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Qt Becomes LGPL

CmdrTaco posted more than 5 years ago | from the that's-just-adorable dept.

GUI 828

Aequo writes "Qt, the highly polished, well documented, modern GUI toolkit owned by Nokia, will be available under the LGPL starting with version 4.5! It was previously only mainly available under the GPL and a commercial license. Selling licenses was an important part of Qt under Trolltech as it was the company's main source of income, but Trolltech is a fruit-fly compared to Nokia, who want to encourage and stimulate the use of Qt Everywhere [PDF]. This is fantastic news for all commercial developers looking to create cross-platform applications without the need to buy a $4950 multi-platform license per developer."

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Hello Moto (2, Insightful)

Dupple (1016592) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448083)

Let's hope Motorola sign up. Their UI is consistently inconsistent and awful

Re:Hello Moto (-1, Troll)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448187)

Wow, that's crappy news. There's a whole group of people out there who couldn't afford the commercial license and were trying to make their business/development work around the GPL who now no longer have any need to make the effort, and therefore won't.

Thanks Nokia.

Re:Hello Moto (1, Insightful)

kb (43460) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448265)

People who adapt their business model to their choice of UI toolkit deserve to fail miserably anyway, so where's the damage?

Re:Hello Moto (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448377)

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Re:Hello Moto (1, Insightful)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448831)

The GPL is inherently corrupt and restrictive, so this is a great move.

(The LGPL isn't the best of licenses--the BSD license in a perfect world, or the CDDL/MPL otherwise--but it's a hell of a lot better than the GPL!)

Bravo, Nokia, and thank you.

Re:Hello Moto (2, Informative)

jonwil (467024) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448461)

I have a Motorola Z6 that contains QT binaries (most likely QT embedded) on it so they are already using it on their linux phones at least.

LGPL (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448085)

More like Lesser communism amiright?

time to port gnome! (5, Insightful)

SolusSD (680489) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448149)

Seriously though- Reasons to write applications for the gnome desktop environment are getting fewer every day. When QT4 became available under the GPL on all 4 major platforms- Windows/BSD/Linux/OSX the argument for GTK was weak. Now, I'd argue its virtually non-existent.

Re:time to port gnome! (1)

geminidomino (614729) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448205)

Agreed. I was all set to start learning GTK so I could finally write GUI apps instead of unix-tastic command line pipes.

Hopefully 4.5 comes out before this summer (too much coursework + realwork to start before then) so I don't have to! (I have no desire to write GPL software).

Re:time to port gnome! (4, Informative)

IceFox (18179) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448659)

Should be out before summer, on #qt people are saying March.

It is a mistake to even think of porting (5, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448273)

I use to be a KDE developer, and I have to say that I love QT/KDE platform (and still use it). But with that said, I find that OSS moves faster BECAUSE of friendly competition, not in spite of it.

Strategy fail (4, Interesting)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448431)

Open source desktops fail really hard from a strategic point of view because of the split between GTK and Qt. They store l10n and i18n settings in separate places, they look different, the dialogs have different configurations, etc. It creates a desktop that feels less unified, more like a bunch of random applications than a single system.

Of course, porting GNOME would take so long that people would forget that GNOME even exists. The unfortunate reality is that this split will only be resolved when either GNOME and all of the associated GTK applications die, or KDE and its associated applications die (unfortunately, that would mean a loss of K3B, one of the applications that made open source desktops usable for non-technical users).

Re:Strategy fail (2, Interesting)

siride (974284) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448707)

What? Within a desktop, everything is more or less consistent. Yes, there is some inconsistency *between* desktops, but if you avoid using programs from another desktop, it's not a problem. Also, there are themes that make the apps look the same, and the copy/paste problems were solved years ago. Honestly, I have no trouble using mixed apps on the same desktop.

Re:Strategy fail (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448793)

try netbeans under kde.

Re:Strategy fail (-1, Flamebait)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448875)

Right, one desktop's programs for everybody! Because people really want to use Kopete under KDE instead of Pidgin (bahahahaha) or any of the GNOME text editors under GNOME instead of something like Kate (baaaaaaaaahahahahaha).

