I have project 'P' which will be commercially used in the future (it's an android app). It uses service 'S' source files and this service is written with Apache License 2.0. The problem is I need to make changes in S-files.

As I understood, If my project was open-source, I would need to:

  1. Retain copyright and license preamble in every S-file.
  2. In case of changes made in S-file mention it with something like 'Modifications copyright (C) 2020 <your company/name>'
  3. Add Apache license description in LICENSE file.
  4. If there's any NOTICE files in S, then also add this NOTICE at the root directory of your repository.
  5. Add Apache license description, copyright and NOTICE content in UI (either by about/any other different approach).

Am I right? If yes, since my project's source code is closed, is it enough to execute only the 5th step?

1 Answer 1


If you incorporate files from S, with or without modification, in P, then your 5 steps are correct.

As long as the source code of P is not distributed, steps 1 to 4 are only visible to you and nobody can tell if you complied with them or not. I would recommend you do them anyway. Those steps are not really all that hard to comply with and you can't forget to do them if someday someone decides to make P open source after all.

  • Actually only one of 4 and 5 is required.
    – Max Xiong
    Commented Jan 22, 2021 at 1:52

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