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Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 12:36 PM EST

Sun has just submitted a newly created license, the CDDL, to OSI for approval. Or not. They don't say officially if this is the license for an open source Solaris, but, well, duh. Probably it depends on if it is approved or not, for starters. But it's not a definite, and they would like suggestions and input on the license, separate from any particular product. So, let's read it as a proposed license for anything. Is it an improvement over current licenses or not? That is the question. Also, should it be approved by OSI? It's taken from the language of the Mozilla Public License but is an attempt to improve it from Sun's standpoint. So I have drawn up a little chart, so you can compare and provide meaningful input.

It's not compatible with the GPL, according to Sun representative, Claire Giordano:

"'Like the MPL, the CDDL is not expected to be compatible with the GPL, since it contains requirements that are not in the GPL (for example, the 'patent peace' provision in section 6). Thus, it is likely that files released under the CDDL will not be able to be combined with files released under the GPL to create a larger program,' Giordano said."

So what, you say? Other licenses are not either. But the whole idea of Open Source is that it's, well, open. For GNU/Linux and Solaris to benefit each other, for example, they'd need to choose a licence that allows that cross-pollination. So Sun is letting us know that it is erecting a Keep Out sign as far as GNU/Linux is concerned with this license, if it does choose it for Solaris, and that has consequences, as Linus points out:

"'I think the real problem Sun faces is not the license details as much as trying to build up enough of a community around the source base that the license would matter,' Torvalds told eWEEK.com.

"'The problem Sun has in that regard is actually somewhat visible in the license: They are not going to open-source everything, and the reason I say that is "visible in the license" is that the license clearly allows linking with other proprietary code, something Sun needs to be able to do itself,' he said. . . .

"As a result, Torvalds said, it will be tough for Sun to find support in the open-source software community. 'The community that Sun must be hoping to gather round Solaris will likely always play second fiddle to Sun itself. … They'll have a very hard time getting any real community.'"

If this license is attached to Solaris, Sun would be creating its own little community, and the word "little" is probably operative. This is not a sin, to want your own community, although it's probably not going to work out well for them, as a result, in my view, because the world has already voted, and it has voted for GNU/Linux over Unix. But let's presume that this is what Sun is knowingly deciding it might wish to do and that it has small dreams. That is a choice they are free to make, after all, since it is their code. But it does make one ask, what is Sun's problem with the GPL and the LGPL? Or is it Sun that has the problem?

Sun says, in effect, why criticize us? We are only doing what the MPL does. So any analysis seems to require the question, In what circumstances would it be useful or acceptable to use this license instead of the GPL, if any? There might be situations you can imagine where another license would be useful in the eyes of some. Is this a license suitable for such situations? It is trying to be.

The only way to analyze the license, then, meaningfully is to look at it without any particular product attached and to posit as a given that there might be some valid reasons in some circumstances to reject the GPL and try to imagine what they might be and whether this license addresses those circumstances well. Personally, I strongly favor the GPL, but if it were ideal for all circumstances, there would be no LGPL and they wouldn't be working on the next version. For the sake of analysis, then, I am willing to set that aside long enough to analyze and provide feedback, even if the final analysis turns out to be that only the GPL will do, from the standpoint of the community.

They already feel that the license addresses their corporate interests, but what about the community's interests? Who is addressing that? They are trying to address that, I'm sure, in their eyes, but that is what feedback is for, to let them know if they succeeded and if not, how to improve the license. They used the Mozilla Public License as a beginning template, as I said, but there are some differences, some fairly inconsequential, marked in blue, and some substantive, marked in brown. Here is what they have in mind to try to do, from their CDDL Description and Rationale page:

"We chose to use the MPL as a base, since it already had a number of attributes we were looking for in a license:

  • Requirement that the source of modifications be made available; this helps encourage code reuse and a vibrant community.
  • Requirement that the source of modifications be shared under the open source license; this helps encourage that open source remains open source.
  • Ability to distribute executables under a different license; this gives businesses more flexibility in licensing their derived works.
  • A 'files based' definition of modifications and covered software; this makes it easy to combine code with code distributed under different licenses.
  • Explicit patent license; this makes it easier for businesses to use the software without concerns over patent rights.
  • Provision for termination of rights in response to patent claims (i.e. 'patent peace' provision); this helps discourage patent litigation amongst the community, which we felt to be A Good Thing.

"The MPL came closest to meeting our needs. We felt that it had a number of issues, though, which prevented us from simply using that license or one of its variants.

"Once we embarked down the path of creating a new license, we focused on certain high level goals. We wished to create a license that was simpler, less burdensome for contributors, clear and consistent in the use of terms and language, and that was as reusable and general as possible. In addition, we made a number of specific improvements, a few of which are highlighted here.

  • Fixed the 'Effect of New Versions' problem. We added an option to make Covered Software available under a specific version of the license, rather than allowing the use of future license versions. This change was made to make the license more reusable by others: it addresses the concern that the license steward could change the terms of the license in ways that are not compatible with a community's (and the Initial Developer's) values and objectives.
  • Narrowed the 'patent peace' provisions to cover only software released under this license. We felt that this would make the license more acceptable to a diverse community of contributors, whether large or small. However, we believe that 'patent peace' has an important role to play in open source licenses, which is why we have strengthened the remaining such provision.
  • Simplified many of the Required Notices (or in a few cases, removed the requirement) since they seemed overly specific and burdensome.
  • Clarified the definition of Modifications, to make it easier for readers to understand what is covered by the license and what is not."

The defense that they used the MPL as their template doesn't mean either addresses the new threat on the horizon, and that is the patent threat. What constitutes a truly effective patent defense clause? There is one section in Sun's proposed license, clause 6, Termination, that is designed to address patents and that I notice particularly as needing tweaking. You may notice other things. To help us understand their purpose, here is Sun's explanation for why it chose the wording it did, and with respect to the termination clause, it says this:

6.2(a). Changed trigger from initiation of litigation to assertion of a patent infringement claim, for clarity. Also, created an inline definition of Participant Software to account for the fact that the claim might be against either a Contributor Version or against the Original Software and used this definition throughout the section. Clarified a potential ambiguity by adding “directly or indirectly” on line 6 in the first sentence, so that if your rights from this license are terminated due to your assertion of a patent infringement claim, you cannot reacquire those same rights indirectly.

We removed MPL's 8.2(b), which revoked license rights if patent claims are made against any product of a Participant, not just code released under this license. We're trying to build a community of diverse contributors, large and small, including commercial contributors, and felt that this section would be a hindrance to commercial adoption. However, we believe that “patent peace” has an important role to play in open source licenses, which is why we have strengthened the provisions in 6.2(a) and 6.4.

How would this clause work out, from the standpoint of a corporation wishing to use software under this license? What about developers? What if you live in a country that doesn't recognize software patents? And what is the definition of "reasonable"? Without some guarantee that patents will be offered on a royalty-free basis and with terms that are open-source compatible, how can anyone trust a clause like this? And it is a clause that assumes you have a lawyer or can afford one to do the negotiations that are assumed and apparently required. The negotiations are triggered, as I understand it, by a mere assertion of an infringement, not by an actual lawsuit. That may be good or bad, depending on your point of view, but to me it certainly implies a reverence for software patents that not all may share. And exactly what is a "reasonable royalty" for Open Source software? Since Sun is, I gather, asking for input by announcing this submission publicly, let's be positive and assume that they mean exactly that.

For contrast, here is OSL's termination clause:

10) Termination for Patent Action. This License shall terminate automatically and You may no longer exercise any of the rights granted to You by this License as of the date You commence an action, including a cross-claim or counterclaim, against Licensor or any licensee alleging that the Original Work infringes a patent. This termination provision shall not apply for an action alleging patent infringement by combinations of the Original Work with other software or hardware."

"Any of the rights" indicates you lose both copyright and patent licenses. So you stand to lose a great deal more if you bring a patent infringement action. Here the patent assailant must decide whether immediate loss of the software is worth pursuing a patent claim against anyone concerning this software. The termination of the license to the software is the developer's price for the assailant suing him or his customers, a “can’t have your cake and eat it too” clause.

And here, for further contrast, is IBM's Common Public License's patent defense clause, starting with commentary from Larry Rosen's book, "Open Source Licensing":

"The CPL license terminates automatically under two situations as of the date that a Recipient initiates certain kinds of patent litigation.

"Many commercial open source licenses contain this kind of patent defense clause. A company such as IBM, with its vast portfolio of patents, wants to be able to terminate patent licenses when it is sued for patent infringement. That defensive use of patents is an important part of such companies' patent strategies.

"This is the first situation:

. . . . If Recipient institutes patent litigation against a Contributor with respect to a patent applicable to software (including a cross-claim or counterclaim in a lawsuit), then any patent licenses granted by that Contributor to such Recipient under this Agreement shall terminate as of the date such litigation is filed. (CPL section 7).

"This termination provision applies to 'litigation against a Contributor' and 'a patent applicable to software,' regardless of whether it is applicable to software licensed under the CPL.

"This is the second situation:

. . . . If Recipient institutes patent litigation against any entity (including a cross-claim or counterclaim in a lawsuit) alleging that the Program itself (excluding combinations of the Program with other software or hardware) infringes such Recipient's patent(s), then such Recipient's rights granted under Section 2(b) shall terminate as of the date such litigation is filed (CPL section 7.)

"This termination provision applies to litigation against 'any entity' and 'a patent applicable to the Program' only.

"The first provision terminates 'any patent licenses granted by that Contributor to such Recipient under this Agreement.' The second provision terminates 'rights granted under Section 2(b).' . . .

Notice also that the termination provisions apply to the patent license only; the copyright license remains. . . . The CPL license provides no patent defense benefits to a licensor without patents."

That's my concern. How many FOSS developers have patents of their own? And while companies are busy coming up with patent defense clauses that reflect their concerns, what about protecting the little guy? Where is the clause that protects him?

Let's imagine the following scenario. Microsoft arranges for a patent pool, a law firm or a company that does nothing but sue over their patent portfolio, to sue Linux for patent infringement. They surely don't care about using any patents in Linux, so what do they have to lose from any of the corporate-sponsored patent defense clauses we have outlined here? What's to negotiate? How much to pay *them* is the only question on the table that has any muscle. Now what?

I think it's time, therefore, that the community come up with strategies that protect their actual interests, as opposed to corporate interests. So let's get started and the way to do that is to imagine scenarios and then think up ways to block. It's easy to find fault, of course, and when I started writing about this license, I wrote some snarky words about Microsoft being Dr. Frankenstein and Sun Igor, and this being Sun's "Yes, Master" license, but that's not a positive way of addressing the real issue, which is: what is a good license for the new reality? If this isn't it, what is? What is a good patent defense clause from the standpoint of the community, not from the standpoint of patent-holding corporations? They may not care about that, so we have to.