Users are more or less forced to mix them up, and I still have clipboard issues with crossing between applications to this day.

Re:Strategy fail (5, Interesting)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448891)

"if you avoid using programs from another desktop"

Which is just not possible. Where is the CD burning program in GNOME that beats K3B? Where is the music player that beats Amarok? In the other direction, where is the office suite that beats You cannot avoid mixing GTK and Qt apps on a desktop without hurting yourself.

"Honestly, I have no trouble using mixed apps on the same desktop."

Just three days ago at FUDCon, I saw someone try to use KGPG on their GNOME desktop. He had localized GNOME in Dutch, and when KGPG pops up...everything was in English. The localization settings are stored in different places, which is a problem that goes beyond "installing themes to make it look the same." There is also the failure to have OLE across Qt and GTK, which has so far only been solved by disparate hacks in specific applications, and only works for certain cases. The copy and paste problems being solved was a good thing, but that is only one of many issues that arise from mixing GTK and Qt apps on a single system.

Re:time to port gnome! (2, Interesting)

liquidpele (663430) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448309)

I was actually pretty close to writing an app in GTK because I'm broke but wanted it to be cross platform and not java... but I suppose I'll have to reconsider now. Anyone know what the best GUI interface builder program for QT is?

Re:time to port gnome! (5, Informative)

puetzk (98046) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448405)

Qt Designer is part of the core package, and is excellent.

Re:time to port gnome! (3, Insightful)

robot_love (1089921) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448471)

I second this. It takes a bit of time to learn to use Qt Designer, but it saved my hours in the long run. And it's not really that hard.

Re:time to port gnome! (4, Informative)

Cthefuture (665326) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448681)

There is also now Qt Creator [] which show some promise as a cross-platform IDE.

Re:time to port gnome! (1)

carnalforge (1207648) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448443)

Qt Assistant, included with Qt. Add to it kdevelop, probably the best tools for GUI programming on qt/kde supported platforms.

Re:time to port gnome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448493)

Qt Creator []

Re:time to port gnome! (0, Redundant)

gomek-ramek (1340625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448515)

Qt Designer []

Re:time to port gnome! (2)

wild_berry (448019) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448993)

Qt Creator is the official Qt IDE. But don't overlook KDevelop, which provides great autocomplete and semantic tools for your program code, if you're going to go a bit further than Qt 4.4 and use some of the KDE4 libs.

Re:time to port gnome! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448325)

Not having specifically used either GTK or Qt (okay, so I gave Qt a quick spin in 2001, wasn't too impressed, but I usually use either LabView or web programming with C++/PHP) there something particularly nice about Qt vs. GTK?

Re:time to port gnome! (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448389)

GTK+ is object oriented C. (Yes - object oriented C.) It relies on a ton of crazy libraries to work. It's only cross-platform if you mean "Windows and Linux" and even there "cross-platform" is a giant stretch.

Versus Qt, which is C++, has a much cleaner set of interfaces, and is really "cross-platform" on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X.

The only reason I ever used GTK+ over Qt was due to licensing concerns. (And not just for closed software, also due to GPL/Apache licensing incompatibilities.)

So, yes, Qt is much better documented and much cleaner than GTK+.

Re:time to port gnome! (5, Informative)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448559)

Qt has a better set of widgets, at least for some applications. I have a friend who works for a major financial services company, which standardized on GTK only to discover that certain table related widgets were just not available, but were available in Qt.

I am told, though I have not tried it, that it is harder to develop multithreaded programs in GTK than in Qt. This matters a lot more than people like to think; how many times have you seen a UI not getting updated because of some background operation, and then had some uninformed user think that the program was freezing or crashing?

Finally, while both are object oriented, GTK is written entirely in C. Object oriented programming in C is pretty harsh, and the only other option you really have is to use the Python binding, which introduces a whole new set of issues. Qt is a C++ toolkit, which makes for much cleaner code when it comes to object orientedness. They did extend C++ somewhat with MOC, but that just introduces some new keywords that fit in very well with the general structure of C++.

