Cygwin & Microsoft's EULA, was: Re: Dispelling BSD License Misconceptions (fwd)

Dalibor Topic robilad at
Fri Jan 19 13:11:20 UTC 2007

Matthew Flaschen <matthew.flaschen <at>> writes:

> Chuck Swiger wrote:
> >>> Absolutely not; this isn't a matter where you have to guess, go to:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> ...and choose your favorite version of Visual Studio.  One version of
> >>> the EULA states:
> > [ ...Microsoft EULA snipped for brevity... ]
> >>> You can't mix this EULA with the GPL under any circumstances, including
> >>> the exception mentioned in GPL #3.
> >>
> >> Why not?  I think this exception ensures the DLLs wouldn't fall under
> >> the GPL; thus neither i or ii should be violated.
> > 
> > Microsoft EULA's not only impose many additional constraints which are
> > not GPL-miscible, the M$ EULA explicitly forbid one to create a
> > derivative work of "Redistributable Code - Visual C++: Microsoft
> > Foundation Classes (MFC), Active Template Libraries (ATL), and C
> > runtimes (CRTs)" in conjunction with an "Excluded License", which the
> > GPL obviously is.
> I'm fairly certain the GPL would allow the DLLs to be excluded from
> Corresponding Source due to the system library exception.  However, I
> now see you're right that that doesn't address the problem of the GPLed
> binary being a derivative work.  I don't know the answer to this
> question.  It's quite possible that Microsoft isn't fully enforcing
> their EULA here.

Microsoft's Visual Studio EULA is not particularly relevant for Cygwin, since it
uses gcc to build, rather than Visual Studio.

On the other hand, if Microsoft's goal with this licensing clause is to prevent
the creation of competing GPLd software using it's market-dominant Windows
compiler technology on their platform, then that should raise a concern with
EU's trade regulation bodies. 

How does one go about launching a complaint there?

dalibor topic

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