Questions tagged [closed-source]

For questions about closed-source software and how it relates to open source.

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Why exactly is NirSoft's software not open source? [closed]

Apologies if this type of question isn't allowed here, but I am quite curious about this. If you don't know, NirSoft is some sort of dev that has created a lot of software for use on Windows primarily....
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6 votes
2 answers
528 views

Open source licenses and royalties

Many projects, e.g. GitLab, BitWarden, EasyRedmine, use open source software licenses. Their code is publicly available, and the services can be self-hosted. Of course they can charge users for ...
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  • 207
8 votes
3 answers
1k views

Maintaining open- and closed-source versions of same code

As an individual freelancer, I'm writing some code for my customer's commercial closed-source project. The customer don't mind me to open-source this code, but they would like the code to be available ...
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  • 374
2 votes
0 answers
45 views

System libraries and exceptions regarding closed source distribution

There are some specific usage examples I would like to learn, regarding of using some open source libraries inside a commercial closed source product(binary, executable). Most of the answers online ...
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5 votes
3 answers
106 views

Can I use an unmerged pull request to an Apache 2.0 project in my proprietary fork?

There's a project under Apache 2.0 which has an abondoned pull request. I plan to use this code, fix it and merge into my proprietary fork of the main project. This fork is a part of a bigger ...
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4 votes
1 answer
801 views

If I use a mobile app that fetches data from a website under GPLv2+ is the app also under GPL?

I am currently programming a mobile app that is not under the GPL. However, the mobile app correspond with a website that is under GPL Version 2 or higher. In my case the mobiel app send request via ...
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1 vote
1 answer
70 views

MIT License for a translation

There's a software called vnpy on github that's in chinese. We have a translated copy to english. The goal is to keep their MIT license but just for that code. We're wondering: Should we make a ...
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  • 13
0 votes
1 answer
205 views

Are the terms proprietary software and closed source software synonymous?

I think that when a software is proprietary, then its source code is "legally defended" and hence not released to the general public in any way. Are the terms proprietary software and closed ...
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  • 19
0 votes
2 answers
337 views

How to include licenses of dependencies in commercial closed-source proprietary software?

Our company is developing an enterprise application that is essentially a set of different applications (microservices). Some of these microservices are based on node.js while others are based on ...
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4 votes
2 answers
207 views

How to protect communities from devolving into "open source in name only"?

There are many open source communities that provide good and effective tools and ecosystems for their users. In fact, there is not doubt that the best programming tools available in this age, follow a ...
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0 votes
0 answers
200 views

Can the official MySQL connectors be used in a commercial closed-source backend?

The official Oracle MySQL connectors seem to correspond with these GitHub repositories: mysql-connector-cpp mysql-connector-nodejs mysql-connector-python ... They all contain a LICENSE.txt that ...
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3 votes
2 answers
493 views

How do you sell a hardware product that uses the linux kernel?

I would like to create a Linux based OS for a VR headset that I'm developing. From what I understand, the Linux kernel uses the GPL-2 license which allows for commercial use but it also requires you ...
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1 vote
1 answer
39 views

GPL in Plugin for a open source application

I am trying to do a feasibility study for doing a plugin that implements a 2D geometry solver in various programs. The solver is GPL v3. Some of the programs are GPL themselves but some are not, like ...
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  • 113
1 vote
1 answer
35 views

License compliance for a closed source client calling open source server interface to open source library

We have a large proprietary application, a portion of which is a collection of microservers written in Go. We're considering the following: Write a Go microserver, with a GPL license, on top of a ...
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1 vote
1 answer
120 views

Releasing code containing MIT library using all right reserved license?

For example, I have code int main() { myFunction(); MitCopyPastedFunction(); } where I have copied a section of code from a MIT licensed library. In this case, i want to release my project ...
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2 votes
0 answers
28 views

Crediting a library [duplicate]

I'm using a library for a commercial application, and I'm wondering how I credit that library. The library is using the BSD-3-Clause license, and my application is going to be closed source. Do I ...
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3 votes
2 answers
261 views

Using reverse-engineered closed protocol in open source software

The question is a partial derivative of this one: Someone open-sourced an un-open-source project Here is the situation: There is a device and a proprietary software to manage that device. They are ...
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1 vote
1 answer
44 views

Do I have the right to the bundle that generate by / dependent on open-source libraries?

