Müller, Marcus (CEL) mueller at
Tue Apr 16 12:16:52 UTC 2019

I am, too, not a lawyer, but:
The GPL is meant to ensure exactly what you plan to do doesn't happen:
If you distribute a program based on librtlsdr, the person receiving
your software has a right to its source code.
Dynamically linking usually doesn't change that fact; that's
interaction directly between machine code through shared state/memory.

Best regards,

On Tue, 2019-04-16 at 07:36 -0400, Richard Frye wrote:
> I want to write a program that is for sale without releasing all of the source code. Some of it is fine but parts are proprietary. Does it matter if I dynamically link the rtlsdr library? 
> -Richard
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019, 8:45 PM Greg Troxel <gdt at> wrote:
> > Richard Frye <richard at> writes:
> > 
> > > If I write software that uses the rtlsdr library that is already installed
> > > on the computer, does my software also have to be opensource?
> > 
> > 
> > rtl-sdr and osmo-sdr both appear to be GNU GPLv2.
> > 
> > The standard interpretation is that if you create a derived work by
> > writing a program that uses those libraries, then distributing that
> > derived work requires permission from the copyright holders of the used
> > libraries.  And, that permission is only available if you license your
> > work under the same license, GPLv2.  That is the point of the license.
> > 
> > If you want to write software and not distribute it at all, that's
> > another matter, and the standard interpetation is that this is ok.
> > 
> > What are you trying to write, and what are you thinking about for
> > licensing, other than GPLv2?
> > 
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