Redistribution constraint

Ian Lance Taylor ian at
Fri Aug 20 14:00:40 UTC 2004

"Andrea Chiarelli" <a.chiarelli at> writes:

> But from a "philosophycal" point of view, what about my previous comment on
> the Free Distribution term of the Open Source Definition? Does it refer to
> the software as "a component of an aggregate software distribution" or to
> the software as single element?

Speaking precisely, it refers to the former.  Effectively, though, it
refers to the latter, because any software package can be repackaged
with "hello, world", and then both packages are a "component of an
aggregate software distribution" and must be redistributable with no
required fee.

I suppose that a license which required a fee when distributed by
itself, but did not require a fee when distributed with any other
package, might technically meet the requirements of the OSD.  I tend
to view this as a trivial defect to be fixed in the OSD.  I don't see
any reason why such a license would have to be approved by the OSI.
In particular, I don't see why any real world case would ever want
such a license.


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