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Cumbria LUG: Licensing: Open Source's Unique Advantage

Jun 17, 2005, 02:30 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Russ Phillips)

"Free and open source software is defined as such by the licence it is distributed under. Whether or not a particular piece of software can call itself Free Software or Open Source depends entirely on its licence. The Linux kernel is distributed under the GPL, and is therefore Free Software. Similarly, Microsoft's Windows Installer XML (WiX) toolset is released under the Common Public License. Since this is an OSI-approved licence, this software is open source. It is the licence terms that set open source apart from proprietory, closed source software.

"However, licensing seems to be rarely mentioned as a reason for using open source software. Microsoft are fond of claiming that businesses using open source software risk losing their intellectual property, although they rarely explain that claim..."

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