Commercial Java program bundled with 'free' database?

Discussion in 'Java' started by Korto, Oct 30, 2006.

  1. Korto

    Korto Guest

    Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    distribute it to my customer so I have a question:

    Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    licensing fees?

    Thanks, all!

    Korto
     
    Korto, Oct 30, 2006
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. Korto

    Daniel Dyer Guest

    On Mon, 30 Oct 2006 20:19:44 -0000, Korto <> wrote:

    > Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    > files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    > sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    > distribute it to my customer so I have a question:


    Are you talking about the actual data files created? As far as I am
    aware, the output of a GPL program is not itself covered by the GPL. If
    you are talking about the database engine itself or the JDBC driver, then
    your application will be bound by the terms of the GPL (you would have to
    provide source to everybody that you provided binaries to). But you
    shouldn't be taking legal advice from some random bloke on USENET.

    > Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    > with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    > licensing fees?
    >


    Look for something with a BSD or Apache licence. PostgreSQL and Derby are
    the two alternatives that spring to mind.

    Dan.

    --
    Daniel Dyer
    http://www.uncommons.org
     
    Daniel Dyer, Oct 30, 2006
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Korto wrote:
    > Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    > files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    > sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    > distribute it to my customer so I have a question:


    I have sad this a few times, and I will say it again. Seeking legal
    advice on Usenet is a rather bad idea. Do you think a judge will buy
    your claim "But that stranger on Usenet told me so!" if things go wrong?

    Pay and ask a lawyer, if this is an important matter for you.

    /Thomas
    --
    The comp.lang.java.gui FAQ:
    http://gd.tuwien.ac.at/faqs/faqs-hierarchy/comp/comp.lang.java.gui/
    ftp://ftp.cs.uu.nl/pub/NEWS.ANSWERS/computer-lang/java/gui/faq
     
    Thomas Weidenfeller, Oct 31, 2006
    #3
  4. Korto <> wrote:

    > Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    > files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    > sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    > distribute it to my customer so I have a question:


    > Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    > with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    > licensing fees?


    You might consider asking this on misc.legal.computing.

    --
    C. Benson Manica | I *should* know what I'm talking about - if I
    cbmanica(at)gmail.com | don't, I need to know. Flames welcome.
     
    Christopher Benson-Manica, Oct 31, 2006
    #4
  5. Korto

    Guest

    i know some commerical programs like sam party dj
    http://www.spacialaudio.com/products/sampartydj/ use firebird as their
    database engine http://www.firebirdsql.org/index.php
    you can use sql server 2005 express too but you have to get permission
    from microsoft:
    embedding:
    http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnsse/html/emsqlexcustapp.asp
    licensing:
    http://www.microsoft.com/sql/editions/express/redistregister.mspx

    hope this helps

    Korto wrote:
    > Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    > files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    > sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    > distribute it to my customer so I have a question:
    >
    > Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    > with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    > licensing fees?
    >
    > Thanks, all!
    >
    > Korto
     
    , Oct 31, 2006
    #5
  6. Korto

    David Segall Guest

    "Korto" <> wrote:

    >Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    >files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    >sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    >distribute it to my customer so I have a question:
    >
    >Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    >with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    >licensing fees?

    I have what I believe to be a complete list of freely distributable
    "heavy duty" databases at <http://database.profectus.com.au>. MySQL
    Community Edition is included. I would be horrified if you are
    restricted from distributing the output that you have created from
    _any_ program even if you are restricted from distributing the program
    itself. In your case you can distribute both the database files and
    the Community Edition of MySQL. I think that MySQL is licensed under
    the Gnu Programming License so it would be sensible to include the
    license with your distribution and provide a link to the MySQL source
    code.
     
    David Segall, Oct 31, 2006
    #6
  7. Korto

    Chris Uppal Guest

    Korto wrote:

    > Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    > files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    > sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    > distribute it to my customer so I have a question:


    IIRC, the MySQL FAQ includes a section on what you can and can't do with MySQL
    without paying a license fee. If it's not in the FAQ then it's somewhere on
    their website.

    Obviously, you should consult a lawyer for a worthwhile opinion ("worthwhile"
    in that seeking it covers your arse against accusations of professional
    negligence). But reading the FAQ may possibly allow you to save that expense.


    > Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    > with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    > licensing fees?


    Yes. Any database which comes with a less restrictive licence than MySQL. I
    think PostgesSQL and HSQLDB both qualify, and there are others.

    -- chris
     
    Chris Uppal, Oct 31, 2006
    #7
  8. Korto

    Korto Guest

    Thank you, everyone, for the advice and input. You are correct, I may
    need to talk with a legal expert before I continue on with this
    project. Also, I'll check out those freely distributable databases and
    also look into the Community Edition of MySQL.

    Again, thank you all very much for your help!