Re:time to port gnome! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448337)

Since GNOME is currently brainstorming over how to make GNOME 3, I'd say this announcement come right on time.
Let's focus on the applications and not on reinventing the wheel.
The toolkit feud has gone on for far too long. Let's share a common toolkit. GNOME is using more Vala and C#/Mono these days and Vala/C#/Mono on top of Qt would make gnomies very happy I think.

Re-implementing GNOME on top of Qt with the traditional focus on HIG should not be all that hard.

This is an exiting opportunity for GNOME. I wonder if they'll embrace it and make the Linux desktop go forward.

Re:time to port gnome! (1)

gentlemen_loser (817960) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448827)

This is an exiting opportunity for GNOME. I wonder if they'll embrace it and make the Linux desktop go forward."

I do not think that having multiple desktops and libraries are a bad thing, by any means. Firstly, without competition, things tend to languish. Granted KDE still has to compete with OS X and Windows, but having another competitor never hurts. If nothing else, Gnome and the Gtk+ toolkit would offer yet another flavor of experience for people with those specific tastes. Gnome has always felt a little more UNIXy to me.

With (obviously) enough people willing to work on and develop both projects, why not let them/encourage them to do so? Also, there is nothing stopping you from running your Gnome apps under KDE and your KDE apps under Gnome. With the cost of hard drive space today, why not?

Re:time to port gnome! (1, Interesting)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448901)

Furthermore, both Gnome and KDE could share many core underlying technologies if this happened.

If I recall, Gnome was created because people didn't feel the Qt/KDE license was "Free" enough. Oddly enough, Qt and KDE are the "free" ones now, where as Gnome is now firmly entrenched with Mono.

Even Mark Shuttleworth has said there is something to said for a Gnome built on Qt. It would be faster, use less memory, and they could start on it tomorrow. Redesigning a GTK+ 3.0 from the ground up would take time, and slow down Gnome.

Qt ships with a Clearlooks engine. Please, please someone make this happen.

Re:time to port gnome! (4, Insightful)

AlXtreme (223728) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448445)

When QT4 became available under the GPL on all 4 major platforms- Windows/BSD/Linux/OSX the argument for GTK was weak. Now, I'd argue its virtually non-existent.

The argument was primarily a licensing one: LGPL versus GPL. Going for GTK+ because it was LGPL wasn't a weak argument.

With both QT and GTK+ being LGPL, the argument will be about toolkit quality, third-party support and language experience (C++ versus C). This is a much more useful comparison, and as a developer well-versed in GTK+ I'm looking forward to using both.

From QT4.5 onwards, the best tool for the job wins. Thanks Nokia!

More.. (4, Funny)

Thyamine (531612) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448153)

FYI: This article needs more acronyms. STAT. ASAP.

Ars Technica report (5, Informative)

Eukariote (881204) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448161)

Re:Ars Technica report (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448407)

And there is another analysis of the implications of the lgpl at

It's official... (5, Funny)

sznupi (719324) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448179) reason for Gnome to exist anymore! ;)

Why? (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448313)

Did Netcraft confirm it? Or is it MS that is trying to do that?

Re:It's official... (1)

bartok (111886) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448529)

Correct me if I'm wrong (and I hope I am) but since KDE and it's libraries is based on the GPL'ed version of QT, it is itself GPL'ed, which means that you need to GPL your code is you want your app to integrate with KDE..????????

Re:It's official... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448641)

Correct me if I'm wrong (and I hope I am) but since KDE and it's libraries is based on the GPL'ed version of QT, it is itself GPL'ed, which means that you need to GPL your code is you want your app to integrate with KDE..????????

The KDE libraries have always been LGPL.
Read [] for details.

Let Joy Be Unconfined (5, Funny)

netpixie (155816) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448191)

Whilst being very good at code and generally geekery, Trolltech are total rubbish at the support game, leaving paying developers (i.e. me a few years ago) feeling massively shafted when being told "here's the code, fix it yourself". WTF am I paying for If I have to not only find your bugs, but fix them as well?

Now everything is back as it should be - free code and no support, the way God intended.

