JUN
27
2001

Trolltech: No-Charge License for Qt/Windows

Trolltech, creators of the excellent cross-platform GUI library Qt on which KDE is based, announced today a new license for Qt/Windows. Called the Qt Non Commercial license version 1.0, it permits developers of non-commerical software to develop with and distribute the Windows version of Qt for free. The Qt Non Commercial Edition for Microsoft Windows is a binary-only distribution and requires Microsoft Visual Studio version 6 (download, FAQ).
Excellent news, but when will we see kdelibs and Konqueror for Windows?

Comments

>Excellent news, but when will we see kdelibs and Konqueror for Windows?

Never I hope...


By Anonymous Coward at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> Never I hope...

You underestimate the power of buzzwords like "multi-platform". We should not port all of KDE to Windows, that would be stupid. Put porting one or two of the killer applications could create a lot of positive marketing hype.

User: "Wow, this is a cool browser, I like it"
Us: "Like it? We've got a whole desktop just like it! For free!"

Furthermore it would allow more web developers to test their sites with Konqueror/khtml.


By Rob Kaper at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

That's a briliant stradegy! :) Go for it!


By dc at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

User: "Wow, this is a cool browser, I like it"

Hehe, Sure you can have a nice browser on Windows by 'porting' konqueror. But the strenghts of konqueror lies in the (o.a.) application-embedding (aka kparts). I think you would not do it justice, on Windows.


By Thomas Zander at Sat, 2001/06/30 - 5:00am

One of the more important implications is that this move could bring many Windows developers to KDE/Qt/Linux via Qt/Windows. Let's hope that a lot of Windows developers decide to jump on this deal.


By KDE User at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

This is purely wishful thinking. I'd love to believe it were true.


By dingodonkey at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> This is purely wishful thinking. I'd love to believe it were true.

I don't think so. Win32 is has a terrible API; the only way people get anything done is by using a visual editor like Visual C++ or adopting another API like Borland C++ Builder which uses VCL. We already have Kylix from Borland which is practically C++ Builder; it uses QT. It's not a far walk to Kylix/Win or C++ Builder/QT.


By Andrew at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

> Win32 is has a terrible API; the only way people get anything done is by using a visual editor like Visual C++ or adopting another API

I disagree. All of us Cygwin and Cygwin/XFree86 developers use emacs or vim and we access the Win32 API directly. Heck, I only started seriously using Cygwin and the Win32 API nine months ago; three months ago I finished rewriting Cygwin/XFree86, so Win32 can't be that hard/bad :)

Harold


By Harold Hunt at Tue, 2001/07/03 - 5:00am

I see Windows 2000 (and Windows NT) as no more than a UNIX kernel derivate with a "Windows look" (the GUI). I think Windows NT/2000 are good operating systems. However, there are dark clouds ahead.... The coming Windows XP - with registrations by Web, seems to me as a prerequisite to George Orwells future nightmare "1984". Big Brother Bill Gates is watching you!

If Qt/Windows can contribute to development of applications for Windows NT/2000, then the hegemony of Microsoft can be broken. And if MS should be very nasty guys (making the applications incompatible with future Windows incarnations, as they did with Watcom C/C++), people do have an alternative in KDE/Qt/Linux.


By Magne Aga at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

Okay, I'm excited. Muhammed and mountains spring to mind :-)

Just wondering if there would be any problems linking GPLed code like KDE against it though. Shouldn't think so as it's no different to linking against an LGPL library where you don't have to distribute the library source code. IANAL though, so I'll leave this discussion to those who know (and I'm sure this is gonna get discussed A LOT!!) Be nice to have an "official" view on this asap to prevent too much speculation.

For those who are thinking "yeah, but the underlying OS wouldn't be Open Source", just think of it as a transitionary step. Once they're all running KDE under windows, it'll be really easy to "port" the users over to Linux etc.

Things are starting to get more and more fun :-)


By sean at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

Yes, that is true. When you want to win the desktop battle you have to go into the enemies country and occupy it.