So, to get the conversation going, here's the chart, which I hope you find helpful in providing useful feedback, if for no other purpose than to educate corporations as to what the FOSS community feels is important. I also have the chart with a third column showing the explanations Sun provides for each change from its Description and Rationale page.

To do that, imagine the following scenario: a college kid in Finland decides to write his own operating system, and he decides he might like to use the CDDL as its license. How would that play out? You don't think it is worthwhile to protect the next Linus from patent infringement claims? Then you aren't thinking deeply enough about where creativity springs up and how vital it is to protect real innovation outside the corporate framework. They are busy thinking up clauses to protect what already exists, from the standpoint of their corporate interests, but no one, from my standpoint, (except for the OSL patent defense clause and the GPL, which is a license that considers users, not just developers) is looking at protecting the public's interest in future innovation, particularly innovation from individuals who, as we have seen, are fully capable of coming up with innovations that can turn the IT world upside down. That isn't something to throw away just to protect someone's corporate interests, if you are looking at the big picture.

UPDATE: Note that I have on Jan. 28, 2005 updated the CDDL clauses, to incorporate revisions made by Sun to the original draft and so it now reflects the wording in the final CDDL license. Words in purple represent those additions. Deletions are marked by striking the words dropped.

# Mozilla Public License Vs. 1.1 Common Development and Distribution License Vs. 1.0
1 Definitions. Definitions.
1.01 "Commercial Use" means distribution or otherwise making the Covered Code available to a third party. No equivalent definition.
1.1 "Contributor" means each entity that creates or contributes to the creation of Modifications. “Contributor” means each individual or entity that creates or contributes to the creation of Modifications.
1.2 "Contributor Version" means the combination of the Original Code, prior Modifications used by a Contributor, and the Modifications made by that particular Contributor. “Contributor Version” means the combination of the Original Software, prior Modifications used by a Contributor (if any), and the Modifications made by that particular Contributor.
1.3 "Covered Code" means the Original Code or Modifications or the combination of the Original Code and Modifications, in each case including portions thereof. “Covered Software” means (a) the Original Software, or (b) Modifications, or (c) the combination of files containing Original Software with files containing Modifications, in each case including portions thereof.
1.4 "Electronic Distribution Mechanism" means a mechanism generally accepted in the software development community for the electronic transfer of data. Undefined.
1.5/1.4 1.5. "Executable" means Covered Code in any form other than Source Code. “Executable” means the Covered Software in any form other than Source Code.
1.6/1.5 1.6. "Initial Developer" means the individual or entity identified as the Initial Developer in the Source Code notice required by Exhibit A. “Initial Developer” means the individual or entity that first makes Original Software available under this License.
1.7/1.6 1.7. "Larger Work" means a work which combines Covered Code or portions thereof with code not governed by the terms of this License. 1.6. “Larger Work” means a work which combines Covered Software or portions thereof with code not governed by the terms of this License.
1.8/1.7 1.8. "License" means this document. 1.7. “License” means this document.
1.8.1/1.8 1.8.1. "Licensable" means having the right to grant, to the maximum extent possible, whether at the time of the initial grant or subsequently acquired, any and all of the rights conveyed herein. 1.8. “Licensable” means having the right to grant, to the maximum extent possible, whether at the time of the initial grant or subsequently acquired, any and all of the rights conveyed herein.
1.9 "Modifications" means any addition to or deletion from the substance or structure of either the Original Code or any previous Modifications. When Covered Code is released as a series of files, a Modification is:
A. Any addition to or deletion from the contents of a file containing Original Code or previous Modifications.
B. Any new file that contains any part of the Original Code or previous Modifications.
“Modifications” means the Source Code and Executable form of any of the following:
A. Any file that results from an addition to, deletion from or modification of the contents of a file containing Original Software or previous Modifications;
B. Any new file that contains any part of the Original Software or previous Modification; or
C. Any new file that is contributed or otherwise made available under the terms of this License.
1.10 "Original Code" means Source Code of computer software code which is described in the Source Code notice required by Exhibit A as Original Code, and which, at the time of its release under this License is not already Covered Code governed by this License. “Original Software” means the Source Code and Executable form of computer software code that is originally released under the terms of this License.
1.10.1/1.11 1.10.1. "Patent Claims" means any patent claim(s), now owned or hereafter acquired, including without limitation, method, process, and apparatus claims, in any patent Licensable by grantor. 1.11. “Patent Claims” means any patent claim(s), now owned or hereafter acquired, including without limitation, method, process, and apparatus claims, in any patent Licensable by grantor.
1.11/1.12 1.11. "Source Code" means the preferred form of the Covered Code for making modifications to it, including all modules it contains, plus any associated interface definition files, scripts used to control compilation and installation of an Executable, or source code differential comparisons against either the Original Code or another well known, available Covered Code of the Contributor's choice. The Source Code can be in a compressed or archival form, provided the appropriate decompression or de-archiving software is widely available for no charge. 1.12. “Source Code” means (a) the common form of computer software code in which modifications are made and (b) associated documentation included in or with such code.
1.12/1.13 1.12. "You" (or "Your") means an individual or a legal entity exercising rights under, and complying with all of the terms of, this License or a future version of this License issued under Section 6.1. For legal entities, "You" includes any entity which controls, is controlled by, or is under common control with You. For purposes of this definition, "control" means (a) the power, direct or indirect, to cause the direction or management of such entity, whether by contract or otherwise, or (b) ownership of more than fifty percent (50%) of the outstanding shares or beneficial ownership of such entity. 1.13. “You” (or “Your”) means an individual or a legal entity exercising rights under, and complying with all of the terms of, this License. For legal entities, “You” includes any entity which controls, is controlled by, or is under common control with You. For purposes of this definition, “control” means (a) the power, direct or indirect, to cause the direction or management of such entity, whether by contract or otherwise, or (b) ownership of more than fifty percent (50%) of the outstanding shares or beneficial ownership of such entity.
2 Source Code License Licence Grants
2.1 The Initial Developer Grant.
The Initial Developer hereby grants You a world-wide, royalty-free, non-exclusive license, subject to third party intellectual property claims:

(a) under intellectual property rights (other than patent or trademark) Licensable by Initial Developer to use, reproduce, modify, display, perform, sublicense and distribute the Original Code (or portions thereof) with or without Modifications, and/or as part of a Larger Work; and

(b) under Patents Claims infringed by the making, using or selling of Original Code, to make, have made, use, practice, sell, and offer for sale, and/or otherwise dispose of the Original Code (or portions thereof).

(c) the licenses granted in this Section 2.1(a) and (b) are effective on the date Initial Developer first distributes Original Code under the terms of this License.

(d) Notwithstanding Section 2.1(b) above, no patent license is granted: 1) for code that You delete from the Original Code; 2) separate from the Original Code ; or 3) for infringements caused by: i) the modification of the Original Code or ii) the combination of the Original Code with other software or devices.

The Initial Developer Grant.
Conditioned upon Your compliance with Section 3.1 below and subject to third party intellectual property claims, the Initial Developer hereby grants You a world-wide, royalty-free, non-exclusive license:

(a) under intellectual property rights (other than patent or trademark) Licensable by Initial Developer, to use, reproduce, modify, display, perform, sublicense and distribute the Original Software (or portions thereof), with or without Modifications, and/or as part of a Larger Work; and

(b) under Patent Claims infringed by the making, using or selling of Original Software, to make, have made, use, practice, sell, and offer for sale, and/or otherwise dispose of the Original Software (or portions thereof).

(c) The licenses granted in Sections 2.1(a) and (b) are effective on the date Initial Developer first distributes or otherwise makes the Original Software available to a third party under the terms of this License.

(d) Notwithstanding Section 2.1(b) above, no patent license is granted: (1) for code that You delete from the Original Software, or (2) for infringements caused by: (i) the modification of the Original Software, or (ii) the combination of the Original Software with other software or devices.

2.2 Contributor Grant.

Subject to third party intellectual property claims, each Contributor hereby grants You a world-wide, royalty-free, non-exclusive license

(a) under intellectual property rights (other than patent or trademark) Licensable by Contributor, to use, reproduce, modify, display, perform, sublicense and distribute the Modifications created by such Contributor (or portions thereof) either on an unmodified basis, with other Modifications, as Covered Code and/or as part of a Larger Work; and

(b) under Patent Claims infringed by the making, using, or selling of Modifications made by that Contributor either alone and/or in combination with its Contributor Version (or portions of such combination), to make, use, sell, offer for sale, have made, and/or otherwise dispose of: 1) Modifications made by that Contributor (or portions thereof); and 2) the combination of Modifications made by that Contributor with its Contributor Version (or portions of such combination).

(c) the licenses granted in Sections 2.2(a) and 2.2(b) are effective on the date Contributor first makes Commercial Use of the Covered Code.

(d) Notwithstanding Section 2.2(b) above, no patent license is granted: 1) for any code that Contributor has deleted from the Contributor Version; 2) separate from the Contributor Version; 3) for infringements caused by: i) third party modifications of Contributor Version or ii) the combination of Modifications made by that Contributor with other software (except as part of the Contributor Version) or other devices; or 4) under Patent Claims infringed by Covered Code in the absence of Modifications made by that Contributor.

Contributor Grant.

Conditioned upon Your compliance with Section 3.1 below and subject to third party intellectual property claims, each Contributor hereby grants You a world-wide, royalty-free, non-exclusive license:

(a) under intellectual property rights (other than patent or trademark) Licensable by Contributor to use, reproduce, modify, display, perform, sublicense and distribute the Modifications created by such Contributor (or portions thereof), either on an unmodified basis, with other Modifications, as Covered Software and/or as part of a Larger Work; and

(b) under Patent Claims infringed by the making, using, or selling of Modifications made by that Contributor either alone and/or in combination with its Contributor Version (or portions of such combination), to make, use, sell, offer for sale, have made, and/or otherwise dispose of: (1) Modifications made by that Contributor (or portions thereof); and (2) the combination of Modifications made by that Contributor with its Contributor Version (or portions of such combination).

(c) The licenses granted in Sections 2.2(a) and 2.2(b) are effective on the date Contributor first distributes or otherwise makes the Modifications available to a third party.

