A general question about GPL....

I am really interested in starting a premium website and was wanting to use GPL’d software (such as the blender plugin for games and PHPBB)and some QPL’d software (a chat client). And was wondering if the GPL License applied ONLY to distribution of the software in general. Now I only plan to USE the GPL’d software and NOT distribute it in any way. Is this kosher or do I need to get permission from the Software owners to use on a premium board?

One other question, If I make modifications to the software am I obligated to distribute it or can I be real jerk and just use the modified code on my premium site? Remember I have no plans to distribute or sale any of the code. I simply want to use it on a premium site.

I am very new to this sort of thing and I am sure that someone here could help me out.

Thanks in advance.

As long as these things aren’t downloaded by the user there’s no distribution taking place.
Noone forces you to distribute your stuff. That’s just a lie issued by Microsoft. You can keep it all for yourself, but if you start giving it to others, you have to abide the GPL.
If you could give a more specific explaination of how these tools get used it’d be easier to help you…

OK I thought as much, just wanted to make sure.

So far as to what I want to do is

  1. Have a premium Forum Board (PHPbb)
  2. Have a Premium Chat Client for members (Voodoo) - This software is QPL’d and this is the one I would like to modify the most. But I think that the rules are basically the same, as long as I am not distrubuting or selling the code, I can do what I want. (At least that is the way I interpret the License)
  3. As far as Blender is concerned I would like to design some Online games with the Blender Plugin in mind (When they finally release the Library for the game engine later this summer :D) These Games of course would be for premium subscribers.
  4. There is also some GPL’d software where you can e-mail postcards and that would also be in the premium section.

Like I said above, I would in no way distribute or sell the code I used or modified. I would only use it in a paid website.

Thanks for the reponse.

If you’re using the web plugin, the .blend files do not fall under the GPL. They are your creations so you can attach any terms to them that you want. The Blender software itself (such as the web plugin, integrated .exe player, an the creation software) is GPL, so any distribution of those comes under the terms of the GPL.

If you make bug fixes to the original code, you should send a patch to the original author.

Just to be clear, it’s ‘ethically correct’ to send patches etc, but it’s not legally required if you don’t distribute the modified code.

Thanks for the responses. And again I was just wondering where I stood leagaly where GPL is concerned. And just for the record, if I do make modifications to the code that I thought would help fix bugs for the software, I would definitely release them to the owner of the code. I am not that much of a butthead. :stuck_out_tongue:

I just wanted to know if I was LEAGALLY required to do so under GPL. And wether or not it was legal to run GPL’d software in a premium forum.

Thanks again for the answers, I really appreciate it.