[Desktop_printing] Ghostscript leading edge is now GPL!

Osamu MIHARA mihara.osamu at fxpsc.co.jp
Thu Jun 29 01:31:19 PDT 2006

I'm not sure what is going on in the GS community, but, seems to me, it 
just changes the one year delay of GPL version policy is changed to that 
AFPL and GPL versions are released at the same time. AFPL-GS 8.54 is 
release on 26th of May and GPL-GS 8.54 is release on 31st of May.  They 
may be identical except for the copyright notice.

The code is still under control of Artifex.  If you try to apply patches 
into it, the licenses of the patches should have non-GPL license such as 
MIT.  Otherwise, Artifex cannot use them for their commercial version of 
GS. (Although I don't know the relationship between Artifex GS and AFPL GS.)

The patches incorporated into ESP-GS is GPL of course, unless the patch 
provider stated it as MIT or other GPL-compatible and non-derivative 
type of license.  Also there are some conflicting features between 
ESP-GS and GPL-GS, such as CJK.  So merging ESP-GS into GPL-GS is a very 
tough effort, unless Artifex changes their policy drastically.

Is my understanding correct?

on 2006/06/20 18:23 Till Kamppeter said the following:
> Great news!
> So I think we (mainly the GhostScript team, Mike Sweet, me) must plan
> now how to make the GhostScript for the future distributions.
> Some ideas:
> - Move all modifications done in ESP GhostScript into the HEAD branch of
>   upstream GhostScript.
> - Drivers added to ESP GHostScript are probably not very difficult to
>   move over, as they are in the addons/ directory of ESP GhostScript
>   (http://svn.easysw.com/public/espgs/trunk/addons/). This directory can
>   be easily excluded for commercial builds.
> - The "cups" backend should go into a cups/ directory which also should
>   be easy to exclude for commercial builds.
> - Later on, the drivers in the addons/ directory (or nearly all built-in
>   drivers of GhostScript) should be decoupled from the core GhostScript,
>   for example by making one or more OpenPrinting vector driver modules
>   carrying these drivers. For that a piece of code needs to be developed
>   which on one end plugs into the "opvp" backend of GhostScript and on
>   the other end offers the internal driver API for GhostScript's
>   built-in drivers. This way (often unmaintained) legacy drivers do not
>   need to be adapted to changes in the internal API of GhostScript. Also
>   if there are third-party drivers with questionable license we will
>   have no problems any more. The new GhostScript developer could perhaps
>   also work on that.
> - Bug fixes done in ESP GhostScript must be checked whether they have to
>   be done also in upstream GhostScript.
> - Open bugs of ESP GhostScript (http://www.cups.org/espgs/str.php)
>   should be checked and merged into upstream GhostScript's Bugzilla.
> - It would be nice if the developers and contributors of ESP GhostScript
>   (Mike Sweet, me, Epson Avasys, ...) get commit access to the CVS or
>   Subversion of upstream GhostScript.
>    Till
> Bastian, Waldo wrote:
>> Some nice news on the ghostscript front. Ghostscript used to have a
>> staged release process where new releases where first released under the
>> AFPL and only after a year under the GPL. This approach led to a fork by
>> people who needed to get patches in the GPL version. It’s great to see
>> that this has been resolved.
>> See http://advogato.org/person/raph/diary.html?start=411
>> Waldo Bastian
>> Linux Client Architect - Client Linux Foundation Technology
>> Channel Platform Solutions Group
>> Intel Corporation - http://www.intel.com/go/linux
>> OSDL DTL Tech Board Chairman
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-- Osamu Mihara

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