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GNAT GPL Edition FAQ

About the GNAT Technology

  • What is the GNAT Technology?
  • What is GNAT?
  • What are the supplemental GNAT Technologies?
  • How can I obtain the GNAT Technology?

About the different versions of GNAT

  • What is GNAT Pro?
  • What is the GNAT Academic Program?
  • What is the GNAT GPL Edition?

Licensing

  • What is the license of GNAT Pro?
  • What is the license of the GNAT GPL Edition?
  • I would like to release my software under the ABC license, which is incompatible with the GPL. What should I do?
  • I would like to release my software under the XYZ license, which is a Free Software license according to the FSF, but is incompatible with the GPL. What should I do?

About AdaCore and the GNAT Technology

  • Who is behind the GNAT Technology?
  • Who maintains and distributes the GNAT Technology?
  • Does AdaCore provide free-of-charge versions of the GNAT Technology?
  • Why does AdaCore provide versions of the GNAT Technology free-of-charge?
  • What is the relationship of AdaCore with the FSF?
  • What is the relationship of the GNAT compiler and GCC?

About other versions of GNAT

  • Are there versions of GNAT available elsewhere?
  • What is the license of other versions of the GNAT compiler?

About the GNAT Technology

What is the GNAT Technology?
The GNAT Technology consists of GNAT, the complete development environment for Ada 95 and Ada 2005, as well as a number of supplemental technologies for tools, GUI, Web, or distributed systems development.

What is GNAT?
GNAT is the complete development environment for Ada 95 and Ada 2005. Based on GNU technology, GNAT comprises a compiler, a source-level debugger, a set of supplemental libraries and bindings, and a comprehensive toolset integrated in the GNAT Programming Studio (GPS) IDE.

Distributed with complete source code, two versions of GNAT are available: GNAT Pro for commercial/ industrial use and GNAT GPL Edition for Academia and Free Software development.

What are the supplemental GNAT Technologies?
The GNAT Technology includes the implemetation of the ASIS standard (Ada Semantic Interface Specification), GtkAda to build portable and efficient GUIs in Ada, AWS (Ada Web Server) the framework to develop Web-based applications in Ada, the XML/Ada library to process XML streams in Ada, GLADE to develop distributed applications following the Ada Distributed Systems Annex standards, and PolyORB to develop distributed applications following the CORBA standard.

How can I obtain the GNAT Technology?
If you want to use the GNAT Technology for a commercial, industrial, or military project, visit www.adacore.com or contact sales@adacore.com. Our sales team will provide more information on the GNAT Pro subscription package and will answer questions concerning pricing, licenses, and available platforms.

If you are a professor using Ada in your curriculum you should join the GNAT Academic Program by contacting gap-contact@adacore.com or visit the GNAT Academic Program for more information.

If you are a student, Free Software developer, or are simply interested in discovering the Ada programming language please continue to explore the Libre Site.

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About the different versions of GNAT

What is GNAT Pro?
GNAT Pro is the professional version of GNAT. It is used by industry and government customers worldwide in mission and safety-critical software systems ranging from real-time embedded applications to large-scale information management systems. GNAT Pro is available for a wide range of native and embedded platforms.

GNAT Pro is sold as a yearly subscription. The subscription provides customers with:

  • The GNAT Pro Ada 95 and Ada 2005 development environment with upgrades
  • GNAT Pro toolsuite support directly from the GNAT Pro developers
  • Online Ada consulting directly from AdaCore experts
  • A license guaranteeing that executables generated with GNAT Pro can be distributed under customer-specific terms and conditions.

What is the GNAT Academic Program?
The GNAT Academic Program is the package designed to give educators the development environment and support they need to teach Ada. It is available on GNU Linux, Mac OS X, Sparc Solaris, and Windows.

The GNAT Academic Program (GAP) and includes:

  • The GNAT GPL Ada (including Ada 2005) development environment
  • Toolsuite support and online Ada consulting for professors
  • A license suitable to develop Free Software.

GAP members have the possibility to share software, educational material, and have access to the tools of several AdaCore partners who make versions of their tools available to the academic community. More than 100 universities worldwide have now joined. For more information visit the GNAT Academic Program.

What is the GNAT GPL Edition?
As part of our commitment to the Ada community we provide for students and Free Software developers free-of-charge fully-featured releases of the GNAT Technology for GNU Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows. The GNAT GPL Edition consists of

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Licensing

What is the license of GNAT Pro?
The GNAT Pro tools are licensed under the GNU General Public License (GPL), while the GNAT Pro runtime and libraries are licensed under the GNAT Modified GPL (GMGPL). The GMGPL guarantees that *executables* generated by GNAT Pro can be distributed under customer-specific terms and conditions. Specifically, the GMGPL ensures that customers can generate proprietary, classified, or otherwise restricted executables.

