GHC and readline

Manuel M T Chakravarty
Mon, 16 Sep 2002 15:48:23 +1000 (EST)

Ashley Yakeley <> wrote,

> At 2002-09-15 16:43, Glynn Clements wrote:
> >Readline is a GNU package, available from
> >
> >However, note that it is GPL (not LGPL), so it's only legally usable
> >in GPL'd programs.
> Eeesh! So this means any GHC code that uses package util (or data, which 
> depends on it) must be distributed GPL.

Well, it depends on whether this code makes use of the
readline functionality or not.  If, say, you are just using
GetOpt from "util", there is no need for you to make your
program GPL, only because Readline happens to be in the same

If, however, you do use readline functionality, then it's a
different matter.

> Would it be possible to isolate readline-using code in a separate 
> package? I'm pretty sure I don't need readline functionality for what I'm 
> doing, but I do need the "data" package...
> Currently I distribute the source code for my HBase library under LGPL. 
> But because HBase binaries would typically include readline code, users 
> of my binaries would be obliged to comply with the GPL.

What do you mean by "would typically include readline
code".  Does it use readline or not?  If not, no need to
change the license.

As for package reorganisation, the new libraries structure
takes care of things like that.