All Questions

38
votes
3answers
2k views

What can/should I do when I see a violation to GPL restrictions?

Some years ago, I was working on a software company that used some copyrighted JAR dependencies that they had bought from a medium-size obscure private company for a very expensive price. After some ...
14
votes
7answers
972 views

How can I find usage statistics for an open source project?

Put simply, is there any way to find out how widely used a given open source project is? Say, for example, I am looking for a serialization library. I can imagine various metrics to help choose ...
26
votes
4answers
1k views

If I include some GPL code in my project, can I release it as BSD?

I have scientific software that I would like to release under the BSD 3-clause licence, but it includes some old code that was released under GPL. Can I still package it all and release as BSD?
48
votes
5answers
3k views

How can a project be relicensed?

I've found out that the license I picked for my project does not quite do what I wanted it do (bad research). Now I want to change the license. Is it as simple as changing the LICENSE.txt in the root?...
2
votes
0answers
44 views

What should I look for in a platform to make my project easy to edit? [closed]

To clarify, since I don't know if "platform" is the right word: I'm talking about things like GitHub or the late Google Code. What features should I look for in a code publishing platform so that ...
15
votes
1answer
205 views

What license must I use on a commercial version of an open source project?

Suppose I have published a project under the Apache 2.0 (or similarly permissive license). Internally I have another version of the same project, which provides significantly extended functionality ...
20
votes
3answers
473 views

What are the advantages of adding a Contributor License Agreement to a project?

Some projects have a Contributor License Agreement (as example the CLA of the Apache foundation). What is it for? What are the consequences when I don't have one?
23
votes
4answers
4k views

What's the difference between permissive and copyleft licenses?

I've heard both terms thrown around, but I'm a bit unclear as to how the licenses differ. How is copyleft different to a permissive license? Is copyleft just the standard for open source licenses?
19
votes
4answers
302 views

Very permissive license

I'm about to launch my current project as Open Source. People should feel free to do with the code whatever they want and luckily there are quite a few licensing options to choose from. So I'm ...
26
votes
5answers
308 views

How do I stop people from opening questions in the issue tracker?

I'm a collaborator in a pretty popular open source project hosted on GitHub. We have a problem where people constantly show up in the issue tracker and post questions about the library. Dealing with ...
33
votes
2answers
689 views

Can I change the caps to lowercase in licenses?

The well-known MIT (or "X11/MIT" license reads): Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), ...
17
votes
2answers
645 views

When should I consider creating a private fork of a suitably licensed project for commercial use?

Suppose I am developing a commercial product, but one heavily based on open source software. Further suppose one of the open source projects I use has a permissive license (such as Apache 2). At some ...
9
votes
3answers
216 views

How do I structure my project in an inviting way? [closed]

When I work on new libraries and tools I potentially would like them to get contributors and activity. However, I'm not sure what I could to in order to encourage more participation. As a project ...
10
votes
1answer
261 views

How can I recover content from an open source project host that has shut down?

Codehaus shut down earlier this year. Many projects that were hosted there, including JIRA pages like this one, are now broken. What can I do to access all the lost content of projects that were ...
15
votes
2answers
183 views

Do software patents for common formats (gif, mp3, h264) apply globally? [closed]

I've been told that I should not use some format because it's patented (gif, mp3, h264). I'm not a U.S. citizen but from E.U. Do these patents apply to me? Are they global? U.S. specific? Or is it ...
2
votes
1answer
196 views

How do I choose a suitable license for my academic software? [closed]

I'm in academia and I think that as a matter of principle, my code should be open source. It's not likely to have a lot of users. It might have none other than myself. I have it published on github, ...
51
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I determine if two open source licenses are compatible with each other?

Given two open source projects, each with different licenses, are there metrics or resources I can use to determine if it is legitimate to copy code from one of the projects to the other?

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