Trolltech to Extend Dual Licensing to Qt for Windows

Trolltech, maker of the Qt toolkit which forms the basis for KDE,

announced today
that the Qt version for Microsoft Windows will be available under the GPL in addition to its current commercial license offerings for that platform. This change will take place with the release of Qt 4. The Qt version for Linux has been available under a similar dual licensing scheme for several years already. The availability of a GPL'ed Qt for Microsoft Windows will make it much easier to distribute KDE applications that run on the Microsoft Windows platform.


How so?
- Proprietary means no one may take your stuff.
- LGPL means anyone can take your stuff.
- GPL means anyone can take your stuff, if you in return are allowed to take their stuff.

GPL therefore has more rules, but the extra rule is used to guaranty a greater freedom. Therefore the comparison to a modern free-society that has more rules than an anarchy but uses those to guaranty greater freedom for the individuals.

By carewolf at Thu, 2005/02/10 - 6:00am

Thank you Trolltech!

This will give your toolkit total dominance (we will - once available - make it default for all internal projects) and well deserved.

And of course, Free Software is going to be able to gain large user populations over. I think KDE on Windows is going to be much better as a native application.

I personally will love to recommend e.g. KimDaba and Kate to Windows users. :-)


By Debian User at Mon, 2005/02/07 - 6:00am

Now this is great news! I hope in time this proves to be a good move for Qt!
One question. Would it be possible now for WxWindows to use Qt? Or does it need LGPL?

By John Qt Freak at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

According to http://www.trolltech.com/developer/faqs/duallicense.html#q18 , "Commercial customers will have access to a package containing a prebuilt Qt library." Does this mean that there won't be a standard Qt dll for Windows????!!!! This seems like it would be a major problem - Windows is a monolithic platform, we can't have all these different people having their own "builds" of the Qt library!

By LuckySandal at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

And who said that the KDE project's goal was Linux advocation?

By Plisken at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

Heh. You should see what happens when someone commits something for win32 that breaks or even causes problems for the *nix workings.

There are a couple of developers who keep KDE building on the BSD unixes, there is one developer who maintains the OSX port of KDE. Will anyone actually start porting the KDE apps? KDE as an environment doesn't make any sense since Windows comes with it's own environment.

It all comes down to someone willing to do the work. I know that KDE will be around for Linux in the years to come. I would deploy it without any fear of it disappearing. But windows ports? Talk to me in two or three years. The same goes for Evolution.

Has any project been successful in attracting win32 developers?

This is a good move for Trolltech, and will spread their developer mindshare even further.


By Derek Kite at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

Why type if you won't answer the question? Or maybe you got very confused and thought you were posting to another thread.

By Plisken at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

There is one developer working on win32 stuff.

There are more than 200 active contributors.

The KDE desktop on Windows is a non starter.

KDE is primarily a desktop environment.

I would say that KDE advocates for *nix. (Linux, the BSD's, and some proprietary unixes)

Let me repeat. KDE desktop has no possibilities, no future, no place on Windows. There is already a well entrenched desktop that is probably very difficult if not impossible to replace.

Some KDE applications may find a place on windows, but time will tell. And that will be up to individuals who are moved to do the work to maintain them.

As I said, this move is good for Trolltech. I suspect it will have very little effect on KDE. If I see two or three dozen windows developers join up and start contributing, then I will be proved wrong.


By Derek Kite at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

Well said!

By matt at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

In reality, the KDE desktop is a non-starter on Linux as long as it relies on the Qt toolkit. Too late now.

By Plisken at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

That's trolling and BS.

By matt at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

If I could develop PyQt apps cross platform under the GPL, that would be awesome.

By Jon Scobie at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

I've seen a report on the PyKDE mailing list that someone got the recent WIN32 port of Qt3 (GPL), and PyQt compilied and working on Windows. So it is possible. What is now needed is a neatly compiled and packaged up version Qt3 and PyQt that people can easily install and use. Volunteers? anyone?


By Simon Edwards at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

... .NET on Windows and must do a desperate move!

By performa 300 at Tue, 2005/02/08 - 6:00am

Ahh, here is the reason for the discussed business decision. Thank you!
Hehe :-)

By Anonymous at Wed, 2005/02/09 - 6:00am

I didn't read all the comments, but most seem to be about using KDE to get people to migrate... nevermind that most people in the Windows world don't know what KDE is or could even name a KDE app.

I've already migrated though to Linux. And I'm happy using KDE. However, it would be a great boost to KDE developement if it had a larger userbase. Something like amaroK would catch on pretty well in Windows, I imagine. And if the userbase swelled to double, or triple the size it could only mean more developers. Which is what I care about: a better user experience for me.

People who know what Linux is about generally like the philosophy of FOSS. That's what made me jump over. What's driving people to Linux is definately not, "Oh! I hear the new versions of konqueror and koffice are so uber, time to make the switch!" They already have parallel software: IE/MSoffice, or Firefox/OOo. But, get konq and company running under Windows and you just might attract more developers. As a side effect, you might even improve the user-friendly image of Linux... but that shouldn't be the main aim.

By thomas at Wed, 2005/02/09 - 6:00am