By thomas at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

you said:
>>Just wondering if there would be any problems
>>linking GPLed code like KDE against it though.
>>Shouldn't think so as it's no different to
>>linking against an LGPL library where you
>>don't have to distribute the library source
>>code.
Well IANAL either of course but I

1) don't think there would be probs with kdelibs, provided it's all LGPL

2) konqueror is GPL and that *might* be a problem .. errr.. depending on where you stood in that whole dynamic-linking-against-non-gpl-qt flamefest. (my personal opinion on that hot potato being that the GPL is not remotely explicit enough about it and that it will take a court battle to figure if it would even be enforcable. I wish people would just use a more explicit license.)

The distinction you do fail to make above is not being *required* to distribute library source vs. not being *able* to (distribute and make various mods to it).

Of course none of this is to stop the konqueror guys from putting some exception clause in their license "just in case" or from saying "whaddaya mean I can't do that? watch *this*"

In any event, nice move from the trolls (at troll tech :)


By blandry at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> 1) don't think there would be probs with kdelibs, provided it's all LGPL

It's not all GPL, but what isn't is X, BSD or Artistic licensed. In any case
none of kdelibs should have a problem with the Qt license.

> 2) konqueror is GPL and that *might* be a problem .. errr.. depending on
>where you stood in that whole dynamic-linking-against-non-gpl-qt flamefest.

Not as big a problem as you might think at first. If Qt and kdelibs are distributed on
CD, then the Konqueror part would have to be downloaded separately (GPL only
prevents you from distributing GPL apps with non-GPL apps, it does not prevent
people from using them together). So if someone made a build of Konqueror
with the CygWin glibc libraries, well it wouldn't be the smallest download but
definitely possible enough that many Windows users would try it.


By Dre at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> So if someone made a build of Konqueror with
> the CygWin glibc libraries, well it wouldn't
> be the smallest download but definitely
> possible enough that many Windows users would
> try it.

Actually it would be the smallest download. Konqueror is..

cap@kira:~$ ls -sh /usr/local/kde2/bin/konqueror

16k /usr/local/kde2/bin/konqueror*

Of course you need to add libkonq to that..

736k /usr/local/kde2/lib/konqueror.so*
660k /usr/local/kde2/lib/libkonq.so.3.0.0*

Well, that's still a small download considering I did not even strip and gzip anything here.

Everything else what Konqueror uses are kdelibs (khtml, kio, kparts) and some kioslaves, nspluginviwer and kcookiejar, but all in all I'm sure it can be crammed in a pretty small download.


By Rob Kaper at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> 16k /usr/local/kde2/bin/konqueror*
> 736k /usr/local/kde2/lib/konqueror.so*
> 660k /usr/local/kde2/lib/libkonq.so.3.0.0*

Umm.. ldd'ing my konqueror binary gives me a lot more than two libraries...

libkparts libkfile libksycoca libkio libkdeui libkdesu libkdecore libkdefakes

Now for a Win32 user to want it, they'd need the graphics libraries (libjpeg, libpng, etc.) unless QT provides wrappers for these and other graphics formats.

It'll be small, sure, but unless I'm missing something, it won't be that small.


By Andrew at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

What someone _really_ needs to do is recompile Konqueror/Embedded.

Konq/Embedded is a lot smaller than the full Konq, I think. We could finally see a head-to-head competition between IE and KHTML!


By not me at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

> Umm.. ldd'ing my konqueror binary gives me a
> lot more than two libraries...

Yah, I made a mistake in thinking the ported kdelibs would already be on the computer. If so, Konqueror would be small - if not, that should increase the size a bit... ;-)


By Rob Kaper at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

You are overlooking a number of things.

The QT/Windows non-free license does not allow commercial usage of software using it. You can't port KWord to Windows and let your Windows colleagues at work use it. Period. According to QT at least.

KDE is AFAIK mostly GPL, so it allows commercial usage.

The fact that FAQ says you can license your code under BSD or Artistic licences does not mean you can simply avoid other restrictions for set by Trolls for QT/non-free.

You can develop QT/Windows non-free apps only with Microsoft Visual Studio, which brings in it's own set of licensing details.

So my idea of developing apps at linux and simply cross compiling it for win32 still isn't possible.

