GNOME to rely on Mono?

Ciaran O'Riordan ciaran at
Fri Nov 23 10:36:09 UTC 2007

Tonnerre has blogged that the GNOME project has decided to rely on Mono:

RMS has previously pointed out that this is a bad idea:

Miguel De Icaza now says there's nothing to worry about because Mono is to
be split in two.  The part that MS got standardised by ECMA will be
separated out and GNOME will only rely on that part.  He says that MS's
patent promise is good for that part because in addition to the normal
promise that ECMA requires (which talks about "RAND"), those who contributed
to the ECMA standard have agreed to define RAND as zero price.

Miguel's statement is here:
(skip down to the "legalese" section)

And his comment about zero price is here:

When the only person telling us to not worry about Microsoft's patents is a
Novell employee, I worry.  Does anyone know if the danger has really been
avoided or if there is some published explanation/criticism of this?

That would be great, thanks.

This lead me to read the Mono FAQ where I found some strange statements.

One was that they used a permissive (MIT/X11) licence for the classes
because they didn't like the term "derivative work" in the LGPL.  If that's
the case, they should consider LGPLv3 now that that term has been replaced
by international wording.

A more interesting part is about Novell selling non-free licences for the
Mono code so that people can make proprietary versions:

 "if you manufacture a device where the end user is not able to do an
  upgrade of the Mono virtual machine or the Moonlight runtime from the
  source code, you will need a commercial license of Mono and Moonlight."

This seems untrue.  Have I missed something?

(The FAQ says that the software is all under either the GPL, the LGPL, or
the MIT/X11 licence.)

CiarĂ¡n O'Riordan __________________ \ Support Free Software and GNU/Linux _________ \     Join FSFE's Fellowship: \

More information about the Discussion mailing list