Licensing questions

Geir Magnusson Jr. geir at
Thu Jan 21 13:20:42 UTC 2010

On Jan 21, 2010, at 8:00 AM, Mario Torre wrote:

> Il giorno gio, 21/01/2010 alle 07.44 -0500, Geir Magnusson Jr. ha
> scritto:
>> It's far from a myth.  Sun has been open about the fact that they won't give the ASF a TCK license for Java SE in order to protect licensing revenue.
> Usual story as always with you, Geir.

Because it's a continuing problem.  

I and others are passionate about having the freedom to implement the Java SE spec and pass the TCK, and we haven't given up the fight.  You may not understand it now, but having one commercial entity able to assert direct control over any independent implementation of any spec, Java or otherwise, is a bad thing for FLOSS and software in general.

Sun's recalcitrance in dealing with Google over ME led us to Android (based on Apache Harmony's class libraries!), which is great because of the shake it's giving the mobile space, but I do have reservations simply because I'm not interested in seeing Java fork.  Talk about Pyrrhic victories...

> Just because you didn't got the TCK, you just divert from OpenJDK
> licensing to TCK licensing, which is not the topic of the mail and a
> completely different issue (and I'm not ignoring this, like you probably
> *may* think or guess, just saying that it's a different topic and a
> different problem, but especially a different question!).

At some point, you have to recognize that the TCK decision and the OpenJDK decision weren't made independently.  The TCK decision is reflective of big problem in the Java ecosystem, something bigger than the contractual dispute between the ASF and Sun. 

Sun sees a TCK-passing, independent-implementation of the Java specification over which Sun has no control a threat to Sun's business. 

 - 0 -

But anyway, to be really clear - OpenJDK licensing is fine.  It's the choice of the copyright holder, and Sun had the right to license the code any way they want.  And everyone who uses that code must respect the license terms.

Note that the individual asked about commercial, embedded use, which isn't always compatible with the reciprocity conditions of the GPL, CP exception notwithstanding.    It will be interesting to learn more about his use case.

>> That said, have you embedded openJDK into a commercial product?
> What do you think?

I'm guessing no.


> Cheers,
> Mario

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