TDB license (was: Re: tdb performance)

Jeremy Allison jra at
Wed Jan 23 13:20:02 GMT 2002

On Wed, Jan 23, 2002 at 04:05:07PM -0500, David Chappell wrote:

> TDB looks very nice and is small while Sleepycat's and SQ Lite look like
> overkill, but there is one problem that has so far made me hesitate to
> use it.  My project (the PPR print spooler) is distributed under the BSD
> license.  If I were to include TDB then, as I understand it, my whole
> project would automatically come under the GPL.  Now I have nothing
> against the GPL, but I have reasons for wanting to keep this particular
> project BSD.
> So I think it is a good thing that Samba as a whole is under the GPL,
> but I also think it would be nice if TDB were licensed under the LGPL. 
> That way, people from other projects who used TDB would still have to
> contribute their fixes and improvements but they could still make their
> own decisions about how to license their projects.
> I understand that Richard Stallman disagrees with this reasoning,
> basically because he sees GPL licensed libraries as an incentive to
> choose the GPL for new projects.

So do we. This is why tdb is GPL. We're not going to re-license tdb
under the LGPL.

However, we are thinking about allowing an "Open Source" exception
that allows the use of tdb in Open Source projects only without
forcing the rest of the project to be GPL also.

We don't want tdb to be used in proprietary projects, so no LGPL.

This has come up before (and no doubt will do so again) so I
thought I'd clarify our position on it.


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