    Korto


    Korto wrote:
    > Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    > files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    > sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    > distribute it to my customer so I have a question:
    >
    > Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    > with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    > licensing fees?
    >
    > Thanks, all!
    >
    > Korto
     
    Korto, Nov 8, 2006
    #8
  9. Korto

    Daniel Pitts Guest

    Korto wrote:
    > Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    > files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    > sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    > distribute it to my customer so I have a question:
    >
    > Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    > with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay
    > licensing fees?
    >
    > Thanks, all!
    >
    > Korto


    You can distribute SQL scripts that you have created, since they are
    your creation, and although they won't do anything without the
    database, they are not part of the dataqbase. That may be the best
    approach.
     
    Daniel Pitts, Nov 8, 2006
    #9
  10. Korto

    Simon Brooke Guest

    in message <>, Daniel
    Pitts ('') wrote:

    >
    > Korto wrote:
    >> Hi! I am writing a program for a client and I'm using several database
    >> files that I created with MySQL (inventory, customer, etc). I'm not
    >> sure if I can freely bundle these database files with my program when I
    >> distribute it to my customer so I have a question:
    >>
    >> Does there exist something like MySQL that I can use to create files
    >> with and distribute with programs that I write without having to pay

    >
    > You can distribute SQL scripts that you have created, since they are
    > your creation, and although they won't do anything without the
    > database, they are not part of the dataqbase. That may be the best
    > approach.


    Who owns the copyright on the files, you or the client? If you then you can
    give it to the client because you own it. If the client, then you /must/
    give it to the client, because he owns it.

    You don't have to pay any licence fees for using MySQL anyway, it's open
    source.

    --
    (Simon Brooke) http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/

    Do not sail on uphill water.
    - Bill Lee
     
    Simon Brooke, Nov 9, 2006
    #10
  11. Korto

    Chris Uppal Guest

    Simon Brooke wrote:

    > You don't have to pay any licence fees for using MySQL anyway, it's open
    > source.


    It's open source, yes. It's even Open Source. But it is /not/ freely
    redistributable -- and that is the whole point of this conversation, since the
    OP will be distributing the DBMS with the application.

    -- chris
     
    Chris Uppal, Nov 9, 2006
    #11
  12. Korto

    David Segall Guest

    "Chris Uppal" <-THIS.org> wrote:

    >Simon Brooke wrote:
    >
    >> You don't have to pay any licence fees for using MySQL anyway, it's open
    >> source.

    >
    >It's open source, yes. It's even Open Source. But it is /not/ freely
    >redistributable -- and that is the whole point of this conversation, since the
    >OP will be distributing the DBMS with the application.

    The MySQL Database Server Community Edition comes with a GNU Public
    License. Apart from some simple conditions such as the obligation to
    provide the source code on request is there anything that prevents the
    OP from distributing the DBMS with the application?
     
    David Segall, Nov 9, 2006
    #12
  13. Korto

    Chris Uppal Guest

    David Segall wrote:

    > > > You don't have to pay any licence fees for using MySQL anyway, it's
    > > > open source.

    > >
    > > It's open source, yes. It's even Open Source. But it is /not/ freely
    > > redistributable -- and that is the whole point of this conversation,
    > > since the OP will be distributing the DBMS with the application.

    > The MySQL Database Server Community Edition comes with a GNU Public
    > License. Apart from some simple conditions such as the obligation to
    > provide the source code on request is there anything that prevents the
    > OP from distributing the DBMS with the application?


    You mean other than the requirement to GPL (or similar) the whole application ?

    -- chris
     
    Chris Uppal, Nov 10, 2006
    #13
  14. Korto

    David Segall Guest

    "Chris Uppal" <-THIS.org> wrote:

    >David Segall wrote:
    >
    >> > > You don't have to pay any licence fees for using MySQL anyway, it's
    >> > > open source.
    >> >
    >> > It's open source, yes. It's even Open Source. But it is /not/ freely
    >> > redistributable -- and that is the whole point of this conversation,
    >> > since the OP will be distributing the DBMS with the application.

    >> The MySQL Database Server Community Edition comes with a GNU Public
    >> License. Apart from some simple conditions such as the obligation to
    >> provide the source code on request is there anything that prevents the
    >> OP from distributing the DBMS with the application?

    >
    >You mean other than the requirement to GPL (or similar) the whole application ?

    There is no requirement to GPL an application because it makes use of
    a separate GPL application. If there was Oracle would be GPL because
    it runs on Linux. Even Microsoft would be in trouble for using
    applications that are licensed under the GPL
    <http://www.microsoft.com/technet/interopmigration/unix/sfu/default.mspx>.
    Microsoft is obliged to, and does, provide a copy of the license and
    offer to provide the source code. As far as I am aware that is all the
    OP needs to do if he wants to use a Gnu Public Licensed database.
     