(d) Notwithstanding Section 2.2(b) above, no patent license is granted: (1) for any code that Contributor has deleted from the Contributor Version; (2) for infringements caused by: (i) third party modifications of Contributor Version, or (ii) the combination of Modifications made by that Contributor with other software (except as part of the Contributor Version) or other devices; or (3) under Patent Claims infringed by Covered Software in the absence of Modifications made by that Contributor.

3 Distribution Obligations. Distribution Obligations
3.1 Application of License. The Modifications which You create or to which You contribute are governed by the terms of this License, including without limitation Section 2.2. The Source Code version of Covered Code may be distributed only under the terms of this License or a future version of this License released under Section 6.1, and You must include a copy of this License with every copy of the Source Code You distribute. You may not offer or impose any terms on any Source Code version that alters or restricts the applicable version of this License or the recipients' rights hereunder. However, You may include an additional document offering the additional rights described in Section 3.5. No equivalent.
3.2/3.1 3.2. Availability of Source Code. Any Modification which You create or to which You contribute must be made available in Source Code form under the terms of this License either on the same media as an Executable version or via an accepted Electronic Distribution Mechanism to anyone to whom you made an Executable version available; and if made available via Electronic Distribution Mechanism, must remain available for at least twelve (12) months after the date it initially became available, or at least six (6) months after a subsequent version of that particular Modification has been made available to such recipients. You are responsible for ensuring that the Source Code version remains available even if the Electronic Distribution Mechanism is maintained by a third party. 3.1. Availability of Source Code. Any Covered Software that You distribute or otherwise make available in Executable form must also be made available in Source Code form and that Source Code form must be distributed only under the terms of this License. You must include a copy of this License with every copy of the Source Code form of the Covered Software You distribute or otherwise make available. You must inform recipients of any such Covered Software in Executable form as to how they can obtain such Covered Software in Source Code form in a reasonable manner on or through a medium customarily used for software exchange.
3.3/3.2 3.3. Description of Modifications. You must cause all Covered Code to which You contribute to contain a file documenting the changes You made to create that Covered Code and the date of any change. You must include a prominent statement that the Modification is derived, directly or indirectly, from Original Code provided by the Initial Developer and including the name of the Initial Developer in (a) the Source Code, and (b) in any notice in an Executable version or related documentation in which You describe the origin or ownership of the Covered Code. 3.2. Modifications.

The Modifications that You create or to which You contribute are governed by the terms of this License. You represent that You believe Your Modifications are Your original creation(s) and/or You have sufficient rights to grant the rights conveyed by this License.

3.4/3.3 3.4. Intellectual Property Matters (a) Third Party Claims. If Contributor has knowledge that a license under a third party's intellectual property rights is required to exercise the rights granted by such Contributor under Sections 2.1 or 2.2, Contributor must include a text file with the Source Code distribution titled "LEGAL" which describes the claim and the party making the claim in sufficient detail that a recipient will know whom to contact. If Contributor obtains such knowledge after the Modification is made available as described in Section 3.2, Contributor shall promptly modify the LEGAL file in all copies Contributor makes available thereafter and shall take other steps (such as notifying appropriate mailing lists or newsgroups) reasonably calculated to inform those who received the Covered Code that new knowledge has been obtained. (b) Contributor APIs. If Contributor's Modifications include an application programming interface and Contributor has knowledge of patent licenses which are reasonably necessary to implement that API, Contributor must also include this information in the LEGAL file. (c) Representations. Contributor represents that, except as disclosed pursuant to Section 3.4(a) above, Contributor believes that Contributor's Modifications are Contributor's original creation(s) and/or Contributor has sufficient rights to grant the rights conveyed by this License. No equivalent.
3.5/3.3 3.5. Required Notices.

You must duplicate the notice in Exhibit A in each file of the Source Code. If it is not possible to put such notice in a particular Source Code file due to its structure, then You must include such notice in a location (such as a relevant directory) where a user would be likely to look for such a notice. If You created one or more Modification(s) You may add your name as a Contributor to the notice described in Exhibit A. You must also duplicate this License in any documentation for the Source Code where You describe recipients' rights or ownership rights relating to Covered Code. You may choose to offer, and to charge a fee for, warranty, support, indemnity or liability obligations to one or more recipients of Covered Code. However, You may do so only on Your own behalf, and not on behalf of the Initial Developer or any Contributor. You must make it absolutely clear that any such warranty, support, indemnity or liability obligation is offered by You alone, and You hereby agree to indemnify the Initial Developer and every Contributor for any liability incurred by the Initial Developer or such Contributor as a result of warranty, support, indemnity or liability terms You offer.

3.3. Required Notices.

You must include a notice in each of Your Modifications that identifies You as the Contributor of the Modification. You may not remove or alter any copyright, patent or trademark notices contained within the Covered Software, or any notices of licensing or any descriptive text giving attribution to any Contributor or the Initial Developer.

0/3.4 No equivalent. 3.4. Application of Additional Terms.

You may not offer or impose any terms on any Covered Software in Source Code form that alters or restricts the applicable version of this License or the recipients’ rights hereunder. You may choose to offer, and to charge a fee for, warranty, support, indemnity or liability obligations to one or more recipients of Covered Software. However, you may do so only on Your own behalf, and not on behalf of the Initial Developer or any Contributor. You must make it absolutely clear than any such warranty, support, indemnity or liability obligation is offered by You alone, and You hereby agree to indemnify the Initial Developer and every Contributor for any liability incurred by the Initial Developer or such Contributor as a result of warranty, support, indemnity or liability terms You offer.

3.6/3.5 3.6. Distribution of Executable Versions. You may distribute Covered Code in Executable form only if the requirements of Section 3.1-3.5 have been met for that Covered Code, and if You include a notice stating that the Source Code version of the Covered Code is available under the terms of this License, including a description of how and where You have fulfilled the obligations of Section 3.2. The notice must be conspicuously included in any notice in an Executable version, related documentation or collateral in which You describe recipients' rights relating to the Covered Code. You may distribute the Executable version of Covered Code or ownership rights under a license of Your choice, which may contain terms different from this License, provided that You are in compliance with the terms of this License and that the license for the Executable version does not attempt to limit or alter the recipient's rights in the Source Code version from the rights set forth in this License. If You distribute the Executable version under a different license You must make it absolutely clear that any terms which differ from this License are offered by You alone, not by the Initial Developer or any Contributor. You hereby agree to indemnify the Initial Developer and every Contributor for any liability incurred by the Initial Developer or such Contributor as a result of any such terms You offer. 3.5. Distribution of Executable Versions.

You may distribute the Executable form of the Covered Software under the terms of this License or under the terms of a license of Your choice, which may contain terms different from this License, provided that You are in compliance with the terms of this License and that the license for the Executable form does not attempt to limit or alter the recipient’s rights in the Source Code form from the rights set forth in this License. If You distribute the Covered Software in Executable form under a different license, You must make it absolutely clear that any terms which differ from this License are offered by You alone, not by the Initial Developer or Contributor. You hereby agree to indemnify the Initial Developer and every Contributor for any liability incurred by the Initial Developer or such Contributor as a result of any such terms You offer.

3.7/3.6 3.7. Larger Works.

You may create a Larger Work by combining Covered Code with other code not governed by the terms of this License and distribute the Larger Work as a single product. In such a case, You must make sure the requirements of this License are fulfilled for the Covered Code.

3.6. Larger Works.

You may create a Larger Work by combining Covered Software with other code not governed by the terms of this License and distribute the Larger Work as a single product. In such a case, You must make sure the requirements of this License are fulfilled for the Covered Software.

4/0 4. Inability to Comply Due to Statute or Regulation.

If it is impossible for You to comply with any of the terms of this License with respect to some or all of the Covered Code due to statute, judicial order, or regulation then You must: (a) comply with the terms of this License to the maximum extent possible; and (b) describe the limitations and the code they affect. Such description must be included in the LEGAL file described in Section 3.4 and must be included with all distributions of the Source Code. Except to the extent prohibited by statute or regulation, such description must be sufficiently detailed for a recipient of ordinary skill to be able to understand it.

No equivalent.
5/0 5. Application of this License.

This License applies to code to which the Initial Developer has attached the notice in Exhibit A and to related Covered Code.

No equivalent.
6/4 Versions of the License. Versions of the License.
6.1/4.1 6.1. New Versions.

Netscape Communications Corporation ("Netscape") may publish revised and/or new versions of the License from time to time. Each version will be given a distinguishing version number.

4.1. New Versions.

Sun Microsystems, Inc. is the initial license steward and may publish revised and/or new versions of this License from time to time. Each version will be given a distinguishing version number. Except as provided in Section 4.3, no one other than the license steward has the right to modify this License.

6.2/4.2 6.2. Effect of New Versions.

Once Covered Code has been published under a particular version of the License, You may always continue to use it under the terms of that version. You may also choose to use such Covered Code under the terms of any subsequent version of the License published by Netscape. No one other than Netscape has the right to modify the terms applicable to Covered Code created under this License.

4.2. Effect of New Versions.

You may always continue to use, distribute or otherwise make the Covered Software available under the terms of the version of the License under which You originally received the Covered Software. If the Initial Developer includes a notice in the Original Software prohibiting it from being distributed or otherwise made available under any subsequent version of the License, You must distribute and make the Covered Software available under the terms of the version of the License under which You originally received the Covered Software. Otherwise, You may also choose to use, distribute or otherwise make the Covered Software available under the terms of any subsequent version of the License published by the license steward.

6.3/4.3 6.3. Derivative Works.

If You create or use a modified version of this License (which you may only do in order to apply it to code which is not already Covered Code governed by this License), You must (a) rename Your license so that the phrases "Mozilla", "MOZILLAPL", "MOZPL", "Netscape", "MPL", "NPL" or any confusingly similar phrase do not appear in your license (except to note that your license differs from this License) and (b) otherwise make it clear that Your version of the license contains terms which differ from the Mozilla Public License and Netscape Public License. (Filling in the name of the Initial Developer, Original Code or Contributor in the notice described in Exhibit A shall not of themselves be deemed to be modifications of this License.)

4.3.Modified Versions.

When You are an Initial Developer and You want to create a new license for Your Original Software, You may create and use a modified version of this License if You: (a) rename the license and remove any references to the name of the license steward (except to note that the license differs from this License); and (b) otherwise make it clear that the license contains terms which differ from this License.

