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[ossig] MySQL - A quick question.

MySQL is released under GPL .  Now what does this means? 
If I were to use GPL version of MySQL in my commercial project how will it affect my company? 
What are the resrictions applied to it?
If I develop my commercial application using MySQL/C++ API, do I have to open source my software also?
I am asking these questions to answer my management when I propose to them open-source based solution building for our proprietry apps.  They are already aware that Linux is coming to the main stream as some of our customers are asking for Linux based solutions.