It's not great news for everyone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448193)

It's great news for everyone, except for Trolltech. Good luck paying the bills, or hiring new developers, when your revenue stream goes away.

Re:It's not great news for everyone (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448275)

Ummm...I think Nokia, who now owns Trolltech, will be paying their bills.

Hurrah (5, Insightful)

caluml (551744) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448203)

Well, thank heavens for that. Hopefully now the horrible, oldfashioned looking, bad file-selecting-dialogs GTK will slowly disappear. The number of times I've had to select something in /usr/bin, and have started to type /usr/bin only to have it try and go to /usr/sr or some nastiness.

Wierd... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448209)

It's not every day that a cross-platform GUI framework suddenly turns into (becomes) a licence...

Large uptick in Qt usage? (4, Interesting)

Mad Merlin (837387) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448243)

The only complaint I've seen before about Qt is that it's too expensive for proprietary apps, and that's not an issue anymore. I won't be surprised to see a large uptick in Qt usage now, and that's a big plus for cross platform apps, as Qt is quite portable.

Re:Large uptick in Qt usage? (4, Interesting)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448399)

The only complaint I've seen before about Qt is that it's too expensive for proprietary apps

Then you've not been listening. Many don't like the noteworthy long start up times of Qt apps compared to say Gtk. Many don't like the need for obtuse tools like SIP. I know for a while they were working to address the long start up times I've not followed where that went. Perhaps it's no longer an issue.

Frankly, the API of Qt make Gtk look like a pile of vomit, but simple fact is, Qt is not the perfect GUI programming environment.

Re:Large uptick in Qt usage? (5, Informative)

vurian (645456) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448557)

Nothing human is perfect. However, having used GTK, wxWidgets, XForms, V, Motif, MFC, Borland VCL, Visual Basic, Swing, AWT, GNUStep and Qt, I have to say that Qt beats the others consistently in look & feel, ease of development, clarity of documentation, orthogonality of API and breadth of features. Not to mention cross-platformity :-) Plus, the tools, like Designer, Linguist, Creator and Assistant are top-notch.

Re:Large uptick in Qt usage? (3, Informative)

arendjr (673589) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448725)

Then you've not been listening. Many don't like the noteworthy long start up times of Qt apps compared to say Gtk.

Long start-up times have been fixed ever since Qt4 was released quite a while ago.

Many don't like the need for obtuse tools like SIP.

I've never used SIP myself, but it's that tool for generating bindings for other languages, right? So that's only required if you're generating your own bindings. And even then I fail to see how that's worse than writing the bindings by hand...

Re:Large uptick in Qt usage? (1)

siride (974284) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448771)

Qt apps start up pretty damn fast for me. I can't really tell a difference between Qt and GTK+ start up times, honestly. Using "time gedit" and "time kedit" and then clicking the close button as fast as I can yields nearly equal times, at about half a second.

Re:Large uptick in Qt usage? (3, Interesting)

IceFox (18179) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448943)

On the startup issue I think it was many times applications and not Qt that were slow. For Arora ( [] ) I spent time making it startup very quick. I wanted to be able to launch the browser from nothing whenever I clicked on a link. Feel free to check it out yourself and see how fast startup can be. Qt 4.5 has improved performance across the board and no doubt some of that will help on startup also.

Re:Large uptick in Qt usage? (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448853)

To expensive? It seemed fair to me. My company bought it. I just hope they keep selling it. LGPL means that you can not legally statically link it in a close program. That can actually be pretty handy at times.

Wow, great news (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448285)

Over the years I have said many times that TrollTech should have lowered their prices considering things like the Apple Developer's kit and MSDN are significantly cheaper for more functionality.

I have been in need of a good GUI toolkit for years. I have used just about all of them but for my own projects I either use the native toolkit of the OS I'm working on or FLTK for cross-platform stuff. Qt is much more functional than FLTK though with all their SQL and other utility classes. This is really cool. I bet Qt is now going to become the defacto GUI toolkit for everything.

I wonder how long until someone makes a Qt version of GNOME (ha, I can't imagine how much work that would take). You could start with making a Qt version of The GIMP.

