– The APSL is a license approved by the Free Software Foundation as a free software license. See here: http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/apsl.html (I know they remark that they discourage using it because it allows use in proprietary applications but if you ask me they are only being pedantic.)
It’s free-ish, but free-ish isn’t free. Not by dfsg standards, anyway, and that carries weight. If nothing else, it keeps firefly out of debian (and by extension, ubuntu, and any other distro that uses dfsg).
So, I don’t really see the problem with using Apple’s rendezvous/bonjour/mDNSResponder. Especially as it is available for many platforms. I understand you prefer not to link it in but it is THE zeroconf framework so one should be able to use it.
That’s what the dns_sd.h interface is — the dns_sd.h header is bsd licensed, and it allows one to link with a previously installed apple mdns.
Reading about howl I don’t see the point of why they made it even. A fork of Apple’s rendezvous/bonjour/mDNSResponder? What on earth were they thinking?
At the time, rendezvous didn’t do windows, and it didn’t have as wide platform support as howl. That’s about all I can think… I’d have a hard time defending it. 🙂
So a simple –enable-bonjour configure switch would be welcome.
That may be what the dns_sd.h switch will be.