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Licensing details

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bboyes
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Joined: 2004-02-14

Hi, I'm trying to understand how the GPL 2.0 license works on the mobile and embedded open source code. Here's the simple (I hope) question: can we use this code and also develop a proprietary, non-open application which runs on this JVM? Or must all our own libraries and applications also be released under GPL 2?

Thanks
Bruce

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terrencebarr
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Joined: 2004-03-04

Bruce,

Thanks for asking ... you are not the first one ;-) There has been some discussion and clarification on the topic, see the below links.

Basically, if you're developing a Java ME application that gets installed on the device independently of the Java platform runtime (i.e. not bundled or co-installed with the Java runtime) then the GPL properties of the Java runtime license (phoneME) don't apply to your application. This situation is the case for all typical application scenarios: The Java platform runtime is already present on the device and the application gets installed (via USB, bluetooth, or over-the-air) sometime thereafter.

In all other cases I would ask you to contact Sun to check the legal implications of a particular situation.

http://weblogs.java.net/blog/terrencebarr/archive/2006/11/index.html
http://forums.java.net/jive/thread.jspa?messageID=173863&#173863
http://www.sun.com/software/opensource/java/faq.jsp#c

Hope this clarifies it. Cheers,

-- Terrence

bboyes
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Joined: 2004-02-14

Yes that helps immensely. There's a good deal of confusion on this topic, as you know. Now I think I have it straight and will pass your answer on to others.

Best regards
Bruce

biehl
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Joined: 2003-06-19

With your question properly answered maybe you can enjoy a more humorous (but no less correct IMO) version of the answer, from Linus Torvalds

http://realworldtech.com/forums/index.cfm?action=detail&id=80193&threadi...

Message was edited by: biehl