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I am trying to make my first app for sale, I would like to ask some questions for those who have already sold their software:

  • Have you used a Framework/Lib whose LGPL License?
  • if yes, what are the impressions of your customers? for example, if your customers/ competitors from the market reveal technology/secrets that you used in your solution (as LGPL requires that you make a Dynamic Link (.DLL) for your libs and you clearly tell the use of a Lib/Framework).

Full story: For my project, I used a framework LGPL/commercial (Dual License) the second one it was too expensive (about 3000 USD) which pushed me to use LGPL however I still concerned. That is why I ask for advise and especially motivations.

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closed as not a real question by Robert Harvey, gnat, ChrisF Sep 8 '12 at 10:18

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
What are you asking, exactly? If customers like software containing LGPL components? –  Robert Harvey Sep 8 '12 at 1:59
    
Well, questions are already asked in the top..,I ask for the "risks" of using the LGPL..in other words i don't like my software becomes damn because of LGPL.. –  Smarty Twiti Sep 8 '12 at 2:22
    
@SmartyTwiti - The problem is that we don't understand your questions. "if yes, what are the impressions of your customers?" What does that mean? "if your customers/ competitors from the market reveal technology/secrets that you used in your solution (as LGPL requires that you make a Dynamic Link (.DLL) for your libs and you clearly tell the use of a Lib/Framework ...)." What does that mean? –  Stephen C Sep 8 '12 at 4:10
    
@SmartyTwiti - "i don't like my software becomes damn because of LGPL". Literally that is nonsense, because software doesn't have a soul. So what are you REALLY worried about? –  Stephen C Sep 8 '12 at 4:12

2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Have you used a Framework/Lib whose LGPL License?

Yes.

if yes, what are the impressions of your customers? for example, if your customers/ competitors from the market reveal technology/secrets that you used in your solution (as LGPL requires that you make a Dynamic Link (.DLL) for your libs and you clearly tell the use of a Lib/Framework ...).

It is not at all clear what you are really asking here.

  • If you are asking if your customers will think badly of your product if it uses LGPL components, then the answer is almost certainly no.

  • If you are asking if your customers will be able to tell (if they looked), then the answer is yes.

  • If you are asking if this is revealing your secrets to your customers, well I guess you are to a small degree; i.e. it will be clear to them which LGPL libraries you are using. But does it really matter? Would this really damage you / help your competitors? Really?

In other words, the use of LGPL can bring my project failure?

None of the scenarios you have mentioned would result in project failure. There are scenarios which could get you into problems (with LGPL), but you would to do something that violated the license for that to happen. (For instance, by hard linking the LGPL code with yours ...)

But, hey, you don't HAVE TO use open source in general or LGPL in particular. There are alternatives; e.g.

  • pay money for proprietary libraries with redistribution rights, or
  • implement the functionality yourself.

Your money, your effort, your choice. But you need to READ the license ... in the proprietary case too.


In response to @akton. Different lawyers will give you different answers on questions like this. And you need to know exactly what the question and context for the question are.

But ask yourself this. What is the motivation of the lawyer in giving the advice? And, have you ever heard of a company that is following the letter and spirit of the LGPL getting into legal trouble over it?

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@setephen: I have not explained well..I'm sorry about that.. However, you understand my question(+1). Well, I would like to ask another question according to your answer : what about legal risk , it is really necessary to contact a lawyer ? –  Smarty Twiti Sep 8 '12 at 8:17
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Unless you explain what legal risk you are actually worried about, I don't have a chance of answering this. And of course, if you want sound advice on a legal matter, you should always ask a lawyer ... but you would be well advised to 1) pick a lawyer who is an IP expert and 2) think carefully about what you want to ask him/her. –  Stephen C Sep 8 '12 at 11:59

Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer.

Dual license arrangements can be tricky to negotiate. The intention may be to give customers flexibility but the license wording does not necessarily reflect that. From what you have written, it sounds like you are bound by LGPL if you have not purchased the other license.

LGPL is difficult license to work around. It is better than GPL but it is much more restrictive than the BSD or MIT licenses, for example. Most developers read the LPGL license and understand its intention but lawyers can read the same text differently, particularly paranoid or malicious ones. Consequently, with one notable exception (Linux), the company I work for prohibits the use of LGPL software in non-SaaS software we sell.

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1  
So you're saying that the legal standing of LGPL is dubious enough to preclude its use in your projects? –  Robert Harvey Sep 8 '12 at 2:01
    
@RobertHarvey I have not spoken at length to the company lawyers about it but, yes, it is on my company's "Red List". I know the clause on patents is a concern and some of the wording, particularly in earlier versions of the LGPL, was vague. –  akton Sep 8 '12 at 2:25

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