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Re: Simple Question About Licensing
Posted by: Scott Johnson
Date: August 06, 2004 12:31AM

Thank you for the reply, it does clear up some issues, however I think it raises more questions (as issues like this usually do).

<<With most commercial DMBS, the client has a license for the DBMS. It is up to the client to ensure that they have the correct licensing for the DBMS and is no concern of developers who build applications for the DBMS.>>

I am familiar with this concept, typically if you're building an ASP-DB web application you'll need a licensed copy of MSSQL, Oracle, etc... for your back-end. In keeping with my sample project however I wouldn't want my customers to have to go license/download (GPL or Commercial) mySQL in order to use my product. It would be most desirable if I could somehow build my application with the database "embedded" into the application itself so that when I distribute the product there is only a simple "Install and Use" process.

<<First, think about making your application Free Software or Open Source. You can use MySQL without cost then (in most cases), and can usually still sell your application (and any services to support it) at a fair rate. >>

Of course making it free would remove the ability to earn an income from the software, which is not desirable. Although with my example product it's not likely but it would be possible that I would have proprietary code I didn't want to share, maybe because of patents etc... so the open source path wouldn't be desirable.

<<Second, we have a program that allows developers to freely embed a commercially-licensed MySQL client in their application (be it a value-add GUI tool, a widget management suite or a home inventory system). The client will only talk to a commercially licensed MySQL server.>>

I think this is probably the answer to what I'm seeking however it's probably going to be the end of my sample product's viabilty with mySQL as it's datastore.

<<The final approach is very simple. If you are a small vendor or independent developer who needs a pricing break to make your application viable, just write a letter to that outlines your situation and needs. We will work to try and arrange pricing that works for your application.>>

This seems very reasonable, and I'm glad that you are flexible when it comes to this issue.

I would like some further clarification if possible

Am I right in assuming that there is no way to "embed" the database functionality (usually via some DLL statically linked) into the application? I want the whole "database" concept to be hidden from my customer experience, I only want them to experience the value of my application's function.

If this is a possibilty (which I'm assuming there is), would each copy of my product that I distribute require that customer to obtain a license? I think this was answered above, I just need a confirmation.

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Re: Simple Question About Licensing
August 06, 2004 12:31AM

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