So why not port GPL QT to Win32? I know it probably isn't the easiest thing to do, but we have gtk-win32 and great number of other free windows code lying arround. We also have very capable cross compilers and windows implementations (WINE) to allow us to test our win32 QT code on Linux. Did anybody do the initial research on making the port? Please contact me if you did. I would like to port it, but I'm still not done evaluating various other options. Like polishing gtk-win32, or maybe even trying to make a C++ portable LGPL widget set.

What is Trolltech position on this?
Since they licensed QT under the GPL, they obviously have nothing against it, but probably think that there is no interest among Free software developers to port QT to Windows.

But I think that Free software developers have a lot to gain and nothing too loose if they port apps to Windows. That way, when most KOffice apps are polished, and when we incrementaly remove the need for non-free Windows apps, we can easily switch to totally Free system.


By Vedran Rodic at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> You can't port KWord to Windows and let your
> Windows colleagues at work use it

Yes, you can. But you mustn't allow the users to write scripts in KWord (is that possible, i don't know kword). I think disabling scripting support for kword in these cases would be enough.

I refer to Right No. 3 of the license

"You may use the original versions of the Software to compile, link and run application programs legally developed by you or by others. However, if an application program gives you access to functionality of the Software for development of application programs, reusable components or other software components (e.g. an application that is a scripting wrapper), usage of the application program is considered to be usage of the Software and is thus bound by this license. "


By Markus Pietrek at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

No. It only states that it's viral in it's own non-free way.

So, GPL-ed KDevelop (and KWord!) suddenly becomes licensed under a more restrictive license, which is incompatibile with GPL.

In No 4. you would believe that this is similiar with GPL, except that it can't be used for producing apps for "commercial setting", IE you can't make money from it.

This contradicts with all real values of the GPL license, since a lot of Free software developers are making money by making Free software. Why wouldn't they? They have to eat. I have to eat too, by making Free software that both Windows and Linux users can use. It's my idea that Linux users should be able to use it. What's wrong with that? I happen to like QT and KDE for purely techincal reasons and I would really hate to be forced to use another toolkit. Free Software is good. I hope we know that. So why Trolltech doesn't? Because their entire business is based on it! So what?? So create a different business, there are plenty of choices now.

This Free vs. Non-free software is getting really boring and irritating in the same time. Lets just create Free software and be happy with it!

C'mon Trolls. Be friends with everybody:)


By Vedran Rodic at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> In No 4. you would believe that this is
> similiar with GPL, except that it can't be
> used for producing apps for "commercial
> setting", IE you can't make money from it.

No.4 states that " in a non-commercial setting, to develop application programs, reusable components and other software items". I don't count the letters the secretary is writing as software items. Therefore, the secretary in a company is allowed to use KWord, but not to write any scripts.

Bye


By Markus Pietrek at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

I'm sorry. I wasn't talking about KWord only.

But the license is not GPL compatibile, and KWord is GPL licensed software. Its not BSD or Artistic. KWord would have to change it's license to become compatibile with QT/non-free. I don't want that to happen. Do you?


By Vedran at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

It's not fine that a GPL application had to change it's license. But, all current users would not be affected by it (they are working on unix), and some window users would benefit from it, too (they are currently not using kword)

You are right in saying that's not the best we could wish us, but it is a step in the correct direction.

Bye,
Markus


By Markus Pietrek at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

hi


By joe at Thu, 2004/04/08 - 5:00am

> The QT/Windows non-free license does not allow
> commercial usage of software using it. You can't
> port KWord to Windows and let your Windows
> colleagues at work use it. Period.
> According to QT at least.

Nonsense. The license nowhere states anything
like this.

You must not _develop_ programs with Qt in
commercial settings. All the license states
about _running_ programs is that you most
certainly are granted the right to run programs
legally developed by others.

How can this be missunderstood? Have you actually
read further than the caption "Qt Non Commercial"?

Regarding scripting: It depends on the power
of KWord's scripting engine, but I doubt that
'writing scripts for kword' is the same as
'developing applications with Qt'. So no, there
is no need to turn the scriptability off.

Regarding the GNU GPL: We clearly state on the
webpages and the README that the GNU GPL is not
compatible with the Qt Non Commercial License for
Microsoft Windows.


By Matthias Ettrich at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

Okay, maybe I said the quoted text under a biased GPL view. But it is the same.

