Clarifying the GnuPG License

Robert J. Hansen rjh at
Sun Jun 16 05:46:00 CEST 2013

On 6/15/2013 6:50 PM, John Clizbe wrote:
> Licensing was discussed when we considered bundling GnuPG. It had
> little to do with the decision not to bundle, AIR.

I can confirm this.  According to my recollection, the argument was "all
right, so what *shouldn't* we bundle, then?"  Once you bundle GnuPG with
Enigmail you have to take responsibility for both packages.  And then
people will ask, "well, why don't you release your own Thunderbird for
[insert my OS here] that has Enigmail and GnuPG preconfigured?"

Some projects (GPGTools) pride themselves on doing just this, on
creating a single installer that drops everything onto your system in a
preconfigured state.  It works for them and we're happy it works for
them.  But given the perpetual shortage of developer time on Enigmail,
and the limited support staff... it doesn't make sense for us.

What a lot of people don't recognize: Enigmail is written by only one
guy -- Patrick Brunschwig.  He has a full-time job and hacks on Enigmail
in his spare time.  That places some severe constraints on the size of
the engineering we can do.

More information about the Gnupg-users mailing list