Re:Wow, great news (5, Informative)

sucker_muts (776572) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448915)

You could start with making a Qt version of The GIMP.

A lot of people don't know this, but GTK stands for 'The GIMP Toolkit', and Gnome used this toolkit. Not the other way around! :-) []

NetCraft Confirms It, GNOME is Dead! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448331)


Die Gnome (3, Interesting)

kenp2002 (545495) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448361)

Perhaps now we can finally get enough momentum to end this Gnome\KDE battle and get KDE to win so we can settle on ONE desktop environment so we can get back to writing 40 different window managers.

QT + KDE = 1 Desktop Standard Linux (hell even Windows) folk can get behind.

Gnome + KDE = Goblin Desktop (You can thank me for coming up with that name

Merge the teams, move forward with KDE and lets get Linux on the desktop in earnest.

Yeah but KDE doesn't work. (-1, Flamebait)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448575)

Merge the teams, move forward with KDE and lets get Linux on the desktop in earnest.

Over my dead body. I can't stand KDE 4.0. It was nice under KDE 3.5 but KDE 4.0 just flat out didn't work well enough for me, broke my installation, screwed up my kernel, and you want me to go and do this again? I think it will be nice to run Qt applications under Gnome, which I can do just fine, while the KDE people go off into plasma la-la land.

The only reason I really liked KDE was because of KDevelop for C++, but KDevelop is languishing these days and NetBeans 6.5 seems just as good for C++ as KDevelop ever did.

Re:Yeah but KDE doesn't work. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448791)

screwed up my kernel

How did KDE screwed up your kernel?

Re:Yeah but KDE doesn't work. (1)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448859)

Have you tried anything more recent than 4.0? Things have improved A LOT since then. Hell, we are almost at 4.2 already, 4.1 is nearly just as featureful as the 3.5.x line ever was.

Also, I really cannot see any way that KDE could ever "screw up your kernel". Firstly, your kernel image should never be writable to anyone but root (and if you are running KDE as root we need to have a talk...). Secondly, even if the kernel image was writable, KDE shouldn't touch it unless you explicitly tell it to do something. My guess is your system was already messed up to begin with.

Re:Yeah but KDE doesn't work. (3, Informative)

Bwian_of_Nazareth (827437) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448917)

Try comparing KDE 3.5 to KDE 4.2... no, seriously, if you liked KDE, give it another try. KDE has come a long way from 4.0 to 4.2. Many things are much more polished and the whole experience is now very nice (obviously, YMMV). The only thing I am still missing is the printing infrastructure of KDE 3.5.

Re:Yeah but KDE doesn't work. (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448977)

I'm curious how KDE screwed up your kernel.

BTW, what distro are you running, and what version of KDE 4.x did you run?

I've long been seen as a critic of the KDE 4.x branch, but there has been some massive progress moving towards 4.2, which comes out this month.

I highly recommend the openSUSE packages specifically.

Some distros had no clue how to build and package KDE 4 properly.

That would be a disaster (4, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448611)

Think about Xfree. it was basically a closed monopoly. Then X11 grabbed it and opened it up further. Has it improved things? Absolutely. Basically, we NEED competition. GNOME is good competition, vs. say MS's form of competition (involving lots of dirty tricks and legal maneuvers).

Re:That would be a disaster (1)

siride (974284) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448895)

There's no competition between XFree86 and because XFree86 is effectively dead. There still is a monopoly on X, but they have a more open development process, which is why things are proceeding at a faster pace now.

Re:Die Gnome (1)

Cthefuture (665326) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448757)

I don't think so. GNOME is more that a GUI toolkit and as a developer I much prefer many of the GNOME API's over KDE. I have always hated Gtk+ though. Switching GNOME to use Qt would make more sense than ditching all the other excellent GNOME stuff.

Re:Die Gnome (4, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448929)

I really like Gnome better than KDE. You can run QT applications under Gnome just fine.
What I wonder is if we could see OpenOffice or Mozilla move to QT for the widgets :)

I'm not a copyright lawyer (1)

windsurfer619 (958212) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448393)

Could someone summarise the difference between the LGPL and the GPL? Thanks.

