[Xapian-devel] Xapian license change

Wichert Akkerman wichert at wiggy.net
Wed May 16 16:37:52 BST 2012

Like Amish Shah who posted earlier this month to this list I find myself 
interested in Xapian, but currently not being able to use it due to its 
GPL license. I am aware of the CommercialLicence wiki page, but have not 
been able to find any current status or anything willing to work on it, 
so I am wondering if perhaps I could help. As far as I can see several 
things would need to happen:

  * a new license (or set of licenses) will need to be chosen
  * current copyright holders will need to sign off on the relicensing
  * dependencies on GPLed libraries (think getopt) will need to replaced

Looking at older posts and the xapian website it seems that LGPL has 
been suggested as an alternative license, but I can not find a clear 

Judging by the copyright statements in the sources (for xapian-core) 
there are 18 copyright holders, which is a manageable list:

  * Action Without Borders
  * Adam Sjøgren
  * Ananova Ltd
  * Brandon Schaefer
  * BrightStation PLC
  * Dan Colish
  * Dr Martin Porter
  * Evgeny Sizikov
  * Hein Ragas
  * Kan-Ru Chen
  * Kevlin Henney
  * Lemur Consulting Ltd
  * Olly Betts
  * Orange PCS Ltd
  * Richard Boulton
  * Sam Liddicott
  * Scriptics Corporation.
  * Yung-chung Lin

Does anyone have any idea how willing these copyright holders might be 
to approve relicensing?


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