Users of software have the right to develop the software they are using. Software authors have the right to make their software stay free. GPL is one license that provides that protection. I like that about it.

Your license is clear, but you still can't port KWord to QT/non-free because it's GPLed.

Why wouldn't my boss pay me to port KWord to Windows? Thankfully, QT is GPLed, so nobody can prevent other developers from porting it to windows. I just think its very redundant to do it, since QT already did it.

Trolltech is contradicting themselves. They release the same toolkit in both GPL license and license that is not GPL compatibile. How would you feel like if Linus Torvalds would say: Okay, the kernel is under a dual license, I can make proprietary changes to it, but you can't, because you didn't pay me for the license. The license is 1M $. Obviously the success of Linux would never happen.


By Vedran Rodic at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

A Question!

If I as a developer in a "commercial setting" make a patch that fixes a bug in QT/GPL, my patch obviously falls under the GPL. Now, GPL does not allow the code under it to be made proprietary. What happens if I somebody from trolltech includes the fix in their tree?

Does it automatically go in QT/Windows tree? If yes, it can't. And if you say that you are "rewriting" every fix that comes from a KDE developer separately for QT/non-free, please don't, it just sounds funny.

Maybe you are paranoid and you are keeping the bugs in QT/non-free?


By Vedran Rodic at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

As a commercial entity, we have to take licensing and copyright issues very seriously. Send us a patch > 15 lines and you'll find out.


By Matthias Ettrich at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> Users of software have the right to develop the
> software they are using.

Wrong. Users of Free software have this right. Users of commercial software have whatever right the copyright holder grants them in the end user licensing agreement.

FYI: commercial users of our software get the entire source code and the right to do modifications for the sake of their products.

> Your license is clear, but you still can't port
> KWord to QT/non-free because it's GPLed.

Yes. Where did you get the impression from that this is what we want to achieve with the Qt Non Commercial Edition? http://www.trolltech.com/products/download/freelicense/noncommercial-dl.... clearly talks about the incompatiblilty with the GPL.

> Trolltech is contradicting themselves. They
> release the same toolkit in both GPL license and
> license that is not GPL compatibile.

Qt/X11 and Qt/Windows are not the same product.

Show me a company of our size that contributed more GPL'd code to Linux and is still healthy in business and growing. Then release at least as much professional code under the GNU GPL as we did and stay in business. Then come back to me and critize me.

No need to answer, for me this discussion is closed.


By Matthias Ettrich at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

I know, I know and I know and I'm sorry.

I guess I just wanted to try changing your mind. I will respect your wishes of not wanting QT for Win32 to be Free (this sentence is probably not needed, since I still haven't proven that I can do that).

I'm not some envious bastard wanting to ruin a solid business of decent company just because I can. I feel that QT was kind of forced into GPL and I don't like that fact.

The only thing I wanted to achieve here is being able to finally say:

Okay I can use this great cross platform toolkit, I can make win32 apps on my linux box and test them with Wine, I don't have to cope with quirky licences anymore, I'm happy with GPL, and I have a complete control of my Free system. It is now a standard GUI toolkit. Everywhere. Lets move on.

And I really want to be able to witness that a another bar has been raised (as linas, the author of gnucash has nicely put it in http://www.linas.org/theory/freetrade.html).

Anyway, I found a couple of interesting articles on cross platform GUI development at http://www.t4p.com/xplat.htm
and http://www2.linuxjournal.com/lj-issues/issue49/2723.html

Friendly, Vedran


By Vedran at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> > Your license is clear, but you still can't port
> > KWord to QT/non-free because it's GPLed.
>
> Yes. Where did you get the impression from that this is what we want to
> achieve with the Qt Non Commercial Edition?
> http://www.trolltech.com/products/download/freelicense/noncommercial-dl....
> clearly talks about the incompatiblilty with the GPL.

Just to clarify a few things. Nothing prevents anyone from *porting* KWord
to Qt Non-commercial and, under the proper circumstances, distributing this KWord in binary form.

If you look at Section 2 of the GPL, it says you are free to modify the
GPL'd work (KWord) in any way you wish; this would include modifying KWord
(or Konqueror) to work with Qt Non-commercial. However, Section 2(b) goes on to say that if you then go
ahead and *distribute* the modified work, you have to include the whole
package under a GPL-compatible license (which Qt Non-commercial is not).
So the premise has to be that you distribute Qt Non-commerical (together
with kdelibs and any other Qt Non-commerical-compatible-licensed software) separately
from KWord/Konqueror/GPL-app.