Re:I'm not a copyright lawyer (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448451)

Could someone summarise the difference between the LGPL and the GPL? Thanks.

LGPL allows closed-source programs to link with the library in question.

Re:I'm not a copyright lawyer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448457)

GPL: Not as in Free Beer
LGPL: Free Beer, but you can't change the recipe.

Re:I'm not a copyright lawyer (2, Informative)

Constantine XVI (880691) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448467)

If you have a piece of GPL code in your program, all of the program must be GPL. LGPL only applies to the LGPL code and any changes you make to it (your original code can be under any license)

Re:I'm not a copyright lawyer (1)

JohnFluxx (413620) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448533)

A proprietary (closed-sourced) program cannot use a GPL'ed library. So previously you couldn't write a closed-sourced program with the GPL'ed version of Qt.

But now you can.

Re:I'm not a copyright lawyer (1, Troll)

torstenvl (769732) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448741)

A BSD-licensed program cannot use a GPL'd library, either. GPL is license-incompatible with everything else, not just closed-source.

Re:I'm not a copyright lawyer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448795)

From Wikipedia []

The main difference between the GPL and the LGPL is that the latter can be linked to (in the case of a library, 'used by') a non-(L)GPLed program, which may be free software or proprietary software.[1] This non-(L)GPLed program can then be distributed under any chosen terms if it is not a derivative work.

A GUI for MySQL? (-1)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448397)

Does this mean that we're likely to have an Access like GUI to MySQL?

For those who do not know, Access is just an interface to Microsoft's Jet DB engine. MySQL does not have anything that even comes close to Access' functionality.

I need this.

Re:A GUI for MySQL? (4, Funny)

hobbit (5915) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448571)

At last! Qt has gone LGPL! The final obstacle to our creating a front-end for MySQL has been removed!

What on earth are you talking about?

Re:A GUI for MySQL? (1)

vurian (645456) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448603)

I don't either, but he might take a look at kexi [] ...

Excellent news! (3, Interesting)

apodyopsis (1048476) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448403)

Excellent news!

And a sensible move - the best way for any technology to become a standard (defacto or otherwise) is for it to be freely available and demonstrably good.

Now this is both we can predict swift adoption of it. Some firms may view Linux as a hobby, but even that is changing - my new job I started last week has two Ubuntu PCs in this very room I am typing from.

Way to go, Nokia! (4, Insightful)

Dexter77 (442723) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448479)

I love to see when a company understands that giving something away they will get ten times more in return. And nowadays that happens too rarely.

For a while it seemed that Nokia is about to lose to its competitors, because of Symbian and bad software. This will totally remedy it. I've also heard from Nokia insiders that they're actively dumping everything related to Symbian. It won't take more than couple of years and all their phones use Qt.

Seeing how well Apple has been selling iPhone applications, I can only imagine the potential Qt phones have in future. With Symbian that just wasn't possible, it was a total nightmare for the developers.

Re:Way to go, Nokia! (1)

hweimer (709734) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448691)

I love to see when a company understands that giving something away they will get ten times more in return. And nowadays that happens too rarely.

Aren't you confusing something here? This move is nothing but a reward for companies choosing not to give anything to others.

QT/GTK (1)

StuffMaster (412029) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448499)

I actually like GTK Windows apps better than native ones! Smaller dialogs are usually resizable, which is something Windows (at least XP and earlier) does horribly wrong. Options dialogs also often don't disable the main window, another thing Windows sucks at.

Hopefully QT will bring more windowing goodness to Windows (if it hasn't already).

Kills any idea of using Qt in our products (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448511)

A couple years ago, we were discussing using Qt for our desktop applications (at a well known scientific software house) as we needed a cross-platform framework and I have a couple years experience writing cross-platform (Mac+Windows) applications in Qt. We didn't, but it was a viable option, perhaps one we should have taken.

However, the company has a strict policy of no LGPL or GPL software. Nothing more restrictive than BSD or Apache when it comes to using free software. So, any talk of using Qt would have been a non-starter.

