I have written a bash script I would like to put under GPL v3. I've read the GNU documentation on How to Apply These Terms to Your New Programs and How to use GNU licenses for your own software. Still, I'm not quite sure what to put there and which artifacts are needed.

So far, I did the following:

  1. Put a file called COPYING (which contains the license) into the project folder
  2. At the beginning of my script, I attached the following to my script:

up is a bash function to simplify vertical file system navigation.

Copyright (C) 2012 Oliver Weiler

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see http://www.gnu.org/licenses/.

Is this all I have to do? Is putting the licence into a separate file actually needed, if the notice in the script file links to it?

1 Answer 1


Yeah, that's pretty much it. The separate file with the actual license isn't strictly needed, but then again, we're talking about copyright and legal matters dealing with the digital era. Nothing is strictly legal or illegal, and the whole field is an uncomfortable shade of gray where it depends on who you piss of, how good of a lawyer you both can afford, and what giants have tangential interests in the outcome.


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