Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-packaging (107 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-packaging] Editing openSUSE packages
  • From: Juergen Weigert <jw@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 6 May 2009 21:58:19 +0200
  • Message-id: <20090506195819.GH28601@xxxxxxx>
Donning my legal hat for a
Minute (which does not make me a lawyer at all).

On May 06, 09 20:50:31 +0200, Wolfgang Rosenauer wrote:

c) The copyright headers: what about them? I suppose they were created
automatically... now they just are a problem to me.
- Are they really needed??? I would really prefer them to be removed.

Yes. A spec file without a copyright header is in Neverland.
Novell and everybody else needs to know that it is a distributable thing.

I don't have any problem asigning copyright to openSUSE or Novell, but
if they can be removed it's something less to worry about.

You should not assign your copyright to anybody, unless specifically asked
for. A spec file that says 'Copyright Novell' does so for historic reasons,
when every packager was a Novell employee.
But if Novell is already in the copyright line, don't delete it, only add
to the line. Or add additional copyright lines.

If we - Novell - want copyright assignment, we should say so prominently,
and not try to gain it by enforcing a silly header.

If aren't removed
- I found one that says "Copyright (c) 2007"... should I change it to
"Copyright (c) 2007-2009" or to "Copyright (c) 2009"? Any specific
format? I don't really know if it's important from a law POV.

Changing a 2007 into a 2009 is not good. Make this read 2007-2009 if you
have been working on it during the years, or make it read 2007,2009 if you
believe nobody touched it in 2008.

For a trivial specfile or those that were created without much human input,
all this may not really matter, due to the lack of copyrightable substance.
But over time, a specfile can become a complex piece of artwork, then it
suddenly could matter.

- "spec file for package <package> (Version <version>)". I really hate
to have an extra place where I need to change the version, it's really

I'd drop the version number there, if it is not updated automatically.

Again once the package goes to Factory all the information and headers
are changed. So you don't need to fiddle with it at all since you have
no control speaking for Factory.

If this is really the case, then we - Packagers - still need a way to correct
false headers.


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