Re:Kills any idea of using Qt in our products (1)

vurian (645456) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448653)

I'm curious: what did your company choose? Homegrown?

Re:Kills any idea of using Qt in our products (5, Insightful)

oever (233119) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448719)

So buy a commercial Qt license. These are still available have no GPL/LGPL in them.

It's good news, but is it too late? (1)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448523)

I mean, the need for GUI toolkits that are portable was a void that Qt was early to fill, but now, there's a lot of choices out there, and I think those choices might have undermined Trolltech's business post Nokia purchase. Like, 5k was a good thing to pay when there were no portable frameworks, but, there are plenty of them out there.

First off, there's Java. As the old saying goes, if you want an application framework that does everything, maybe C++ isn't your language. Java is portable, has several very good IDEs for it, from NetBeans 6.5 is nice and I think JBuilder is actually good as well.

For C++, wxWidgets is actually pretty impressive and it increasingly has GUI designers that you can use. Then, there is the C++ GTK toolkit, which is out there. And then, there's any other number of frameworks that are a bit less tried and true. And, honestly, C++0x is going to have so many changes to it, that, you almost have to wonder how much a good legacy C++ codebase is actually worth. Qt was born in an era when even templates didn't work right, and now, C++ is fairly mature, C++0x builds on that, and, you almost have to wonder, if the U/I toolkits don't need to be rethought in terms of modern things like STL under C++0x, new closure features coming, and so forth.

Re:It's good news, but is it too late? (5, Informative)

ardor (673957) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448675)

Qt beats wxWidgets by a wide margin. The API is much cleaner, documentation is a lot better, and wxWidgets has nothing like QGraphicsView (actually, *no* toolkit out there has anything like this).

You are right that Qt uses very umm... baroque C++, but the fact is that it is a very good toolkit, the best opensource one out there. Using new features don't guarantee a top result, and vice versa.

PyQt? (4, Interesting)

robot_love (1089921) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448527)

I wonder what will happen to PyQt? They have traditionally offered the same licensing as Trolltech, but at a much cheaper rate. I'm curious to know what Qt's change to the LGPL will mean to them.

Re:PyQt? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448855)

Maybe nothing? They can stay GPL/Commercial just fine.

Finally! (3, Interesting)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448547)

I considered QT when I was looking for a good GUI for an open source project I was considering, but ended up rejecting it on licensing agreements. It has actually gotten better licensing twice since then, and now I would actually choose it.

That project, sadly, never happened because I never found a GUI toolkit I thought would do what I needed. How many other projects were similarly stalled like this?

This is indeed good news.

KDE is a perfect cross-platform environment (4, Informative)

oever (233119) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448589)

One year after Nokia bought Trolltech [] , they've released Qt as LGPL. This positions Qt and KDE in an excellent position for cross-platform application development for FOSS *and* commercial projects. KDE libraries were already licensed under LGPL. This means the entire stack is now LGPL.

In the mean-time, Qt Creator, an IDE for developing Qt applications, has been announced. This will be all you need to write cross-platform applications with Qt.

Qt Jambi (java bindings for Qt) will also available under LGPL. Qyoto (mono bindings) and the other bindings (Perl, Python, Ruby) will be able to make releases under LGPL now.

These are exciting times!

Wait, what? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448639)


Trolls actually develop software?

No copyright assignent (2, Insightful)

dfdashh (1060546) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448693)

From arstechnica [] :

To further reduce the barrier to participation, Nokia plans to accept code from contributors without requiring copyright assignment.

If they do what this article suggests they will, this is a big step towards better code and community involvement. Go Qt, go!

Jump onboard Firefox and Adobe! (4, Interesting)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448699)

With this development, I hope Firefox and Adobe developers will jump on I would also like to see the folks at on board the QT bandwagon as well. The interfaces I see on Openoffice and Adobe's PDF reader would look better with QT in my opinion.

Very nice! It's death of RIA! (1)

codedj (981633) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448705)

Very nice move!

This also means serious damage to RIA aproach too. Without QT, it was very difficult to create cross-platform apps (running on OSX, Linux and Windows).