7/5 7. DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTY. COVERED CODE IS PROVIDED UNDER THIS LICENSE ON AN "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, WARRANTIES THAT THE COVERED CODE IS FREE OF DEFECTS, MERCHANTABLE, FIT FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR NON-INFRINGING. THE ENTIRE RISK AS TO THE QUALITY AND PERFORMANCE OF THE COVERED CODE IS WITH YOU. SHOULD ANY COVERED CODE PROVE DEFECTIVE IN ANY RESPECT, YOU (NOT THE INITIAL DEVELOPER OR ANY OTHER CONTRIBUTOR) ASSUME THE COST OF ANY NECESSARY SERVICING, REPAIR OR CORRECTION. THIS DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTY CONSTITUTES AN ESSENTIAL PART OF THIS LICENSE. NO USE OF ANY COVERED CODE IS AUTHORIZED HEREUNDER EXCEPT UNDER THIS DISCLAIMER. 5. DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTY.

COVERED SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED UNDER THIS LICENSE ON AN “AS IS” BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EITHER EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, WARRANTIES THAT THE COVERED SOFTWARE IS FREE OF DEFECTS, MERCHANTABLE, FIT FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE OR NON-INFRINGING. THE ENTIRE RISK AS TO THE QUALITY AND PERFORMANCE OF THE COVERED SOFTWARE IS WITH YOU. SHOULD ANY COVERED SOFTWARE PROVE DEFECTIVE IN ANY RESPECT, YOU (NOT THE INITIAL DEVELOPER OR ANY OTHER CONTRIBUTOR) ASSUME THE COST OF ANY NECESSARY SERVICING, REPAIR OR CORRECTION. THIS DISCLAIMER OF WARRANTY CONSTITUTES AN ESSENTIAL PART OF THIS LICENSE. NO USE OF ANY COVERED SOFTWARE IS AUTHORIZED HEREUNDER EXCEPT UNDER THIS DISCLAIMER.

8/6 Termination. Termination.
8.1/6.1 8. TERMINATION. 8.1. This License and the rights granted hereunder will terminate automatically if You fail to comply with terms herein and fail to cure such breach within 30 days of becoming aware of the breach. All sublicenses to the Covered Code which are properly granted shall survive any termination of this License. Provisions which, by their nature, must remain in effect beyond the termination of this License shall survive. 6.1. This License and the rights granted hereunder will terminate automatically if You fail to comply with terms herein and fail to cure such breach within 30 days of becoming aware of the breach. Provisions which, by their nature, must remain in effect beyond the termination of this License shall survive.
8.2/6.2 8.2. If You initiate litigation by asserting a patent infringement claim (excluding declatory judgment actions) against Initial Developer or a Contributor (the Initial Developer or Contributor against whom You file such action is referred to as "Participant") alleging that: (a) such Participant's Contributor Version directly or indirectly infringes any patent, then any and all rights granted by such Participant to You under Sections 2.1 and/or 2.2 of this License shall, upon 60 days notice from Participant terminate prospectively, unless if within 60 days after receipt of notice You either: (i) agree in writing to pay Participant a mutually agreeable reasonable royalty for Your past and future use of Modifications made by such Participant, or (ii) withdraw Your litigation claim with respect to the Contributor Version against such Participant. If within 60 days of notice, a reasonable royalty and payment arrangement are not mutually agreed upon in writing by the parties or the litigation claim is not withdrawn, the rights granted by Participant to You under Sections 2.1 and/or 2.2 automatically terminate at the expiration of the 60 day notice period specified above. (b) any software, hardware, or device, other than such Participant's Contributor Version, directly or indirectly infringes any patent, then any rights granted to You by such Participant under Sections 2.1(b) and 2.2(b) are revoked effective as of the date You first made, used, sold, distributed, or had made, Modifications made by that Participant. 6.2. If You assert a patent infringement claim (excluding declaratory judgment actions) against Initial Developer or a Contributor (the Initial Developer or Contributor against whom You assert such claim is referred to as “Participant”) alleging that the Participant Software (meaning the Contributor Version where the Participant is a Contributor or the Original Software where the Participant is the Initial Developer) directly or indirectly infringes any patent, then any and all rights granted directly or indirectly by such Participant to You under Sections 2.1 and/or 2.2 of this License shall, upon 60 days notice from Participant terminate prospectively and automatically at the expiration of such 60 day notice period, unless if within 60 days after receipt of notice You either: (i) agree in writing to pay Participant a mutually agreeable reasonable royalty for Your past and future use of the Participant Software made by such Participant, or (ii) withdraw Your claim with respect to the Participant Software against such Participant either unilaterally or pursuant to a written software agreement with Participant. If within 60 days of notice, a reasonable royalty and payment arrangement are not mutually agreed upon in writing by the parties or the claim is not withdrawn, the rights granted by Participant to You under Sections 2.1 and/or 2.2 automatically terminate at the expiration of the 60 day notice period specified above.
8.3/6.3 8.3. If You assert a patent infringement claim against Participant alleging that such Participant's Contributor Version directly or indirectly infringes any patent where such claim is resolved (such as by license or settlement) prior to the initiation of patent infringement litigation, then the reasonable value of the licenses granted by such Participant under Sections 2.1 or 2.2 shall be taken into account in determining the amount or value of any payment or license. 6.3 If You assert a patent infringement claim against Participant alleging that the Participant Software directly or indirectly infringes any patent where such claim is resolved (such as by license or settlement) prior to the initiation of patent infringement litigation, then the reasonable value of the licenses granted by such Participant under Sections 2.1 or 2.2 shall be taken into account in determining the amount or value of any payment or license.
8.4/6.4 8.4. In the event of termination under Sections 8.1 or 8.2 above, all end user license agreements (excluding distributors and resellers) which have been validly granted by You or any distributor hereunder prior to termination shall survive termination. 6.4 In the event of termination under Sections 6.1 or 6.2 above, all end user licenses (excluding distributors and resellers) that have been validly granted by You or any distributor hereunder prior to termination (excluding licenses granted to You by any distributor) shall survive termination.
9/7 9. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES AND UNDER NO LEGAL THEORY, WHETHER TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE), CONTRACT, OR OTHERWISE, SHALL YOU, THE INITIAL DEVELOPER, ANY OTHER CONTRIBUTOR, OR ANY DISTRIBUTOR OF COVERED CODE, OR ANY SUPPLIER OF ANY OF SUCH PARTIES, BE LIABLE TO ANY PERSON FOR ANY INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OF ANY CHARACTER INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, DAMAGES FOR LOSS OF GOODWILL, WORK STOPPAGE, COMPUTER FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION, OR ANY AND ALL OTHER COMMERCIAL DAMAGES OR LOSSES, EVEN IF SUCH PARTY SHALL HAVE BEEN INFORMED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. THIS LIMITATION OF LIABILITY SHALL NOT APPLY TO LIABILITY FOR DEATH OR PERSONAL INJURY RESULTING FROM SUCH PARTY'S NEGLIGENCE TO THE EXTENT APPLICABLE LAW PROHIBITS SUCH LIMITATION. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OR LIMITATION OF INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, SO THIS EXCLUSION AND LIMITATION MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU. 7. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES AND UNDER NO LEGAL THEORY, WHETHER TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE), CONTRACT, OR OTHERWISE, SHALL YOU, THE INITIAL DEVELOPER, ANY OTHER CONTRIBUTOR, OR ANY DISTRIBUTOR OF COVERED SOFTWARE, OR ANY SUPPLIER OF ANY OF SUCH PARTIES, BE LIABLE TO ANY PERSON FOR ANY INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OF ANY CHARACTER INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, DAMAGES FOR LOSS OF GOODWILL, WORK STOPPAGE, COMPUTER FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION, OR ANY AND ALL OTHER COMMERCIAL DAMAGES OR LOSSES, EVEN IF SUCH PARTY SHALL HAVE BEEN INFORMED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES. THIS LIMITATION OF LIABILITY SHALL NOT APPLY TO LIABILITY FOR DEATH OR PERSONAL INJURY RESULTING FROM SUCH PARTY’S NEGLIGENCE TO THE EXTENT APPLICABLE LAW PROHIBITS SUCH LIMITATION. SOME JURISDICTIONS DO NOT ALLOW THE EXCLUSION OR LIMITATION OF INCIDENTAL OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES, SO THIS EXCLUSION AND LIMITATION MAY NOT APPLY TO YOU.
10/8 10. U.S. GOVERNMENT END USERS. The Covered Code is a "commercial item," as that term is defined in 48 C.F.R. 2.101 (Oct. 1995), consisting of "commercial computer software" and "commercial computer software documentation," as such terms are used in 48 C.F.R. 12.212 (Sept. 1995). Consistent with 48 C.F.R. 12.212 and 48 C.F.R. 227.7202-1 through 227.7202-4 (June 1995), all U.S. Government End Users acquire Covered Code with only those rights set forth herein. 8. U.S. GOVERNMENT END USERS. The Covered Software is a “commercial item,” as that term is defined in 48 C.F.R. 2.101 (Oct. 1995), consisting of “commercial computer software” (as that term is defined at 48 C.F.R. § 252.227-7014(a)(1)) and “commercial computer software documentation” as such terms are used in 48 C.F.R. 12.212 (Sept. 1995). Consistent with 48 C.F.R. 12.212 and 48 C.F.R. 227.7202-1 through 227.7202-4 (June 1995), all U.S. Government End Users acquire Covered Software with only those rights set forth herein. This U.S. Government Rights clause is in lieu of, and supersedes, any other FAR, DFAR, or other clause or provision that addresses Government rights in computer software under this License.
11/9 11. MISCELLANEOUS.

This License represents the complete agreement concerning subject matter hereof. If any provision of this License is held to be unenforceable, such provision shall be reformed only to the extent necessary to make it enforceable. This License shall be governed by California law provisions (except to the extent applicable law, if any, provides otherwise), excluding its conflict-of-law provisions. With respect to disputes in which at least one party is a citizen of, or an entity chartered or registered to do business in the United States of America, any litigation relating to this License shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the Federal Courts of the Northern District of California, with venue lying in Santa Clara County, California, with the losing party responsible for costs, including without limitation, court costs and reasonable attorneys' fees and expenses. The application of the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods is expressly excluded. Any law or regulation which provides that the language of a contract shall be construed against the drafter shall not apply to this License.

