radare2 is licensed under LGPLv3.
The LesserGPLv3 have the following features:
- Privative software (closed source/comercial) can link to it (dynamically).
- Privative/Commercial plugins can be developed for it.
- All modifications in the opensource part must be done public.
- This way, everyone can benefit from the commercial and opensource worlds.
For a sucessful real case of that LGPL see GStreamer.
If you don't want to have legal issues you'll have to understand how software licenses works.
It is important to note that not all plugins in r2 are under the same license, you'll find some pieces in GPL2, BSD, Apache, etc.
We are trying to shrink and squash all the GPL code as much as possible because of the following reasons.
- GPL is a viral license.
- You can only statically link GPL programs against them.
- You can't dynamically link privative apps with GPL libraries.
In case of doing a privative software that uses r2 as backend and you dont want to care about special builds or detailed license problems, I would recommend to use r2 via r2pipe and distribute r2 as a separate package for your privative app. This way the GPL viral will not be infect your software because there's no binary link between them, only a textual protocol via a pipe or socket.
The current parts that are under GPL and will be replaced or removed soon (old code is moved to the radare2-extras repository).
- Some exotic disassemblers
- GRUB (libr/fs) - partitions and filesystems
- GNU binutils disassemblers (almost replaced by Capstone)
- C++ demangler (from binutils)
Grepping for licenses in r_asm plugins
$ rasm2 -L | grep GPL | grep -v LGPL _dA_ 16 32 arc GPL3 Argonaut RISC Core adA_ 16 32 64 arm.gnu GPL3 Acorn RISC Machine _dA_ 16 32 avr GPL AVR Atmel _dAe 32 cris GPL3 Axis Comm. 32-bit adAe 32 64 mips.gnu GPL3 MIPS CPU _dAe 32 nios2 GPL3 NIOS II _dA_ 32 64 ppc.gnu GPL3 PowerPC _dA_ 32 sh GPL3 SuperH-4 CPU _dA_ 32 64 sparc.gnu GPL3 Scalable Proc Arch ad__ 32 x86.olly GPL2 OllyDBG X86 Disasm
If you want to ship r2 in your privative product remember to remove all the GPL plugins from your build using a custom
plugins.cfg or passing it to
If you have any other question about licenses, I would recommend you to contact the Free Software Foundation or just drop me an email.