Some would argue that even if you distribute it separately the Qt
Non-commerical is still part of the "whole" and thus must be GPL-
compatible, as they were designed to "link together" (this argument came up in the old days before Qt was GPL'd). However, Section 2 of the GPL also has an exception for this:

If identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the
Program, and can be reasonably considered independent and
separate works in themselves, then this License, and its terms,
do not apply to those sections when you distribute them as
separate works.

In my view Qt Non-commerical could be considered to satisfy the premise of that clause,
so you can distribute KWord designed to link to Qt Non-commercial as long
as the user gets the kdelibs separately (i.e., not from you).

Remember the GPL was written so that people could use GPL'd programs
on proprietary Unixes (particulary proprietary libc's). However, this
exception was not meant to permit the proprietary Unix vendors to
distribute these GPL'd programs as well; hence the requirement to
distribute the GPL and non-compatible works "as separate works".

Thus, if someone distributes Qt Non-commercial and kdelibs on CD to users (or makes it available for download), and somebody else compiles and distributes KWord/Konqueror/etc. separately to work on this system, then I don't see a GPL violation (though of course a persuasive argument could change my mind).


By Dre at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

God I hate not having an html option. So I'm just going to put asterisks around everything you said.

***Section 2 of the GPL also has an exception for this:

If identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the Program, and can be reasonably considered independent and separate works in themselves, then this License, and its terms, do not apply to those sections when you distribute them as separate works.***

No it does not. I just checked the GPL license in the file COPYING for the linux kernel and it's not there. It bears a startling resemblance to an LGPL passage, but s/Program/Library. Although I'm sure you didn't mean it, this is a serious piece of misinformation and at least one other person in this topic is citing it.

***Remember the GPL was written so that people could use GPL'd programs on proprietary Unixes (particulary proprietary libc's).***

True dat! .. falling under the nebulous "major components" exception (the part that begins "as a special exception, ..."), which libc almost certainly falls under and many would argue qt/win does not. Another place the GPL ought to be more explicit. The "and so on" bit is too vague. Stallman used it to "attack" (and I use that term loosely) pre-GPL qt/x11 even tho it was shipped by default in several linux distributions and could therefore be considered (by me) to be a major component. Nobody would argue that NT's gui libraries weren't a major component. Almost a chicken-egg problem there. Yes, I know MS doesn't ship qt/win with their OS (wouldn't that be interesting tho :) .. damn I'm sorry I guess we've all been down this road before.

***However, this exception was not meant to permit the proprietary Unix vendors to distribute these GPL'd programs as well;***

Tell that to (old-school) NeXT. Alternatively, http://www.sun.com/gnome

Man it's late.


By blandry at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

> > Section 2 of the GPL also has an exception for this:

> > If identifiable sections of that work are not derived from the
> > Program, and can be reasonably considered independent and separate
> > works in themselves, then this License, and its terms, do not
> > apply to those sections when you distribute them as separate works.
>
> No it does not. I just checked the GPL license in the file COPYING
> for the linux kernel and it's not there.

[ ... ]

Try http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/gpl.html.

> > Remember the GPL was written so that people could use GPL'd programs on
> > proprietary Unixes (particulary proprietary libc's).
>
> True dat! .. falling under the nebulous "major components" exception
> (the part that begins "as a special exception, ..."), which libc almost
> certainly falls under and many would argue qt/win does not. Another
> place the GPL ought to be more explicit. The "and so on" bit is too
> vague. Stallman used it to "attack" (and I use that term loosely) pre-GPL
> qt/x11 even tho it was shipped by default in several linux distributions
> and could therefore be considered (by me) to be a major component.