I created a project with the following structure: The question is: Do I have the right to the BUNDLE where I do not want clients to resell the BUNDLE they have bought? Is it sufficient to include ...
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5 votes
1 answer
96 views

Does learning boilerplate code from a project with a restrictive license make my own work derivative?

I have an application I want to put my own license on. In order to get my application started, I wrestled with boilerplate code issues I was not able to find answers for online. When I tried launching ...
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2 votes
1 answer
217 views

Could the GPL "infect" my Code if the libraries I used violated the GPL?

Let's assume I use in my closed source a library A which is by the Author claimed as a non GPL license (e.g. MIT, LGPL or even a paid license). Now somebody finds out, that one of the used library in ...
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  • 141
4 votes
1 answer
413 views

Is Google's Chrome web browser truly open source?

I have been trying to understand if Google's Chrome web browser is truly open source. Some people claim that it is, while others claim that it integrates binary blobs for which the source is ...
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50 votes
4 answers
18k views

Someone open-sourced an un-open-source project

Someone (Person_A) is sharing an open source project (Project_A) on GitHub. The Project_A is a decompiled version of another project (Project_B). But the original Project_B is not open source, and ...
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  • 629
2 votes
1 answer
59 views

Which licence do I choose, publishing a previously closed-source product?

From 2001 thru 2019, a company "A" that I own and I am the CEO of with HQ in EU, had a commercial software product for sale on the international market. We issued perpetual per-site licences to what ...
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5 votes
1 answer
916 views

What license to use for GitHub repository containing trademark/copyright protected images?

I just can't seem to find an answer to this. Normally I assign MIT License to all of my GitHub repositories, but so far they have only included code that I have personally written. I think that MIT ...
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-2 votes
1 answer
63 views

closed source binary in Linux image

I've got question about following situation: if i have closed source binary and device with Linux, i want to sell this device with Linux and closed binary in its filesystem. Is it legal to keep source ...
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28 votes
4 answers
8k views

Can I use my own GPL'ed code in my closed source program?

Let's say that program A was made by me, with me being the sole copyright holder. If I license this program under the GPL-3.0, can I use that program in program B that is closed source?
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2 votes
1 answer
89 views

Usage of closed-source software loaded into GPL software as a plugin

I'm distributing a device (ARMv8 server) which runs GNU GPL licensed software. I've changed this software so that it is able to load any plugin in the form of *.so file. I've open-sourced this feature ...
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3 votes
2 answers
143 views

Using GLPv3 for open-source library modules that can be extended and linked by closed-source libraries and binaries

I'm developing a pretty big open-source project which will require multiple technology stacks. My hope is that this project will be primarily community-based, which means the community should be able ...
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  • 133
2 votes
1 answer
109 views

Can I sell closed source plugins that interface with a GPL v2 software which is open sourced? [duplicate]

Basically, I have an idea for some software based on an Open Sourced application. If I was to build an application based off of that, and sell my plugins, would this be a breach of terms? This is the ...
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1 vote
1 answer
343 views

Open source project on a closed source engine (Unity) with GPL covered data

There's a project called Endless Sky It's license for Source code is GPL, The license for Graphics is CC-BY, CC-BY-SA and Public Domain. The license for Data .txt files with content like this is ...
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2 votes
1 answer
147 views

Distributing GPLv2 code and ENTIRELY SEPARATE closed-source software (no interaction between them)

Do I have to GPL all software in a .deb package just because it contains some GPL(v2 in this case) code, even if these things have nothing to do with each other except being distributed in the same ...
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4 votes
1 answer
494 views

Use of GPL licensed driver in commercial project

In a commercial project for our customer, I would like to install a driver on all target machines. The driver is on sourceforge (http://com0com.sourceforge.net/). The website states that: The Null-...
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  • 143
1 vote
1 answer
116 views

exe using LGPLv3 lib: must I also ship the exe's object files?

If I ship a closed-source .exe that dynamically links to an LGPLv3 library (such as Qt), must I also ship the .obj files from which I built the .exe? This podcast at 34:30-36:00 claims so, and also ...
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2 votes
1 answer
130 views

What do I need the company I work for to do to open source a program I wrote for them?

