License compatibility issues?

Charles Swiger cswiger at
Fri Mar 6 22:16:55 UTC 2015

On Mar 6, 2015, at 1:39 PM, Mike Meyer <mwm at> wrote:
> After a discussion on another list, I'm wondering if anyone has ever done
> anything to verify that the license requirements of the dependencies of a
> package (I don't know of any licenses that would cause problems for a port,
> as those don't involve distribution of derived works in the form of a
> binary) are actually met?

Yes.  It is considered the responsibility of the port maintainer to
set NO_PACKAGE, RESTRICTED, etc appropriately for the default port options
so that the precompiled packages provided by the FreeBSD project are
legally OK to redistribute.

If an end-user chooses to select different dependencies, then they are
responsible for those choices.

> For instance, a port licensed under the EPL that is statically linked with a
> GPL'ed library would produce a binary that couldn't be legally distributed.

That is a concern, but end-users of the ports can still compile the two together
and use the result, even if they cannot legally redistribute the combination
to others.


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