Synaptics MIT license approved

Graeme Gill graeme2 at
Thu May 17 06:22:14 PDT 2007

Matthew Garrett wrote:
> As Alan noted, the issue is derivation rather than linking. For this to 
> actually be a problem, we would need to hold that the X server is a 
> derived work of the GPLed Synaptics driver (thereby falling under the 
> GPL), and that the shipped proprietary X driver is a derived work of the 
> GPLed X server rather than the byte-for-byte identical MIT/X11 one 
> without the Synaptics driver. This clearly isn't true at the source 
> level, so the issue is whether it's true when distributing binaries. 

No, it's a matter of whether a package that ships both the X server
and the Synaptics driver is a derived work of the Synaptics
driver, and it clearly is. The inclusion of the Synaptics
driver doesn't change or have any hold over the non-GPL code,
but a packaging that includes both, and does not fall under
the GPL "mere aggregation" clause, is clearly a derived work.

Graeme Gill.

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