Java was an option, but too few people used it for small apps like shareware utilities.

RIA was an option, but their are immature and do not allow to implement a lot of things.

Gtk was another ugly option.

Also running web server locally (e.g. with web server for CD and USB drives [] ) was elegant option for some cases when UI is rendered by web browser and backend is implemented using server-side programming language like php or python running locally.

Now it seems a lot of shareware authors will start using QT even for developing Windows-only apps. This means a lot of new apps that are stable and cheaper to develop will enter the market soon. Hopefully most of those apps will probably be ported to OSX (and even Linux) by their authors afterwards.

Re:Very nice! It's death of RIA! (1)

vurian (645456) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448737)

And don't forget that Qt+QtWebkit is a very good choice for a cross-platform RIA application -- it's what we're doing at work and it's giving us a chance to get the best of two rolds.

Re:Very nice! It's death of RIA! (2, Informative)

Yosho (135835) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448809)

Um, wxWidgets [] has been around for many years, and it can be used to write decent-looking GUIs for OS X, Windows, Linux, and many more operating systems.

While I think Qt's API is a bit nicer, it was already pretty easy to make cross-platform GUIs.

ARGH! Just migrated to CMake + added Wx support :( (1)

QX-Mat (460729) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448773)


I have spent the last few days migrating from QMake to CMake and adding a WxWidgets GUI to my project.


The CMake stuff is useful (qmake needs some test scripting a la autoconf) because i can use it for library discovery, but the Wx GUI is now pointless.


Implications of LGPL for Qt Developers (1)

Jeff Tranter (73306) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448783)

ICS, Qt Software's largest consulting partner, has a whitepaper on their web site at that talks about the implications of Qt being available under the LGPL. This helps make sense of what it will mean to developers.

Great news (0, Flamebait)

squoozer (730327) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448805)

While competition is generally a good thing I think the fight between Gnome and KDE has seriously hampered the adoption of Linux on the desktop (even if there hadn't been a fight I don't think we would see widespread Linux use on the Desktop but it would be greater than it is). The problem was that they were both good, for different reasons, and both had a good developer base the end result of which was a battle neither side could really win and we all lost from.

While I would hate to see Gnome consigned to the dustbin I think it's about time they gave up and admitted that KDE has won (flame away). I admit that KDE isn't perfect, far from it, but KDE4+ is streets ahead of Gnome now and the big hurdle to widespread use by companies has now vanished.

There are GPL GUIs for MySQL available now... (1)

maxfresh (1435479) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448883)

Such as HeidiSQL [] . It's a pretty good GPL graphical front end for MySQL written in Delphi. It's got a couple of bugs, but nothing show stopping that I've come across.

GTK is not the target... (5, Interesting)

Saint Fnordius (456567) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448939)

I have a hunch Nokia is looking at XCode and Apple instead. After all, the main battle for them is in the mobile market, and Apple made a big deal about the iPhone being based on OS X. So this is a bid to win over the talented developers.

QT is available on more platforms, true, and it always has been. Still, XCode was free for anyone with a Mac, and the developer kits for the iPhone only required that you own a Mac and that you registered as a developer.

2009 on teh desktop (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26448971)

1991-2008 "on teh desktop".

Linux. Failing for 17 years. Windows XPSEVEN2000VISTANTSP9001 Millenium Edition for the win.

Go on mod me down bury brigade. -1, butthurt (google takeittux.jpg [] ).

congratulations to Nokia (1, Insightful)

speedtux (1307149) | more than 5 years ago | (#26448975)

With this, Nokia has removed a major problem for KDE, Qt, and the open source community. The decision by the KDE developers to adopt Qt under its original license was stupid and has done a lot of damage to desktop Linux. Thanks to Nokia for finally solving this problem.

However, not all is well. Personally, I don't like either KDE or Qt particularly from a technical point of view. Qt programming in C++ is a lot nicer than Gnome programming in C. But Gnome bindings to Python and C# are excellent and have good tools support, and that's probably what matters more these days. And if you are silly enough to want to do GUI programming in C++, you can use Gtkmm.

All things considered, I'll stick with Gnome anyway.

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