9. MISCELLANEOUS.

This License represents the complete agreement concerning subject matter hereof. If any provision of this License is held to be unenforceable, such provision shall be reformed only to the extent necessary to make it enforceable. This License shall be governed by the law of the jurisdiction specified in a notice contained within the Original Software (except to the extent applicable law, if any, provides otherwise), excluding such jurisdiction’s conflict-of-law provisions. With respect to disputes in which at least one party is a citizen of, or an entity chartered or registered to do business in the United States of America, any litigation relating to this License shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the state and Federal Courts located in the jurisdiction and venue specified in a notice contained within the Original Software, with the losing party responsible for costs, including, without limitation, court costs and reasonable attorneys’ fees and expenses. The application of the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods is expressly excluded. Any law or regulation which provides that the language of a contract shall be construed against the drafter shall not apply to this License. You agree that You alone are responsible for compliance with the United States export administration regulations (and the export control laws and regulation of any other countries) when You use, distribute or otherwise make available any Covered Software.

12/10 12. RESPONSIBILITY FOR CLAIMS.

As between Initial Developer and the Contributors, each party is responsible for claims and damages arising, directly or indirectly, out of its utilization of rights under this License and You agree to work with Initial Developer and Contributors to distribute such responsibility on an equitable basis. Nothing herein is intended or shall be deemed to constitute any admission of liability.

10. RESPONSIBILITY FOR CLAIMS.

As between Initial Developer and the Contributors, each party is responsible for claims and damages arising, directly or indirectly, out of its utilization of rights under this License and You agree to work with Initial Developer and Contributors to distribute such responsibility on an equitable basis. Nothing herein is intended or shall be deemed to constitute any admission of liability.

13/0 13. MULTIPLE-LICENSED CODE.

Initial Developer may designate portions of the Covered Code as "Multiple-Licensed". "Multiple-Licensed" means that the Initial Developer permits you to utilize portions of the Covered Code under Your choice of the NPL or the alternative licenses, if any, specified by the Initial Developer in the file described in Exhibit A.

No equivalent.
Exhibit A EXHIBIT A -Mozilla Public License.

``The contents of this file are subject to the Mozilla Public License Version 1.1 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at http://www.mozilla.org/MPL/

Software distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" basis, WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing rights and limitations under the License.

The Original Code is ______________________________________.

The Initial Developer of the Original Code is ________________________. Portions created by ______________________ are Copyright (C) ______ _______________________. All Rights Reserved.

Contributor(s): ______________________________________.

Alternatively, the contents of this file may be used under the terms of the _____ license (the "[___] License"), in which case the provisions of [______] License are applicable instead of those above. If you wish to allow use of your version of this file only under the terms of the [____] License and not to allow others to use your version of this file under the MPL, indicate your decision by deleting the provisions above and replace them with the notice and other provisions required by the [___] License. If you do not delete the provisions above, a recipient may use your version of this file under either the MPL or the [___] License."

[NOTE: The text of this Exhibit A may differ slightly from the text of the notices in the Source Code files of the Original Code. You should use the text of this Exhibit A rather than the text found in the Original Code Source Code for Your Modifications.]

No equivalent.


  


Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested | 186 comments | Create New Account
Comments belong to whoever posts them. Please notify us of inappropriate comments.
OT Threads Here....
Authored by: chrisbrown on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 01:10 PM EST
n/t

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 01:41 PM EST
2.1 b, c, and d seem to be mostly blue, but the text matches fairly closely in
both licenses. Typo?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Corrections-if any
Authored by: morven24 on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 01:42 PM EST
Place errors in this thread So they are easy to find

Thank you









[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Stumbles on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 01:50 PM EST
Opinion - Sounds like all Sun wants is free developement from the
open source community and keep such in their own sandbox. Of
course this is only a "proposal" subject to evolution.

---
You can tune a piano but you can't tuna fish.

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • I read the same - Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:28 PM EST
    • I read the same - Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 09:40 PM EST
  • Free developement from THE open source community? - Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:49 PM EST
  • JAVA - Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:51 PM EST
    • JAVA - Authored by: Ninthwave on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 05:08 PM EST
    • JAVA - Authored by: bstone on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 02:51 AM EST
  • JAVA - Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:52 PM EST
not all opensource licenses are GPL compatable
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 02:01 PM EST
and while it would be nice to have more licenses be GPL compatable it definantly
isn't a requirement (or Apache and PHP would not be considered opensource for
example)

yes we still need to analyse the license and how it would work or not work in
general use, but an extended rant about how it's not GPL compatable isn't
productive and is likly to get the rest of your comments ignored. it's much
better to just note the limitations of not being GPL compatable and go on to
other issues

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 02:14 PM EST
I think its a reasonable license, which allows an unprecedented access and
availability of Solaris to the world.

Of course people are going to bitch and moan that it isn't GPL, but most of
these people are 'armchair developers' who have zero interest or ability to
exercise the rights w/regard to source code that either the CDDL or GPL grant.

I don't think anybody seriously interested in modifying, learning from,
extending or porting their software to Solaris will have any problem whatsoever
with this license, should it be applied to Solaris.

And if it isn't about modifying, learning from, extending or developing
application for Solaris - what is it about?

I think the CDDL gives everyone who wants 'free beer' exactly that.

[ Reply to This | # ]

I fail to see the point of covering this.
Authored by: Turin on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 02:21 PM EST
Sun is Microsoft's patsy, this is true. Their market share is dwindling. If
they open source Solaris, it's still 5 or so years behind Linux in terms of
driver support and usability on x86. So why bother covering them? Let them
fester and die. They just aren't significant.

To top it all off, this license they put out is a piece of proprietary garbage.
I would submit a line of code under that when icicles form off stalactites in
Hell. And yes, I do submit to GPL projects once in a while.

[ Reply to This | # ]

The place to start is with the MPL...
Authored by: dyfet on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 02:43 PM EST
First, let it be noted that, from the perspective of the GNU project, the MPL is accepted not just as a "open source" or OSI approved license, but as a valid "free software" license, although clearly one that is incompatible with the GNU GPL, and with other noted limitations. This is based on the freedoms offered under the MPL when compared to the GNU project definition of free software.

Given this fact, the first question and concern I would have is whether any of the changes Sun proposes in this new license takes away or further limits any of the freedoms already offered in the MPL, or if ideally it were to strenghten any existing or offers additional ones.

The question in regard to compatibility with the GNU GPL is whether this new license contains wording similar to section 13 of the MPL, which does give one permission to license disjunctivily, and hence could enable one to make a CDDL work available under dual licenses, such as GPL as well as the CDDL. A first reading is that the CDDL does not appearently contain this clause or offer this option in any fashion. Taken along with 3.1, and section 4 of the CDDL, it seems designed to explicitly prohibit one from offering disjunctive licensing. In this regard I think it has significient drawbacks even over the existing MPL.

Section 6.4 of the CDDL implies another means by which one can loose the right to use software, in that it implies some superior "distributor" can construct and add additional restrictions, where-as noted above you have no recipricial rights to use additional or different licensing terms.

Interesting, in both section 11 of the MPL, and 9 of this CDDL, it refers to this license as regulated and enforcable by common contract law. I think that is a weekness. The section about explicit compliance with U.S. export regulations in section 9 seems both very US-centric, and may in fact conflict with the definition of software freedom. This and other similar situations were handled much more equitably under section 4 of the MPL, which the CDDL also has no equivilivent for.

My initial reaction is that this new license just might still be able to meet the FSF definition of a "free software" license, depending on how one views 6.4 and 9, or if I missed something else important, but it clearly has many new limitations that I feel makes it an even poorer choice to use than the original MPL which it claims to wish to replace.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: rm6990 on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 03:08 PM EST
The CDDL is incompatable with the GPL. Linux has fairly good support for common
desktop devices, whereas Solaris lacks in this department. Sun may compete on
the server level, but until my printer, scanner, TV Tuner card and all that
other stuff works with Solaris for the average user it will not become big on
the desktop. A lot of people think it is difficult to build a desktop computer
that is Linux compatable...try having it be solaris compatable too. Since Sun
has avoided the GPL, they cannot use device drivers written for Linux as they
are GPLed software...meaning that Sun is going to have to release Solaris under
the GPL OR convince companies to rewrite their drivers for Solaris OR to release
new drivers under a BSD license or the CDDL so Sun can use them in Solaris OR
just not bother aiming for the desktop market. Seeing as this is the case, I
doubt Sun will compete with Linux much on the desktop except for among the lucky
minority that have machines that will work with Solaris completely.

Me, as well as a lot of other people, have swapped some of their hardware (sound
card and printer for myself) so that our computers will run with Linux. I know
I'm not willing to swap hardware again so I can use Solaris. Linux has a lot of
benefits over Windows in my opinion which is why I spent the time and money
required to switch. What is so fantastic about Solaris on the desktop that I
would want to repeat this process. (I have checked, my TV Card, Printer and
Scanner will not work under Solaris).

(If anyone reads OSNEWS...yes, I did post this same post there)

---
IANAL

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 03:10 PM EST
"""
3.1. Availability of Source Code. Any Covered Software that You distribute or
otherwise make available in Executable form must also be made available in
Source Code form and that Source Code form must be distributed only under the
terms of this License [...]
"""

This appears poorly written to me. I assume that they're trying to ensure that
redistributors of licensed code don't add new license conditions. That would be
fine. But this text seems susceptible to a very dangerous interpretation,
namely that anyone who licenses code under this license and distributes
executables under this license thereby prohibits themselves from subsequently
licensing _their own source code_ under another license, say, the GPL.

Perhaps licenses can't do that, I don't know. But it seems ambiguous at best.

polymath

[ Reply to This | # ]

Termination Clauses
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 03:12 PM EST
Given SCO's recent claim that they deserve some grace period because the GPL
termination clause doesn't specify a time period, I'd hope to see the
termination clauses of future licenses specifying something along the lines of
"automatic and immediate".

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Ahem - Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 11:09 PM EST
Compatibility with GPL?
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 03:17 PM EST

Isn't there a deliberate attempt to make the proposed license incompatible with GPL programs?

CIO TODAY, December 3, 2004

--------------------
Steve Stites

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Hi Steve, - Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 05:57 PM EST
CPL was good enough for M$
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 03:58 PM EST
IBM's CPL was good enough for Microsoft to release opensource code into the
wild. (http://sourceforge.net/projects/wix/)

What's the problem for Sun with this then ?
WiX is not an operating system and certainly it is not Java, it's not at the
core of Microsoft's business.

Solaris and Java are at the core of Sun's business.

Sun needs help to keep Solaris alive and they're looking to build a community
around it, whilst also making it cheaper to advance its development.
Getting x86 drivers from Linux is not a bad idea.

The problem with Sun is that they serve two masters, and that has been a dilemma
since Dr Faustus made his famous deal.

