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Open Source Licensing

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#1 StankDawg


    same old Dawg, no new tricks

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Posted 05 May 2003 - 07:25 AM

This was mentioned in another thread so I thought I would post it.

What You Need to Know

Whether you produce open-source software or just use it to get your
job done, keeping track of the legal permissions and restrictions
specified by each different license can be a big hassle--and could
get you in trouble if you're not careful. To help you keep things
in order, here's a quick review of some of the more popular open- source licenses and their most notable features:

Artistic License
 - The source code of programs under this license
   must be made available to anyone who requests it.
 - Aggregate distributions of more than one program can be sold.
 - Derivative works need not be under the same license
   but must be "freely available," as defined in the license.
 - Linking with proprietary software is permitted as long
   as it is through function calls.

Apache License
 - Essentially no restrictions except that redistributions
   must contain the copyright notice.

GNU General Public License (GPL)
 - Source code must be made available.
 - Users may make copies and/or redistribute the software.
 - Distributors can charge for the software.
 - Derivative works must be distributed under the same license.
 - Any software, including the libraries, can't be linked
   with proprietary software.

GNU Library General Public License (LGPL)
 - Software can be linked with proprietary software.
 - All other items are the same as the standard GPL.

Mozilla Public License
 - Source code must be made available.
 - Derivative works must be distributed under the
   same license.
 - The license author, Bruce Perens, actually recommends
   that people not use this license for their own projects
   because it was designed for Netscape, for a "specific
   business situation."

Original BSD License
 - Any advertising of products based on this license must
   acknowledge the authors (the University of California).

Public Domain
 - This is not truly a license, but rather the
   complete absence of one, since the author has
   explicitly surrendered all rights or the rights have
 - You may do with this product as you wish, including
   license your own version of it under your name.

X License
 - The advertising clause from the original BSD license
   no longer applies.

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