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Guide: Copyright and Redistribution Information

There are three parts of DJGPP that you'll use when you build your programs with DJGPP:

  1. The tools and utilities, like gcc and make.
  2. The standard C and C++ runtime library (stub, crt0.o, and libc.a, maybe libstdcxx.a)
  3. Third-party libraries, like libgxx.a and Allegro.

The copyrights on the tools and utilities don't effect your program at all. If they did, then every programmer in the world would have to pay royalties to whoever made their text editor. The mere fact that you used gcc to compile your program, for example, in no way restricts what you can do with the resulting program.

The copyrights on DJGPP's standard libraries, like libc.a (which every program needs) and libstdcxx.a (the C++ standard support library, which is required for "standard" C++ support), have copyrights that do not restrict what you can do with programs that link in those libraries. Thus, the fact that you used DJGPP's runtime environment to make your cool new game doesn't mean that you (legally) owe anything to the DJGPP group. Of couse, we ask that you mention that you used DJGPP, and how to get it, just to help spread the word about us.

Third party libraries come with their own copyrights, and it's important to understand those copyrights before you use those libraries. Compliance with those copyrights is between you and the copyright owner, which is not the DJGPP group. By "third party library" I refer to all libraries, objects, and source code that becomes part of your program. So, if you use gcc to compile your program, that's one thing, but if you use one of gcc's source files to implement a similar functionality in your program, that's a third party library and you have to comply with thier copyrights.

Note that linking libstdcxx.a or libiostr.a, the standard C++ libraries, does not affect the copyright status of your program, but linking libgpp.a (the GNU C++ class library) instead will require that your program comply with its LGPL copyright.

If you want to redistribute DJGPP itself, then that's a different story. Since DJGPP is made up of programs and modules from many authors with many different copyrights for their contributions, it is important that you follow our simple rules when redistributing DJGPP:

Note that the GNU copyright, which covers most of the utilities in Djgpp (like gcc and make), has its own redistribution terms. Even if you make other redistribution arrangements with me for DJGPP, you must still comply with their redistribution terms for their programs. The file COPYING in most of the source distributions spells out their terms.


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  Copyright 1997   by DJ Delorie     Updated Apr 1997