question about the term "source"

Lawrence E. Rosen lrosen at
Thu Aug 1 21:04:56 UTC 2002

You won't get anyone on this list to tell you whether something you do
is legal or illegal.  You need to contact an attorney.  Where are you

/Larry Rosen

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Svend Tofte [mailto:svendtofte at] 
> Sent: Thursday, August 01, 2002 12:04 AM
> To: license-discuss at
> Subject: question about the term "source"
> Just how much of a programs source code, does "source" mean?
> I'm asking, since, I'm working with a few friends on a system 
> monitoring utility for Windows 2000. The original author 
> wanted it to come out under the BSD license, and we've all 
> proceeded from there.
> Now, the problems comes from the fact, that the main 
> programmer (this is written in Delphi) has never worked with 
> Open Source before, and as such, probably didn't do any 
> research before he began coding, and he used some of his own 
> "proprietary" components, and is now reluctant to ship the 
> source, as it would contain these components as well.
> Now, is this "legal" under the BSD license? I'm reading that 
> it both is, and is not. Since it's not a deriative product, 
> it should be complete source. But we're allowed to make 
> binary's hidden...
> Does the components MS once got from BSD (the networking 
> code) still go under the BSD license? Is it still Open 
> Source? I would say no right? Once you create a deriative, 
> and it's no longer all open, is it then Open Source?
> I have another question also, if we include his "components", 
> in a binary form, but the source for everything else, can we 
> still apply the BSD license? Do we need another license? (I 
> haven't read that much, but I would suspect some 
> Mozilla/Netscape license?).
> I hope all this makes sense, and I hope to get this issue resolved.
> regards
> Svend
> svendtofte at
> --
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