[ Reply to This | # ]

@PJ: The GPL is your favourite ...
Authored by: JochenW on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:05 PM EST
PJ, I know, that you love the GPl, but reread the following:
So what, you say? Other licenses are not either. But the whole idea of Open Source is that it's, well, open. For GNU/Linux and Solaris to benefit each other, for example, they'd need to choose a licence that allows that cross-pollination.
The GPL itself is incompatible with several other licenses, in particular the BSD License and the ASL. For example, when adding new sources to an Apache project, we carefully ensure, that the sources aren't GPL'ed or LGPL'ed. Following your argument from above, we ought to pressure any GPL licensor - which we have of course no right at all: The licensor is free to choose his license. But so is Sun: It is their code. If their license is OSI approved, then we should accept that license as it is. Of course, we may ask whether the license supports building a community. However, keep in mind that that this doesn't depend on the license only. For example, the Mozilla project was recently boosted with the same Mozilla license that it had for years. The difference was simply, that the new copyright owner (Mozilla foundation, rather than Netscape/AOL) has clearly a very different attitude.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Who needs feedback?
Authored by: Avenger on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:05 PM EST
Is it you PJ or Sun asked for it.
To me they don't seem to be very talkative so what they want?
Talking about feedbacks, some Sun guy (forgot his name) was about to answer
questions presented to him by the Groklaw community. Any answer?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Question?
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:18 PM EST
In clause 3.1,3.2

"and that Source Code form must be distributed only under
the terms of this License".

So can I distribute the source under another license as
well as this or what?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Is Mozilla an Open Source success?
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:29 PM EST
The reason I ask this is Mozilla has been supported by AOL with the 1.5 million
dollar gift to fund the remaining developement of the software after AOL
partnered with MS and signed a contract to exclusively use IE instead of
Mozilla. Thankfully, AOL saw fit to see the work at least completed, giving MS
a boot to the knickers even tho MS tryed to crush Mozilla with their contract
with AOL.

However, that money has either ran out by now, or soon will. After that, who
will be pushing developement for Mozilla? The community? That will last about
as long as when the developers start seeing their free community work ending up
in proprietary software without any compensation. Maybe the ecology will
support itself, but I have a feeling that most companies that make use of the
Mozilla engine and make it proprietary will do little to fund developement and
will give little back. Why would they, it's money out of their pocket into
someone elses.

Hopefully, Mozilla's MPL will maintain a community willing to develope. I can
see a consortium of companies pitching in, say a 100k a piece to add a feature
to benefit everyone, but I see most of thier developement remaining proprietary
since that's what will make their product compeditive and distiguishing.

Tho, the license scheme may work in SUN's favor. They will be pushing the
majority of developement and they will be in the lead which most developers will
follow (such as Firefox being the base and extentions and themes generated by
the community extends Firefox and it's capabilities).

But I have a feeling that if someone else uses Solaris for a product,
considering the complexity, very little sharing is bound to happen considering
the cost to R&D a worthwhile feature attractive enough to warrent switching
companies.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Want to bet Sun release OpenSolaris Kernel under Linux GPL and rest of OpenSolaris under CDDL
Authored by: NZheretic on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:35 PM EST
I'm still betting on Sun releasing the OpenSolaris kernel under the GPL license with the userspace exception, identical to the Linux kernel.

Sun has too much to gain from adopting hardware driver, clustering and virtualization source code, all GPL'ed for the Linux kernel.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Does Sun still matter?
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:42 PM EST
Solaris on Sparc will never be able to compete on a level playing field, because the hardware is too expensive.

Solaris on x86 seems a bit pointless. Its market share is tiny. The range of devices for which device drivers exist is very limited compared with Linux. Fewer people know how to support Solaris/86 than know how to support Linux. Linux development is proceeding faster than Solaris development.

What clear benefits does Solaris/86 offer over Linux to offset all these negatives?

I think Sun will soon be irrelevant. In which case, the sooner they get out of the O/S business the better for everyone.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Agreement to court jurisdiction provisions are void and voidable
Authored by: marbux on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:49 PM EST
On MPL 9, CDDL 11. Both embody differing but similar stipulations as to which court has jurisdiction and any related patent claims. At least in regard to federal courts, the attempt in both licenses to dictate which court has jurisdiction is void and voidable. Juridiction sets immutable limits on a given court's powers. Therefore, parties are not allowed to stipulate as to the scope of a court's jurisdiction.

---
Retired lawyer

[ Reply to This | # ]

Degree of change understated?
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 04:59 PM EST
I keep seeing one of the changes in blue as being a little more drastic. The
substituting of the word "code" with "software" seems
relatively minor *UNTIL* I combine it with their definition of "original
developer" (the entity who first releases the "software" under
their license). The combination seems to me to be pretty significant.

"Code" can be a few lines out of several thousand, while
"software" would be the whole thing. Under their definition of
"original developer", if you add a something that you developed three
years ago to something they released under this license last week, then they are
considered the developer of your code, and rights and control passes to them,
even if your contribution is a significant portion of the whole.

Not only does this seem more viral than even Ballmer's interpretation of the
GPL, it also sounds suspiciously like SCO's interpretation of IBM's unix license
as applied to AIX & Dynix.

Is anyone else reading this the same way?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Latesigner on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 05:01 PM EST
Sun's trying to be fair, from their point of view, but this just isn't a good
deal.
My first impression from a general reading, I'll get out my fine tooth comb
later, is that this is set up to give SUN as many outs as possible.

I think that's why it's so often general :

3.3/3.2

SUN: The Modifications that You create or to which You contribute are governed
by the terms of this License. You represent that You believe Your Modifications
are Your original creation(s) and/or You have sufficient rights to grant the
rights conveyed by this License.

where the MPL is specific :

MPL : Description of Modifications. You must cause all Covered Code to which
You contribute to contain a file documenting the changes You made to create that
Covered Code and the date of any change. You must include a prominent statement
that the Modification is derived, directly or indirectly, from Original Code
provided by the Initial Developer and including the name of the Initial
Developer in (a) the Source Code, and (b) in any notice in an Executable version
or related documentation in which You describe the origin or ownership of the
Covered Code.

I don't think they did this just to save the little guy the paperwork. If
someone files suit they'd be covered and it wouldn't matter if the suit were
from someone like SCO.

It may be that SUN just doesn't have that much choice, since they do have to
deal with patents, but I fail to see why a developer should make their problems
his when he doesn't have to.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Could this be a prelude to another lawsuit?
Authored by: Franki on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 05:23 PM EST
I really want to give Sun the benefit of the doubt, but I have to say I much
preferred them when they were not MS's whore.

Its hard to have OSS street cred when you willingly jumped in bed with the
worlds most notorious monopolist.

What I am wondering about specifically now, is whether this open sourcing of
Solaris is another way to take a shot at code in Linux that has the same origins
as Solaris.. Ie Pre SysV unix, BSD etc.

For that matter, how can sun change the license to code that has large parts
thereof already in the public domain?

I suppose one good thing could come from this.. SCO has claimed that Solaris is
clean, so if the OSS solaris comes out, and it contains code that SCO has shown
the court is infringing code, then that claim goes straight out the window

We know that this is an attempt by Sun to lure enterprises that would have
jumped to Linux to get Solaris instead, since by their logic, "both are
OSS, and both can be gotten free, and Solaris is the Unix we all knew".
Then hopefully (to Sun) they will pay millions in support dollars to roll it
out.
But is that all this is? With the MS connection, I can't help but think there
will be a legal consequence from this.

Anyone know if code already in Linux will come under scrutiny again if it
matches code in Solaris

rgds

Franki

---
Is M$ behind Linux attacks?
http://htmlfixit.com/index.php?p=86

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: wmarvel on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 05:31 PM EST
<em>"Notice also that the termination provisions apply to the patent
license only; the copyright license remains. . . . The CPL license provides no
patent defense benefits to a licensor without patents."

That's my concern. How many FOSS developers have patents of their own? And while
companies are busy coming up with patent defense clauses that reflect their
concerns, what about protecting the little guy? Where is the clause that
protects him?</em>

I'm sort of confused about the point here.

Mr. Rosen's comments apply to the CPL - from reading the terms of the CPPL, the
patent protections actually *do* revoke the copyright license:

<em> 6.2. If You assert a patent infringement claim (excluding declaratory
judgment actions) against Initial Developer or a Contributor (the Initial
Developer or Contributor against whom You assert such claim is referred to as
“Participant”) alleging that the Participant Software (meaning the Contributor
Version where the Participant is a Contributor or the Original Software where
the Participant is the Initial Developer) directly or indirectly infringes any
patent, then any and all rights granted directly or indirectly by such
Participant to You under Sections 2.1 and/or 2.2 of this License shall, upon 60
days notice from Participant terminate prospectively</em>

As far as I can tell, permission to copy is given under 2.1, and the license
explicitly states that those rights will terminate under the patent protection
clause - so it does, in fact, give a contributor without patents at least some
protection - about as much as it gives a patent holder, since there's no
guarantee a patent the code infriges is held by someone who is using the
software.

Also, the patent clause applying to only to infringements made by the
"Participant Software" may actually prevent certain nasty corporate
attacks.

Suppose we have a license that revokes when -any- patent litigation by a user of
the software is initiated, against a company that has contributed to the source.
Say I'm a small company, using some software that company has distributed, and I
find out that big company is infringing, in other, still-held-proprietary
software, a patent I own, that is *not* used in the software.

In that case, I, as the small company, can't initiate a patent action without
losing the rights to use/modify/distribute the software, even though it doesn't
use the infringed patent in question *at all*.

All a company would have to do is figure out a patent they wanted to swipe, and
finagle some way to get the owning person/company to use their software to the
point where a revocation of the license means bad things for the user ... and
viola, an easy means to swipe "rights" to use a patent.

So, it seems that at least in some ways, the CPPL might actually be better in
this respect, since it still lets infringement of unrelated patents be
litigated.


There is good and bad to almost any license.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Mozilla Licensing - more to it than just the MPL
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 05:57 PM EST
Several of the comments I've read suggest that the posters believe the Mozilla code base is licensed purely under the MPL. This is not the case: much of the code base is actually under a MPL/GPL/LGPL triple license.

This is why, in practice, the GPL/LGPL incompatibilities in the MPL license are not a problem for free software that wishes to borrow from Mozilla.

See here for more details.

Cheers,
Nick.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Lack of GPL compatibility cuts both ways
Authored by: ssavitzky on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 06:21 PM EST
Sun almost certainly made the license GPL-incompatible in order to prevent
pieces of their precious Solaris kernel from migrating into Linux. But this is
an axe (more suitable for hackers than a sword) that cuts both ways: pieces of
Linux can't end up in Solaris, either.

