Long story made short: Have a python based repo in Github currently. It relies on some external software in its compiled/executable form as a simple popen call. Currently it relies on the user to manually include those. Wondering if it is acceptable in some way to just include these from the getgo into my repo? This other software is already open source under an MIT license and has its own Github repo.

A previous incarnation of my project started by someone else already did this and used the Git LFS feature. This functioned perfectly fine but for some reason at the time that I can't explain I wasn't quite happy with binary code especially from another repo being included. I'm now second guessing that if only for ease of end user access just cloning a single repo and being done. Additionally, that particular external software often changes enough between versions that my code needs to be updated to handle it. So in a way it would make more sense to maintain the currently supported version in-repo.


1 Answer 1


If the license on the third-party code allows you to re-distribute the binary (and all open-source licenses do allow that), then there is no (legal) reason not to include that binary in your repository.

When you include third-party code in binary form in your repository, you need to follow the requirements that the license places on you for distributing the binary. For the MIT license, that means that you need to have a copy of the license text (unless the binary can reproduce the license itself). For other licenses it could mean that you indicate where the source code for that particular binary can be obtained.

In any case, it is a nice gesture of goodwill to indicate which project (with a link) the binary came from.

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