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Why IBM Now Views LLVM As Being Critical Software

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  • Why IBM Now Views LLVM As Being Critical Software

    Phoronix: Why IBM Now Views LLVM As Being Critical Software

    It wasn't until the middle of 2012 that IBM viewed LLVM as being "critical" to support but since then they have decided to fully support LLVM across all IBM server platforms. Last week in Paris at the European LLVM Meeting, one of their developers talked about the tipping point in supporting LLVM on IBM hardware and their current development status...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=MTM2NjU

  • #2
    Licensing question

    Can you fork off LLVM under GPL2 or GPL3?

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    • #3
      Originally posted by dimko View Post
      Can you fork off LLVM under GPL2 or GPL3?
      Sure, provided that you leave the copyright notices intact and a reference to the original license terms for the code that was originally released under it.

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      • #4
        Have to disagree with the "Sure" part of your answer because I *think* the original question was whether you can relicense existing LLVM code. I think I agree with everything else you said though -- you can't relicense any of the current code, but you can mix GPL code into a copy of the current code. The existing code would maintain its (mostly UIUC) license while the new bits would be GPL and anyone distributing a binary built off the mixed code would need to offer/provide source for the entire tree.

        This would not be allowed in the main project tree, of course.
        Last edited by bridgman; 05-07-2013, 12:02 PM.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by dimko View Post
          Can you fork off LLVM under GPL2 or GPL3?
          I see no reason why anyone would want to do that.

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          • #6
            Big companies

            Originally posted by tehehe View Post
            I see no reason why anyone would want to do that.
            Tend not to care about OS. Look at Oracle/MySQL situation and you will understand what I am talking about.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by bridgman View Post
              Have to disagree with the "Sure" part of your answer because I *think* the original question was whether you can relicense existing LLVM code.
              "Fork" doesn't imply relicensing all previous code to me. Also, the LLVM license explicitly allows "sublicensing", whatever that means.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by dimko View Post
                Tend not to care about OS. Look at Oracle/MySQL situation and you will understand what I am talking about.
                Bad example.

                It would not have made a difference in that case if it had been BSD licensed since Oracle owned the full copyright (in the old days, MySQL AB had two releases: a paid-for permissive one and a free GPL:ed). If Oracle wanted to they could have closed up the subsequent releases of MySQL without releasing the code (as a copyright holder they can change the terms). What they can NOT do is to change the terms retroactively of already released code, which is exactly the same with permissively licensed code (the code already released will always be open and free but someone can develop it further and choose not to release that code).

                This is why the "Linux way" (many copyright holders) of GPL is better than the "FSF way" (one copyright holder) of copyleft : signing over copyright to a single entity gives them a lot of power. There are ofcourse many side-effects that may be negative. Updating the "GPL2 only" terms in the kernel would now be near-impossible, so issues (like Apache- and CCDL- incompatibility bugs in GPL2) are either worked around or dealt with in other ways.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dimko View Post
                  Can you fork off LLVM under GPL2 or GPL3?
                  Why would you even want to do this? GPL, especially in the 3 version is very restrictive and frankly reduces your freedom significantly. There are better ways to do open source these days.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by dimko View Post
                    Tend not to care about OS. Look at Oracle/MySQL situation and you will understand what I am talking about.
                    Which means what? Oracle bought a product and thus has the right to license the code they create for it anyway they want too. So no we don't understand what you are talking about.

                    These cryptic posts often highlight that the poster simply doesn't understand the realities of the situation being discussed. LLVM/CLANG are licensed under very good terms that are less of an issue when it comes to software freedom than the GPL. GPL is in many ways the worst of the lot when it comes to open source as you as an author give up way too much of your rights.

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