In particular, device drivers and filesystems, which Sun mostly lacks and Linux
has in abundance, will stay in Linux. Hardware manufacturers who write Linux
drivers for their devices aren't going to bother writing separate Solaris
versions, and Solaris developers won't be able to just rewrite the interfaces
and link them in because that would be violating the GPL. It's a much bigger
problem for Sun than it is for the Linux community.

---
The SCO method: open mouth, insert foot, pull trigger.

[ Reply to This | # ]

..so, Sun Proposes We Give'm Free Beer. Uh-huh. ;-)
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 06:24 PM EST
..I dunno about you, I know a _lot_ of people who needs it
more, and deserves it better, so I'll just turn down any
of Sun's Freebie Proposals.

..also, to keep the "patent peace" mentioned in their
proposed "license", I will turn down anyone who touches
any code under any Sun License (except the GPL), as I see
no need to find myself in court for not doing my due
diligence. ;-)

..other than seeing this as an hopefully useful to Groklaw
exercise in evaluating licenses, doing freebie work for
Sun is a _low_ priority with me, so I hope we here don't
divert any time or resources away from any valid issue.

[ Reply to This | # ]

GPL compatibility is non-existant
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 06:34 PM EST
"GPL compatibility" basically means "you can replace our licence
with the GPL". This is not "compatibility" since the combined
parts do not retain their licences.

The GPL is designed as a self-preserving licence. Either you accept that all of
its conditions get applied, basically replacing your chosen licence, or you are
out.

I can't blame anybody that considers some sort of patent protection or whatever
necessary.

The only small loophole is that quite a lot of software, including all of the
software copyrighted by the FSF as far as I know, is licenced with GPL version 2
or *any* later version a the choice of the user.

So people that have for some reasons decided to forego the GPL, now have the
chance to tell the FSF their story.

There is some software around without that GPL licence version choice: for
example the Linux kernel is licenced without that choice clause. And that means
that at some point of time it is likely that Linux kernel and FSF code will not
be freely mixable any more, since it will be too hard to get the "OK"
from every kernel developer to upgrade the licence.

Use of the "or any later version at the choice" guarantees some level
of interoperability with future free software, but it also demands a leap of
faith in the FSF. The FSF _does_ have written guarantees what a new GPL might
look like, but it still has leeway.

So even with a new GPL, keeping in synch with the rest of the world will require
a lot of trust.

And while fracturing free software is in the end an ugly thing, I think it
unfair to blame it all on those that decide not to let their own software be
licenced completely by a licence dictated and maintained by someone else.

I don't see any viable large-scale alternative in self-preserving free software
to the GPL, but I also find it hard to blame those that say that this
one-size-fits-all does not fit what they themselves want to place in the open.

I am glad for everyone that does, but fail to see how I can blame those that
don't.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun doesn't stand a chance against GNU/Linux
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 06:45 PM EST
unless they start with the GPL. Then, they had better find someone to run the
project with as much ability as Linus. (In terms of pulling together a
community) What are the chances of someone like that getting through all the
corporate employment screenings? Then they will have to turn him loose to do it
right. Sound likely? Then they will still be years behind GNU/Linux.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: urzumph on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 07:33 PM EST
"That's my concern. How many FOSS developers have patents of their own? And
while companies are busy coming up with patent defense clauses that reflect
their concerns, what about protecting the little guy? Where is the clause that
protects him?"

That is a problem. Under the legal system as it currently stands, 'the little
guy' simply does not have the resources to defend himself. This got me
thinking.

As far as I can see, there are a few possible solutions :

A Defense fund (which could be suplimented by Solaris profits / sales / support)
But the problem with this is that it is simply a knee-jerk reaction, and doesn't
solve the problem

Patent Cold War.
Licencee agrees that, in the event anyone exerts patent claims against anything
with this licence, all patents, copyright and trademark grants, licenses &
contracts with the party exerting the patent claim will be termenated as quickly
as the grant, license or contract allows.

(Of course, I don't know if companies would be happy about using it like that)

Return Fire.
In the event that a party excerts patent claims against a CDDL licensed product,
you agree to participate in the 'Return Fire' campeign.

The Return Fire campeign involves :
Filing complaints about any patents held by the patent claiming party (or their
parent corporations, sister corporations, or subsidiary corporations) with the
patent review committee.
Filing 'Unfair Competition' Complaints with the FCC
* any other simply available legal action
Donate Money to aid legal defense
Organize and / or participate rallies or marches in complaint.

That's all I can think of for now. The main problem is that a company that's
only job is sueing over patents is just a meat shield
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meat_shield), and we want to stop the company
orcestrating this.

[ Reply to This | # ]

CDDL vs. SCSL ?
Authored by: Boundless on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 07:39 PM EST
pj: > If this license is attached to Solaris, Sun would
> be creating its own little community, and the word
> "little" is probably operative.

They've tried that before.

It might be worthwhile to compare the proposed CDDL
to the existing SCSL (Sun Community Source License),
which is what I had originally expected to be the
license used for open source Solaris, at:
http://www.sun.com/981208/scsl/principles.html

It would also be instructive to examine the success
of the six-year-old SCSL, or rather, the projects
released under it. I only know of it because I was
asked to examine it at one time.
_______
IANAL - But the issues with SCSL were obvious.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 08:47 PM EST
So, Sun wants to let people see it's source, make whatever changes they like,
and contribute back. How is this contrary to the spirit of free software? Just
because it isn't exactly the same as the GPL doesn't mean it's bad.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 08:50 PM EST
Sun needs to adopt the GPL. Period.

krp

[ Reply to This | # ]

Simplification and clarification of liscences
Authored by: JC_Aussie on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 08:50 PM EST
I often wonder whether a new licencing system would be good that would cover
most of the variations similar in a way to file permissions in linux ie

say a 10 character code each defining how the software is to be used

eg: GPL would be
open source
reciprocal rights
redistribution acceptable
fees only for distribution
etc
might have a code
AABA......

whereas say windows would be
closed source
no recipricol rights
redistribution not allowed
fees per cpu

or even donationware could be
closed source
no recipricol rights
redistribution allowed
fees on donation

I know this would take a while to sit down and nut out but it would mean that we
could remove and refine a lot of the language and reduce the need some people
see to create their own licence for every possible situation

JC_Aussie

PS: I realise 4808584372417849 is a lot of permutations possible but it would be
restricted but the number of variations required

PPS: for the mozilla project you might have three 10 digit codes and just select
the one licence you want

[ Reply to This | # ]

"Initial Developer" Considered Harmful
Authored by: John Hasler on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 09:26 PM EST
IMHO the whole idea of an "initial developer" is defective. Among
other things, it ignores the possibility of code reuse. If I write a new
program that incorporates significant portions of several programs released
under one of these licenses, who is the "initial developer"?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Why Sun don't want GPL compatability
Authored by: emmenjay on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 11:22 PM EST
If Solaris were released under the GPL, or something compatible, then over a
fairly short period of time Linux and Solaris would merge into a single
product.

Linux developers would pinch the best bits of Solaris and Solaris developers the
best bits of Linux. That is not a criticism - they would be silly not to do
so.

However the result would be that Linux and Solaris would become so similar that
there would be no practical differentiation.

Sun want differentiation. Solaris is still their baby and they want it out
there.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Go ahead Sun : but I won't touch it with very long pole
Authored by: Anonymous on Sunday, December 05 2004 @ 11:51 PM EST
I already don't trust them due to the mugly Java situation. They are welcome to
try the same antics with Solaris, but I hope they don't expect me or other
kernel people to touch it. The patent liability to users will kill it too.

Their proposed license is dead on arrival.

As for PJ's comment about the GPL:

"..and they wouldn't be working on the next version"

there was some work done on that a while back involving some exec or execs from
Lineo with a deep connection to Canopy. Is this same group involved? I would
be very concerned that they are going to try to weasel word the GPL and open it
up to more attacks. As is, it seems to be doing very well: even the liars at
SCO are trying desperately to back pedal their way into the good graces of the
GPL.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Consider this ... please
Authored by: AntiFUD on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 12:17 AM EST
Okay, assume that I am a complete idiot (or a PHB - your choice).

Assume that I have an entrepreneurial project (this may be an oxymoron if you
chose either of the above choices!), that I am exploring. Assume further that I
do not want 'vendor lock-in'. Assume also that I plan to have some Windows
Tablet PC's (not connected to the internet, because that would a) be scary and
b) not be a requirement, to allow my employees to handwrite a form filling
application to be used to update a (to be chosen) database.

Okay I will need a server farm, using quad opterons in a 64-bit environment,
because if my plan works I am going to have lots of concurrent users handling
data intensive transactions. My servers will not be handling media (sound and
graphics) and won't require a 'gui' so the proprietary nature of ATI and or
Nvidia drivers would not be an issue.

In order to avoid 'vendor lock-in' I will wherever possible go with open source
software (except possibly where there are unavoidable server farm monitoring
proprietary products that I may have to use). Since I want to replicate
(real-time) all my data on a duplicate server farm (halfway round the world from
my 'local' server farm) and I want redundant servers that come online
immediately - should a disaster occur at either of my server farms - and I will
need load balancers, firewalls and SANs etc., why should I consider a solution
that uses different Operating Systems? Why should I consider a solution that
requires either a per processor, per machine or per user licensing agreement?

Okay - say, just for the hell of it, that I believe that Sun makes excellent
hardware, but that I believe that quad opterons are more adaptable than SPARC
machines, what is my incentive to use Solaris 10 (under whatever Open Source
licence) rather than any Linux distro (especially one chosen by Sun) on Sun's
hardware? So, while I am not a 'developer' in the true sense of the word, I
have to consider the position of any programmers or developers that I might
employ directly or on a work-for-hire basis. I have no intention of selling or
distributing and of the applications that I get developed, but I will, or
possibly may need to, provide other companies with some 'secret' applications
(similar to the old AOL CDs that we have all come to detest) so that they can
securely communicate with my servers and databases when signing up new users.

This leads me to question the acceptability of licence such as Sun's proposed
CDDL.

If I use a GNU/Linux solution I would have no problem with using Samba as an
interface between my Windows Tablet PC's and my other Linux systems. What is
the situation with respect to developing applications and possibly tweaking the
kernel (not for onward distribution) on an Open Source version of Solaris? Can
I, or developers on my behalf, rely on a mixture of CDDL Solaris using GPL
Samba?

