Open Source License Comparison
David Wallace Croft
|Maintain Attribution and Disclaimer
|Must Distribute Modified Source
|Same License for Larger Work
Licenses are sorted in the chart by requirements imposed upon the licensee.
Requirements imposed upon the licensor, such as a requirement to grant
licensee patent permissions, are not considered.
Only generic Open Source licenses were considered in the comparison.
This excluded licenses such as the Apple Public Source License (APSL)
and the Jabber Open Source License (JOSL).
I prefer generic Open Source licenses because I can adopt them without
needing to customize them and risk accidental oversights of needed text
Other Open Source licenses have been excluded because I believe that
they have been superannuated by modern licenses such as the AFL, CPL,
and the OSL. The GPL and LGPL may fit into this category but I included
them because they are widely used.
The CPL is an interesting choice. It requires that the licensee
share and distribute any modifications to the licensed Open Source code.
On the other hand, it is non-viral in that does not require that a larger
derivative work that incorporates this modified Open Source code also be
distributed as Open Source. In these respects, it is like the LGPL.
In my opinion, the main flaw with the CPL is that it may be modified
at any time by IBM and all source code released under earlier versions of
the CPL would be affected by the change. For this reason, I have
abandoned the CPL in favor of the AFL.
If there is a licensee requirement comparison feature or generic
Open Source license that I should have considered but did not,
please let me know.