How to Choose the Best License for Your Open Source Software Project

You need sound coding skills to create good software, but the success of an open source project can also depend on something much less glamorous: your choice of software license.

That’s because the license under which you make your code available has a real impact on what you can do with your code, who will contribute to it, and ultimately whether it gets widely used or ignored.

“If you are hoping to get your code incorporated into a bigger system then some open source licenses may put people off,” says Mark Johnson, development manager at OSS Watch, an organization that provides advice and guidance on the use, development, and licensing of free and open source software.