What is the license of the GNAT GPL Edition?
Everything (tools, runtime, libraries) in the GNAT GPL Edition is licensed under the General Public License (GPL). This ensures that executables generated by the GNAT GPL Edition are Free Software and that source code is made available with the executables, giving the freedom to recepients to run, study, modify, adapt, and redistribute sources and executables under the terms of the GPL.

I would like to release my software under the ABC license, which is incompatible with the GPL. What should I do?
If the ABC license is a Free Software license according to the FSF, then read the following Q&A. If the ABC license is not a Free Software license then it is the intention of the GPL distribution of GNAT to restrict your freedom. For distribution of proprietary software, we suggest and recommend the use of GNAT Pro, which, while still being Free Software, comes with more liberal licensing permitting this kind of use.

I would like to release my software under the XYZ license, which is a Free Software license according to the FSF, but is incompatible with the GPL. What should I do?
The GNAT GPL Edition doesn’t limit in any way the license you use on your sources. If you are distributing sources only, no issue with respect to the license of GNAT GPL Edition arises. You or anyone who wants to build a binary can do so freely from these sources, using either the GNAT GPL compiler or any other suitable Ada compiler. If you want to *distribute* a binary of your program compiled with the compiler in the GNAT GPL Edition then *today* the binary must be licensed under the GPL. Note that you can still license a copy of your sources under the XYZ Free Software license of your choosing.

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About AdaCore and the GNAT Technology

Who is behind the GNAT Technology?
As a result of the Ada 9X effort, the Ada group created in 1980 at New York University (comprising many AdaCore founding members) received a grant from the DoD to develop an Ada 95 compiler to be made available as Free Software. This effort led to the birth of the GNAT Technology and subsequently gave rise to two sister companies: Ada Core Technologies in the United States and AdaCore in Europe (formerly called ACT Europe). Both companies now use the common name AdaCore and are behind the GNAT Technology.

Who maintains and distributes the GNAT Technology?
AdaCore – founded by the original GNAT developers – maintains and distributes the GNAT Technology, including GNAT Pro and the GNAT GPL Edition. The AdaCore team addresses issues concerning the technology and adds new features. Releases of various components of the GNAT Technology are made regularly to our professional, academic, and Free Software communities.

Does AdaCore provide free-of-charge versions of the GNAT Technology?
Although it does not have to, AdaCore makes free-of-charge GPL releases of its GNAT Technology. This site is dedicated to Free Software developers and was created nearly 5 years ago and is being updated regularly with new GPL-ed versions of the technology.

Why does AdaCore provide versions of the GNAT Technology free-of-charge?
We think Ada is one of the best programming-languages available today. We also think that GNAT is the best Ada 95 and Ada 2005 development environment available. Free-of-charge GPL releases of the GNAT Technology for GNU Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows enable developers to discover and use Ada 95 and Ada 2005 using the full technology straight from its developers.

What is the relationship of AdaCore with the FSF?
AdaCore is a corporate patron of the FSF. The GNAT Technology uses some components of the GNU project of the FSF. These components include GCC, the GNU Compiler Collection, and GDB, the GNU debugger.

What is the relationship of the GNAT compiler and GCC?
The GNAT compiler relies on the GCC back-end technology to generate code for a wide variety of platforms in native and cross configurations. GNAT compiler releases use a carefully selected FSF GCC source base with a set of AdaCore patches applied. Our patches are contributed back into the FSF tree along with snapshots of the sources of the GNAT compiler on a regular basis.

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About other versions of GNAT

Are there versions of GNAT available elsewhere?
There are other places where you can obtain partial versions of GNAT, typically consisting of the compiler. For instance the GNAT compiler can be obtained in source form from the Free Software Foundation (FSF). Other versions of the GNAT compiler exist (e.g. in GNU Linux distributions). AdaCore has no control over these and cannot guarantee their quality or suitability for a particular purpose. Most important you should ascertain the license and IPR (Intellectual Property Rights) guarantees from its provider.

What is the license of other versions of the GNAT compiler?
The license of other versions of the GNAT compiler, i.e. versions that are derived from AdaCore sources but that are not obtained directly from AdaCore, must be ascertained from the entity from which the other version of the GNAT compiler was obtained. As an example, the GNAT compiler for Ada and the G++ compiler for C++ obtained with the CygWin distribution downloaded free-of-charge from the internet come with the same license as the GNAT GPL Edition, that is the compiled programs must be Free Software distributed under the terms of the GNU GPL (see http://cygwin.com/licensing.html).

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