm (Who is he/she?)
  • knobi (Who is he/she?)

If you did contribute to libsensors and are not listed there, please contact us to be added, and let us know your position about the proposed license change.