Well that is the old argument again and you are right that it is tougher
in this case (since you don't even have the source code to Qt Noncommercial
to distribute and it would be less of a system component for the reasons you
state). Of course I wouldn't suggest that KDE does this -- Heaven forbid! -- but it's a gray
area so someone, perhaps an individual, could do it (assuming the app's
developers don't object). Anyway, if you use MS Visual Studio I think
everyone would agree the libc/libstdc++ are system components, so the only
issue would be Qt Noncommerical itself. And Qt Noncommerical is not so
unlike Motif in terms of how convincingly you can say it is a system
component, and in terms of it not being not distributed by the vendor or
available in source code . . . and certainly there were a good number of
GPL Motif apps.


By Dre at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

>>>Try http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/gpl.html.
gah! doh.. I misread.. my deepest apologies. I guess it really *was* late.

Well, now that my credibility is shot to hell, I'll go ahead and point out the exception to the exception which sez you can't distribute these components and the GPL components 'together'.. I realize this is the point you were making in yer previous posts; and which I also think shoots down my stupid linux distros theory. Now I just wonder how the heck sun is legally going to bundle gnome.

again, apologies for the misread.


By blandry at Fri, 2001/06/29 - 5:00am

I've been reading posts (even past my own) and I was wondering, is it possible to change the licensing for KDE and its components? It is ludicrous that a license designed to protect developers and encourage software freedom is causing all of us hassles. Is there a way to change the license on KDE and its apps to a new license?

Just a suggestion :-)


By Steve Hunt at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> I've been reading posts (even past my own) and
> I was wondering, is it possible to change the
> licensing for KDE and its components? It is
> ludicrous that a license designed to protect
> developers and encourage software freedom is
> causing all of us hassles.

If it's a problem, just buy a commercial QT license and then release your software as you see fit.

Unless I'm missing something it really is that simple. You want a free toolkit, be prepared to make your software noncommercial and have the source available. If you don't like these restrictions, buy the commercial license and do as you please. I mean the full-blown version is only USD$2k in onesies; if you're writing commercial software this is practically nothing considering there are zero royalties or renewals.


By Andrew at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

Mmmh. I don't think he meant building comercial
apps with free librairies. I think he was simply astonished by the mess these license questions are making... simply look at this thread ! Quite complicated in fact...

However, I disagree with the GPLing librairies. FSF seems to fear someone steals code, and want to reny LGPL. However, I personnaly still consider that as restrictive, and not conform to the original goal, that was liberty. Even if it allows comercial people to use free librairies.

Free movement is not a comercial war (even if there are more and more comercial distros), it's a philosophy and a fight against intellectual and information monopoly. So why even wondering about commercial apps ?


By Casteyde at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

EXACTLY!!! It is ludicrous to have open source code, when the same organization can't work with it, much less any other organization. The GPL is great for some things, such as smaller independent programs. However, I don't understand why KDE is licensed under the GPL.

I'm not sure about this, but I think the reason that KDE is under the GPL is because the FSF, or some other organization yelled at the KDE people (as a whole) and influenced them to license the whole thing under the GPL. However, for such a large and diverse project such as KDE, the GPL is not the right solution IMHO.


By Steve Hunt at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

It seems more like KDE guys weren't aware, how fascistic license GPL really is. See for example.

http://mail.gnome.org/archives/gnome-kde-list/1999-May/msg00024.html


By nap at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

You can develop QT/Windows non-free apps only with Microsoft Visual Studio, which brings in it's own set of licensing details.

Visual Studio restricts how you can license your own works built with VC++? Since when? Can you quote from it's license to clarify?


By David Johnson at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

> So why not port GPL QT to Win32?

Already (mostly) been done:
http://cygwin.kde.org/

Granted, it isn't a straight port to Win32, but it is a port that runs under Cygwin with Cygwin/XFree86, which are both free software.

Before anyone gets there GPL in a knot, you should know that Cygwin is distributed under a modified GPL that specifically allows software meeting the Open Source definition to be linked to libcygwin1.a without requiring that said software be licensed under the GPL. Have a gander at http://cygwin.com/licensing.html for more information.

Harold


By Harold Hunt at Tue, 2001/07/03 - 5:00am

> GPL only prevents you from distributing GPL apps
> with non-GPL apps, it does not prevent people
> from using them together

Then how did SuSE managed to distribute Linux with YaST, which is proprietary?


By dc at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

> > GPL only prevents you from distributing GPL apps
> > with non-GPL apps, it does not prevent people
> > from using them together
>
> Then how did SuSE managed to distribute Linux with YaST, which is proprietary?

