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GNUstep Base Library


The GNUstep Base Library is a library of general-purpose, non-graphical Objective C objects. For example, it includes classes for strings, object collections, byte streams, typed coders, invocations, notifications, notification dispatchers, moments in time, network ports, remote object messaging support (distributed objects), and event loops.

It provides functionality that aims to implement the non-graphical portion of the Apple's Cocoa frameworks (the Foundation library) which came from the OpenStep standard.

Initial reading

The file NEWS has the library's feature history.

The files INSTALL or GNUstep-HOWTO (from the web site) gives instructions for installing the library.


The GNUstep libraries and library resources are covered under the GNU Lesser Public License. This means you can use these libraries in any program (even non-free programs). If you distribute the libraries along with your program, you must make the improvements you have made to the libraries freely available. You should read the COPYING.LIB file for more information. All files in the 'Source', 'Headers', 'NSCharacterSets', 'NSTimeZones', and 'Resources' directories and subdirectories under this are covered under the LGPL.

GNUstep tools, test programs, and other files are covered under the GNU Public License. This means if you make changes to these programs, you cannot charge a fee, other than distribution fees, for others to use the program. You should read the COPYING file for more information. All files in the 'Documentation', 'Examples', 'Tools', 'config', and 'macosx' directories are covered under the GPL.

With GNUstep-Base, we strongly recommend the use of the ffcall libraries, which provides stack frame handling for NSInvocation and NSConnection. "Ffcall is under GNU GPL. As a special exception, if used in GNUstep or in derivate works of GNUstep, the included parts of ffcall are under GNU LGPL" (Text in quotes provided by the author of ffcall).

How can you help?

Give us feedback! Tell us what you like; tell us what you think could be better.

Please log bug reports on the GitHub issues page.

Happy hacking!

Copyright (C) 2005 Free Software Foundation

Copying and distribution of this file, with or without modification, are permitted in any medium without royalty provided the copyright notice and this notice are preserved.