If I was to go with a Solaris solution:

a) Can I rely on Sun (and any Community they attract) to provide bug and
security patches on as timely a basis as I have come to expect with Linux?

b) Can I rely on Sun to indemnify me in the event that someone contributes an
accepted merkey modification to Open Source Solaris and I unwittingly rely on
that modification and subsequently someone pursues a 'ridiculous' or 'submarine'
patent infringement claim against either the original 'contributor' or directly
against Sun? While I may have some similarly infringing code, developed
directly for me, why should that fact ever become known to the patent holder in
the US especially when I am in another country?

c) Can I afford to run the risk that Sun might advise the patent holder that I
am using their system?

d} Can Sun require me (with or without legal action) to stop using their Open
Source Solaris (in its totality) because 0.01% is, or maybe, infringing?
Especially if I am not even using that modification.

e) Can I rely on Sun (and/or their Community) to write around the infringing
code, so that my business isn't closed down?

f) If Sun will not indemnify me against patent infringement, will OSRM
underwrite a similar policy to the copyright infringement policies that I
understand they already provide? I assume because of the cost of 'patent' suits
in the US the premiums would be significantly higher than those for pure
copyright infringement coverage. How, I ask, can OSRM possibly calculate the
risks of potential patent infringement suits on an Operating System that is
currently proprietary and which is going Open Source? I can only assume that if
the 283 number for GNU/Linux is correct then Solaris will be the same or
greater. Who knows?

Since I do not believe that any of the foregoing questions arise if I go with a
GPL'd Linux Distro or my own compilation(s) of whatever kernels I select what
possible incentive would I have for choosing Solaris?

I have not addressed the database or storage issues although I believe that I
can use both Open Source (MySQL or PostgreSQL) or Proprietary (Oracle or DB2)
systems with Linux - is this true with Solaris for x86?

Now I have to admit that I have not tried to analyse the CDDL against the MPL or
GPL since a) why should I consider anything other than the GPL if the OS and
applications and patches thereto currently available meet my needs, and b) as
far as I can ascertain PJ was specifically asking about the 'patent' protection
issues as addressed in the CDDL and in any proposed GPL3. Hence what I have
tried to provide -for discussion- is a hypothetical project, in a sad world
where software patents may exist, (and may continue to exist in the US), and
specifically with respect to 'developers' even where that may include a Company
that hires the developer and in which such Company effectively runs the risk of
the effect of a spurious or real patent infringement suit.

Sun cannot rely on the financial strength of a 'modifier', it may be an
individual, whatever the licence says about the modifier's certification. This,
to my mind, is especially important in the case where the modifier is providing
the modification for free (as in beer).

Sun will either have to drop their idea of trying to compete with a GPL'd Linux
OS and supporting FOSS applications or they will have to indemnify both the
developers and the Open Source Solaris users (including for-profit commercial
users) against both 'interruption of business' and any 'patent infringement'
wherever in the world. And I think the latter is a really unrealistic
expectation. In the case of Linux where there is a 'worldwide' understanding
that all contributions, under the GPL, are provided for free and without
restriction, so long as the terms of the GPL are followed, there is little or no
incentive for a patent holder to go after a contributor to Linux, or FOSS for
that matter, since even if a contibutor is employed by a company with deep
pockets the contribution is from the individual rather than on a piece of code
that makes up one of the Company's pieces of IP, if it was released under the
GPL.

Hope this makes sense to someone out there.

---
IANAL - But IAAAMotFSF - Free to Fight FUD

[ Reply to This | # ]

Any OT out there
Authored by: webster on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 01:02 AM EST
This one's like real work. It's late and this is hard.

---
webster

[ Reply to This | # ]

Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: moosie on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 01:33 AM EST
What is 48 C.F.R. § 252.227-7014(a)(1), any why is there a difference between
linceses in 10/8?

- Moosie.

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Why not?
Authored by: piskozub on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 02:41 AM EST
Why can't they? Mozilla.org can use three licenses at the same time. The following are fragments of the actual license text from a mozilla.org source file:

Version: MPL 1.1/GPL 2.0/LGPL 2.1

The contents of this file are subject to the Mozilla Public License Version 1.1 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at http://www.mozilla.org/MPL/
[...]
Alternatively, the contents of this file may be used under the terms of either the GNU General Public License Version 2 or later (the "GPL"), or the GNU Lesser General Public License Version 2.1 or later (the "LGPL"), in which case the provisions of the GPL or the LGPL are applicable instead of those above. If you wish to allow use of your version of this file only under the terms of either the GPL or the LGPL, and not to allow others to use your version of this file under the terms of the MPL, indicate your decision by deleting the provisions above and replace them with the notice and other provisions required by the GPL or the LGPL. If you do not delete the provisions above, a recipient may use your version of this file under the terms of any one of the MPL, the GPL or the LGPL.

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I think this is a good time to be very careful...
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 04:49 AM EST
Micro$oft has shown to be VERY interested to find a way from profiting from the
GPL fruits without giving anything back, like can be done with BSD-style
licenses.

They would sell their soul to, in their own terms, find a way to 'extend' the
GPL.

This whole Sun proposal could very well be a way to 'test the waters, search for
a weakness, a crack in the GPL or this new license that they could exploit.

Even if this is Sun's own doing, with every good and honest intention, M$ will
be looking over their shoulder with interest and sharpened legal knives.

The very fact the GPL has been attacked so much, shows that it is a good
license, that it works. M$ would love an alternate license, more 'flexible' for
their goals, becoming wide-spread in its use.

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Waste of valuable corporate assets (not to mention a waste of time)...
Authored by: Groklaw Lurker on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 10:32 AM EST
This is, in my not so humble opinion, a waste of both Sun's resources and a
colossal waste of time. The GPL is really all about product quality through
longevity. How does a piece of software achieve longevity...? Simple, it must
remain useful and of industry standard quality or better.

Licensing under the GPL provides the greatest likelihood of any given software
product achieving these metrics simply because ALL distributed improvements MUST
be made available to the rest of the community for optional permanent inclusion
in the code base.

As a consequence, if anyone distributes a customization or improvement to a
GPL'd product, anyone else may use that improvement or customization. The
distributed product constantly improves. This is why Linux continues to improve
in quality day after day, month after month and year after year.

Sun appears to have Sun's best interest in mind, not the best interest of the
community or Solaris as an Open Source project. Certainly there is nothing wrong
with this, but Sun shouldn't expect rousing community support for such a flawed
licensing mechanism...

---
(GL) Groklaw Lurker
End the tyranny, abolish software patents.

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Sun's Proposed CDDL License - Feedback Requested
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 12:22 PM EST
Comments on the proposed CDDL:
1) This will reduce sharing between contributors. The problem with allowing
proprietary and non-proprietary files to co-exist is that for large projects,
critical files could be witheld by a single developer. Unless there is a large
amount of interest in coding around it, this means that all that will occur is
fixes and extensions to the "open" sections that the secondary
contributors are interested in.
Furthermore, in cases where large proprietary sections are held by multiple
developers, this could cause a disaster. If those developers split apart for any
reason, then no one can use the code (without coding around the holes).
2) Section 4.2 could help cause a rapid inflation of differing license types.
Within a single project, it is very useful to have compatible license types, and
the absence of an indirect pointer (automatically allowing software to be
distributed under later versions of the same license) may over time reduce the
value of the code (since more software may need to be coded around).
3) The absence of the MPL section 4 seems odd- why wouldn't you want a
severability clause?
4) I do not believe that any significant number of software companies have
problems with "patent peace" provisions; I'd keep the MPL clauses in,
and expand on them.

In summary, were SUN to release large portions of Solaris under this, I suspect
they would get an order of power more bug fixes from present Solaris users.
They'd get a smattering of additional features and drivers, largely from
companies that have internal OS products that they'd like to release for more
OSes. I don't think they'd get many companies doing serious development effort
on Solaris as a primary OS unless they released essentially all of their source
code under this license. I doubt this is the case, because then allowing linking
with proprietary code would be against their corporate interest.

Zimbel.

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How can Sun open-source Unix code?
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 05:12 PM EST
It is probably true that Linux was developed without
large amounts of direct copying from the Unix sources.

It is certainly true that Solaris DOES contain verbatim
copies of AT/T (or whoever presently owns it) Unix code.

Sun will have an enormous problem to prove that they are
only releasing code they authored themselves. We should
be especially concerned about this since we remember the
disasterous switch from SunOS to Solaris, which was
intended to move Sun's OS closer to pure Unix.


How is it possible for Sun to post this under an open license?

I wonder if Sun will be willing to indemnify the users,
and more importantly the re-distributors, of "Open
Source Solaris" against copyright (and patent) problems.

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All for One and One for All License
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, December 06 2004 @ 05:56 PM EST
PJ, as a solution to the patent lawsuit by proxy problem I suggest an All For
One, One For All License. It should do what Fyodor (of nmap fame) tried to do
against SCO using the GPL.

* The licensee's rights under AFOOFAL is revoked for ALL products that are
licensed under AFOOFAL if the licensee starts a PATENT lawsuit against ANY of
the copyright holders or users of ANY product that is licensed under AFOOFAL.
[This part of the license guards against direct patent attacks]

* The licensee's right under AFOOFAL is revoked for ALL products that are
licensed under AFOOFAL if ANYONE starts a PATENT lawsuit against ANY of the
copyright holders or users of ANY product that is licensed under AFOOFAL using a
patent that has been previously owned by the licensee. [This part of the license
guards against proxy patent attacks]

* The licensee's rights under AFOOFAL is revoked for the licensed product if the
licencee starts a COPYRIGHT lawsuit against ANY of the copyright holders or
users of the licensed product. [This part of the license guards against
unjustified copyright lawsuits]

* The AFOOFAL additionally includes GPL-style termination conditions that guards
against things like SCO's binary-only distribution of Linux. The AFOOFAL is in
every other respect (including strong copyleft) modeled after the GPL.


I think that writing a license like the one outlined above that has a chance to
be upheld by a court of law is a huge job, but it could be worth the effort.

Also, it would be necessary to have a lot of really useful software licensed
under the license to make it a powerful deterant. Ideally, at least the GPL and
Apache licenses should be changed to support the principles above. I suspect
however that a lot of people in the GPL camp won't like such changes, because
every added requirement in the license makes the software less free. The Apache
license already has patent claim termination, but maybe the foundation members
wouldn't like to go this far.

You should all be aware that the usefulness of free software is a weapon we can
use even if we aren't able to create a defensive patent portfolio. Even MS runs
Linux, you know.

Anyway, I believe that something like this is necessary to protect the freedom
of the software - just like the copyleft requirements of GPL are necessary.

IMHO/IANAL and everything...
Klas Adolfsson

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