YaST does not link with the kernel; the GPL is viral only in respect of
code which is linked with/derived from the GPL code (roughly, read the GPL for the glorious details).


By Dre at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

>In any event, nice move from the trolls (at troll tech :)

No kidding! They've managed to make everyone happy - people who want to write GPL QT apps for personal use now get automatic Windows compatibility, which is a big win; plus they still get to sell QT to the only people who really pay for it - that is, corporations.

As was pointed out in an earlier thread, much of Trolltech's revenue comes from QT licenses for in-house specialized corporate apps. Therefore if QT/Win was GPL, corporations would simply GPL their in-house apps and avoid paying Trolltech, and the open-source community wouldn't even benefit because the in-house GPL apps would never make it outside of the companies.

Now they still make money here because corporations still have to pay even for in-house software, plus they gain more experienced QT developers because of QT's increased popularity (now it's the best free cross-platform widget set) and widespread availability on multiple platforms. Sounds like a QT/Win win win situation all around :-)

The only problem I see is now that a binary of QT/Win is freely downloadable, some unscrupulous corporations might just use it despite the license. It wouldn't be very likely that a corporation doing this would be caught.


By not me at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

> The only problem I see is now that a binary
> of QT/Win is freely downloadable, some
> unscrupulous corporations might just use it
> despite the license. It wouldn't be very
> likely that a corporation doing this would
> be caught.

Yeah, I have a feeling Trolltech might lose some money with this move. However, they will probably gain more than they lose.

Lots of Windows programs these days are non-commercial. I've even seen some GPL Windows apps. It's clear that some Windows developers do agree with free-software, the trouble is they code with the ultra-unportable MFC. Now all those developers can use Qt instead (and after they first use it they'll never go back). In other words, Qt usage will go up. More popularity for Trolltech in the Windows world.

The only part I'm not too clear on is the GPL aspect, and I should find out soon because I have a GPL Qt/X11 app I'm about to release and now I can make a Windows version too :) Of course, it's _my_ app so I could change the license for the Windows port if necessary.

I hope they do this for the upcoming Qt/Mac too. Get the world using Qt, get them coding cross-platform from the start.

-Justin


By Justin at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

Just make it LGPL instead. LGPL's the more sensible license choice, anyway.


By Jon at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

Exactly the same as piracy. They already had the problem with their old licenses...

In fact, I think companies want to pay for support / development of good stuffs. Even if it's available for download. Piracy is only a matter of people, not of companies, and people take less their company benefits in account than their own wallet... (no VAT, taken from benefits, etc.).

I already think this move is great both for Qt and free software. Windows developers can now build Qt apps easily for fun, and these apps will go naturally to KDE / Linux.

The other way is simply unbeleivable : why use Konqueror on Windows, where IE is there and (still) by far better ?

When you open a door, between two rooms, people of the more crowded one will ever go to the less one... So it's all benefits for free software, and it's all benefits for Qt which becomes a de facto standard.


By Casteyde at Thu, 2001/06/28 - 5:00am

>Once they're all running KDE under windows, it'll be really easy to "port" the users over to Linux etc.

Reminds me of something else:
"Once people start writing 16-bit Windows apps for OS/2, they'll quickly migrate to OS/2 natively."


By kev at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

Why always this relation to OS/2? Linux is not like OS/2!

In the same way developers are interested in making win32 apps run on linux, they should be even more interested in making linux apps run in windows.

If I make a commercial game with the engine GPLed and data not, why would I want to restrict myself to Linux only? I would want to make the game for Linux, Win32, Playstation2, Mac OS X, BeOS, whatever. I can do that with cross platform game toolkits like SDL. We don't have something like that for GUI apps. I think we need it. If it turns out that it's not QT and KDE, I will be sad.

There are other options. ParaGUI that runs on top of SDL, gtk-win32 (not quite there, but fixable), FLTK, and more on http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Vista/7184/guitool.html


By Vedran Rodic at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

I think that the point was that the OS/2 emulation was so good that people continued to write for windows. Therefore there was a continuing darth of application native to OS/2 and no one ever made the jump....


By john at Wed, 2001/06/27 - 5:00am

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