Rockbox is mainly GPL v2 or later

I just wanted to express this loud and clearly:

At the Rockbox devcon back in June, we discussed this issue and we did deem the Rockbox license to be “GPL v2 or later”, so during this summer we have updated the Rockbox source code headers pretty much all over to reflect this fact. (Previously we had a bit of flux where the exact “v2” or “v2 or later” status wasn’t expressed.)

Of course we have not (and should not) change the headers for files we have imported into the project, and there are still pieces in Rockbox that are plain GPLv2 (without the “or later”) like a few snippets that origin from the Linux kernel.

We also did receive permission from Bernard Leach, the main ipodlinux kernel hacker, to put his code under the “v2 or later” label as well.

The net result is of course that Rockbox is GPLv2 but with the largest parts v2 or later.


Flash 10 uses native libcurl

In Adobe’s Penguin.SWF blog, we can learn some details about the upcoming version 10 of the Adobe flash player for Linux:

They’ll rely on more libraries to be present in the system rather than provide them all by themselves in their own install. This apparently includes libcurl.

So if you get the RPM of the pre-release player, you’ll notice that it requires “” which is the old SONAME for libcurl (libcurl 7.15.5 was the last release which used the number 3) which no up-to-date distribution should provide anymore. Since october 2006 we’ve shipped

Apparently, this made the Fedora people first implement a work-around for this that re-introduces the SONAME 3 from the same source the SONAME 4 is made from, only to a short while afterwards revert that decision

An interesting side-note is how the Fedora people repeat over and over in those threads that libcurl with SONAME 3 and SONAME 4 use the same ABI, although that is not true (at least not by my definition of what an ABI is). The bump was not accidentally made.

Update: it seems some blame this 3 == 4 thing on Debian

Projects in need of your help

I’m involved in numerous projects, and a subset of them take a lot of my “copious” spare time. This has the unfortunate downside that a few other projects get left behind a bit. Projects that also really could use with some more attention and improvements. Two of the most obvious examples of this are c-ares and libssh2. Coincidentally, both of these projects are also used by libcurl (although of course also by others).

c-ares is a library that performs asynchronous DNS lookups. It is quite mature and functional already, as it is based on the ares project and has been proved in use for quite some time. There are currently one or two issues that have appeared recently when the Debian project tried to provide the curl package built with c-ares…

libssh2 is a client library for talking SSH2 with servers. There are actually not very many SSH libraries “out there”, and in an evaluation I did a few years ago libssh2 was the best one around. libcurl uses libssh2 for SCP and SFTP transfers, and it (libssh2) does suffer from a few API flaws, a few bugs and perhaps most noticably it is significantly slower than the openssh tools in just about all transfer tests.

I’m still highly involved in both of these projects, but lack of time prevents me from participating as much as I’d like to.

Two fellow curl hackers

During many years I was really and truly the primary and almost single developer of curl and libcurl. Sure we’ve always got a steady stream of quality patches by contributors but I was the single guy who cared for the whole picture and who took on greater work to advance the project.

This is no longer the case. These days there are more people around that bite the really big bullets and who show that they know a lot about the internals, the protocols and have a feel and understanding for the general ideas and concepts of the project. I think they get too little attention, so I thought I’d put the light on two of our bright hackers that really are true rocks in the community:

Daniel Fandrich first appeared on the curl-library list in April 2003. More than 1500 email posts later, he’s a knowledgeable, friendly and skilled contributor in just about all areas of curl and libcurl.

Yang Tse appeared on the curl-users list in September 2005 and has somewhat specialized in cleaning up dusty corners of the code. Redoing things The Right Way, fixing compiler warnings and fixing up configure checks so that the code runs all over as it is supposed to.

These are two of our valuable committers. counts 10 committers during the last 12 months, which puts us within the top 10% of all project teams on Ohloh!

But as I mentioned above, the curl development is largely built upon patches provided by people who send in one or two patches and never appear in the project again. We have over 650 named contributors and the list keeps growing at a steady pace all the time.

You can be our next contributor or even committer. Just join us and help out!

curl feature freeze on August 10

In order to get the next curl release done, we’re entering feature freeze on Sunday August 10 (at 00:00 UTC to make it specific).

Starting then, we add no new features for the upcoming two weeks but we only fix bugs. At the end of the two week period, or possibly before that if all looks well, we release 7.19.0.

The work on CURLOPT_POSTREDIR and the “Limiting IP addresses” work can of course continue but if we don’t have working patches for them very quickly, they’ll have to wait for next release.

HTTP implementations

I previously mentioned on the libcurl mailing list, that Mark Nottingham in the IETF HTTP Working Group has initiated the work on putting together an overview of all (interesting) existing HTTP implementations

Of course curl is included in the bunch, or rather libcurl, but I would also urge you all to step forward and provide further details on other implementations you worked on or know of!