For Approval: Microsoft Community License
Jon Rosenberg (PBM)
jonr at microsoft.com
Fri Aug 10 16:16:42 UTC 2007
Microsoft is pleased to submit the Microsoft Community License to the OSI for consideration as an OSI approved license. Microsoft believes that this license provides unique value to the open source community by delivering simplicity, brevity, and clearly delineated reciprocal terms.
The three sections below provide the information required for the discussion portion of the approval process. We look forward to working with the OSI on this submission process and discussing this submission with the open source community.
Director, Source Program
Section I: Which OSI licenses are similar and why won't one of those do instead?
Although one can assess similarity of license terms in numerous ways, the MS-CL has some similarities to the Mozilla Public License (V1.1). However, we sought to draft a license that is simple, short, and easy-to-understand. In particular, the Mozilla Public License's definitions of original code, covered code, and modifications can be difficult to apply in practice, given the many ways in which software can be distributed and linked together. The MS-CL provides a clear objective test of whether or not a derivative work constitutes a modification of the original code.
Section II: Compatibilities and incompatibilities with other OSI licenses: Source code distribution breaks down into two areas: Relicensing of MS-CL code and redistribution of MS-CL code with other code that is licensed under a different license.
* Can MS-CL code be redistributed under a different license?
No. The license states that "If you distribute any portion of the software in source code form, you may do so only under this license... " This restriction is similar to the restriction in the Mozilla Public License that states "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." The license explicitly prohibits relicensing of the original licensed code under a different license, in whole, in part or as part of a different piece of software.
* Can MS-CL code be redistributed in combination with other code that is licensed under a different license?
As long as any files containing the original MS-CL licensed code are redistributed under the MS-CL license, then the MS-CL places no restrictions on combining MS-CL code with other code that is licensed under another license. Any files containing any of the MS-CL licensed code must be distributed only under the MS-CL license and not under any other license. Licenses that prohibit the distribution of code under any terms other than the terms of that license will not be compatible with the MS-CL.
Section III: The License: A copy of the license is included below and also provided as a .txt file attachment.
Microsoft Community License (Ms-CL)
This license governs use of the accompanying software. If you use the software, you accept this
license. If you do not accept the license, do not use the software.
The terms "reproduce," "reproduction," "derivative works," and "distribution" have the same meaning here
as under U.S. copyright law.
A "contribution" is the original software, or any additions or changes to the software.
A "contributor" is any person that distributes its contribution under this license.
"Licensed patents" are a contributor's patent claims that read directly on its contribution.
2. Grant of Rights
(A) Copyright Grant- Subject to the terms of this license, including the license conditions and limitations in
section 3, each contributor grants you a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free copyright license to
reproduce its contribution, prepare derivative works of its contribution, and distribute its contribution or any
derivative works that you create.
(B) Patent Grant- Subject to the terms of this license, including the license conditions and limitations in
section 3, each contributor grants you a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free license under its licensed
patents to make, have made, use, sell, offer for sale, import, and/or otherwise dispose of its contribution in
the software or derivative works of the contribution in the software.
3. Conditions and Limitations
(A) Reciprocal Grants- For any file you distribute that contains code from the software (in source code or
binary format), you must provide recipients the source code to that file along with a copy of this license,
which license will govern that file. You may license other files that are entirely your own work and do not
contain code from the software under any terms you choose.
(B) No Trademark License- This license does not grant you rights to use any contributors' name, logo, or
(C) If you bring a patent claim against any contributor over patents that you claim are infringed by the
software, your patent license from such contributor to the software ends automatically.
(D) If you distribute any portion of the software, you must retain all copyright, patent, trademark, and
attribution notices that are present in the software.
(E) If you distribute any portion of the software in source code form, you may do so only under this license
by including a complete copy of this license with your distribution. If you distribute any portion of the
software in compiled or object code form, you may only do so under a license that complies with this
(F) The software is licensed "as-is." You bear the risk of using it. The contributors give no express
warranties, guarantees or conditions. You may have additional consumer rights under your local laws which
this license cannot change. To the extent permitted under your local laws, the contributors exclude the
implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose and non-infringement.
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