I would like to open-source a program I wrote for my employer. As I understand it, this is a “work for hire” (at least in the United States) since I wrote the code for them and on their time. This ...
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  • 123
6 votes
1 answer
387 views

Use of closed-source library in LGPL library

I would like to open source my software library under the LGPL license. But I'm not sure if I'm allowed to use that license, as my library uses another library which is currently closed sourced. By ...
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  • 61
0 votes
1 answer
98 views

Can I change my project's license before release?

I started my project with the GPLv3 license, but I haven't released or made available any code related to it yet. As I move further along in my project, I am starting to realize that it is something I ...
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0 votes
1 answer
1k views

CDDL library and closed source application

I am working on a project that uses a C++ library licensed under CDDL v1.0. Ideally I would like to publish it commercially as well as keep it closed source (wouldn't mind open sourcing it but then it'...
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3 votes
1 answer
653 views

License to disallow distribution in closed source software, but allow exceptions made by owner?

Is there a license (similar to the GNU v3 software license) that forbids the usage of an open-source software in closed-source software, but except parties that receive approval by the original owner (...
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  • 133
3 votes
1 answer
68 views

Recreating assets from closed source projects

Recently I'm working on a game, where I have created some asset from closed source project. To be honest I actually re-created assets similar identical to hill climb. Now if I use those or I use ...
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3 votes
2 answers
715 views

Can a closed-source software be free

I saw some closed-source software (for Windows), which license explicitly allows to do everything with it, including disassembling, decompiling and modification, but no source is distributed, though ...
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  • 143
3 votes
2 answers
526 views

Can a copyleft, GPLv3 project be closed by its copyright holder?

Let's say a private company released a popular software product under a copyleft (GPLv3) license. It's business model was offering consulting services and premium features for a fee, which in turn ...
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5 votes
1 answer
316 views

Effect of 'download separately' on GPL linking

Suppose I have Java jar-files which I provide to my customers under a commercial closed-source license. But my jar-files depend on a few jar-files released under the GPLv2 (without any special GNU ...
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6 votes
1 answer
2k views

Using Qt Designer to create UI design for closed source application

Am I allowed to create a closed-source application using the LGPL licensing scheme for Qt if I use Qt Designer to generate its user interface? I originally thought this was possible until I saw this ...
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  • 171
4 votes
1 answer
182 views

What does it mean for a closed source project to have a permissive licence (CC BY-NC)?

Earlier today I was installing a small free program hosted on GitHub. The End-User License Agreement shown when installing had a few things, but what stood out was: [...] is licensed under a Creative ...
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  • 141
3 votes
2 answers
1k views

IPC between open-source and closed-source applications

We have two applications developed by two teams. One is open-source under GPL, another closed-source without any possibility to open the code. Also there's a requirement to implement some kind of API ...
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1 vote
2 answers
464 views

Redistributing 7-Zip Binaries with LGPL & BSD 3-clause License

We want to use 7Zip to extract the contents of the ISO file in our paid product. There is no other API free library available as of now that can unzip ISO files on all Windows platforms that we want ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
800 views

A question about closed-source software with GNU GSL for commercial and free-to-use cases

I plan to build a closed-source software with C++ language using GSL (GNU Scientific Library). This software is made by compiling my source codes into executable. By the way, my source codes use GSL ...
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  • 109
3 votes
1 answer
241 views

Subclassing, Unity, and the LGPL

I want to release a package on the Unity Asset Store. Based on this answer, it looks like the best option for my situation would be LGPLv3. However, after doing plenty of research, I've stumbled ...
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0 votes
1 answer
158 views

Can you change GPLv2 licensed software, but keep your new source closed?

If I were to make deep modifications to the Linux kernel, virtually make a 'new' kernel in a way, for my project, which is building my own operating system, (yes, I know, a lot of work, but hey, I'm ...
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1 vote
0 answers
436 views

libquadmath in binary code

I'm developing a small closed source library in C++ for a small company using gcc. For the numerics part I need 128bit floating point arithmetics. This leads gcc to pull in libquadmath. As far as I ...
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