    David Segall, Nov 10, 2006
    #14
  15. Korto

    Simon Brooke Guest

    in message <4554742d$0$625$>, Chris Uppal
    ('-THIS.org') wrote:

    > David Segall wrote:
    >
    >> > > You don't have to pay any licence fees for using MySQL anyway, it's
    >> > > open source.
    >> >
    >> > It's open source, yes. It's even Open Source. But it is /not/ freely
    >> > redistributable -- and that is the whole point of this conversation,
    >> > since the OP will be distributing the DBMS with the application.

    >> The MySQL Database Server Community Edition comes with a GNU Public
    >> License. Apart from some simple conditions such as the obligation to
    >> provide the source code on request is there anything that prevents the
    >> OP from distributing the DBMS with the application?

    >
    > You mean other than the requirement to GPL (or similar) the whole
    > application ?


    And the problem with that is? It's the licence I use for all the products I
    ship to clients.

    --
    (Simon Brooke) http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/

    to err is human, to lisp divine
    ;; attributed to Kim Philby, oddly enough.
     
    Simon Brooke, Nov 10, 2006
    #15
  16. David Segall wrote:
    > "Chris Uppal" <-THIS.org> wrote:
    >
    >> You mean other than the requirement to GPL (or similar) the whole application ?

    > There is no requirement to GPL an application because it makes use of
    > a separate GPL application. If there was Oracle would be GPL because


    That does not appear to be in agreement with the claims of MySQL AB.

    http://www.mysql.com/company/legal/licensing/commercial-license.html

    Tom Hawtin
     
    Thomas Hawtin, Nov 10, 2006
    #16
  17. Korto

    Daniel Dyer Guest

    On Fri, 10 Nov 2006 14:53:01 -0000, Simon Brooke <>
    wrote:

    >> You mean other than the requirement to GPL (or similar) the whole
    >> application ?

    >
    > And the problem with that is? It's the licence I use for all the
    > products I
    > ship to clients.


    The problem is if you are intending to sell the same code to different
    people. Once you have given one client the source code they are free to
    do whatever they like with it, including give it away free to people who
    would otherwise have paid you for it. The FSF would argue that this is a
    good thing, but if you want to make repeat revenues you are not protected
    from the actions of your clients. This means a model like Microsoft uses
    for Office or Adobe uses for Photoshop would not work using the GPL as the
    licence. You can't cover your costs by charging several customers a small
    amount because somebody will scupper you by giving your work away for free.

    Dan.

    --
    Daniel Dyer
    http://www.dandyer.co.uk
     
    Daniel Dyer, Nov 10, 2006
    #17
  18. Thomas Hawtin wrote:
    > David Segall wrote:
    >> "Chris Uppal" <-THIS.org> wrote:
    >>
    >>> You mean other than the requirement to GPL (or similar) the whole
    >>> application ?

    >> There is no requirement to GPL an application because it makes use of
    >> a separate GPL application. If there was Oracle would be GPL because

    >
    > That does not appear to be in agreement with the claims of MySQL AB.
    >
    > http://www.mysql.com/company/legal/licensing/commercial-license.html


    I think MySQL has been intentionally FUD'ing a bit in this
    area.

    I belive that the common interpretation is:
    - if you you ship MySQL code with your code you need to
    either be GPL/FOSS or pay for a commercial license
    - if you don't ship any MySQL code then they can not
    claim any GPL issues at all

    This is not what MySQL say in the above link.

    "If you develop and distribute a commercial application and as part of
    utilizing your application, the end-user must download a copy of MySQL;
    for each derivative work, you (or, in some cases, your end-user) need a
    commercial license for the MySQL server and/or MySQL client libraries."

    But as I understand the GPL license then it is strictly about
    distribution. If you don't distribute any GPL software, then
    GPL does not apply to you.

    If the MySQL interpretation above was correct, then any software
    for Linux would be be GPL'ed. It is rather obvious that a
    Linux binary requires the user to install Linux.

    That is what I call common sense. Ask a lawyer for a true legal
    evaluation. I can not guarantee that the license law will follow what
    I consider common sense.

    Arne
     
    =?ISO-8859-1?Q?Arne_Vajh=F8j?=, Nov 10, 2006
    #18
  19. Korto

    Daniel Dyer Guest

    On Fri, 10 Nov 2006 23:25:10 -0000, Arne Vajhøj <> wrote:

    > I think MySQL has been intentionally FUD'ing a bit in this
    > area.
    >
    > I belive that the common interpretation is:
    > - if you you ship MySQL code with your code you need to
    > either be GPL/FOSS or pay for a commercial license
    > - if you don't ship any MySQL code then they can not
    > claim any GPL issues at all
    >
    > This is not what MySQL say in the above link.
    >
    > "If you develop and distribute a commercial application and as part of
    > utilizing your application, the end-user must download a copy of MySQL;
    > for each derivative work, you (or, in some cases, your end-user) need a
    > commercial license for the MySQL server and/or MySQL client libraries."
    >
    > But as I understand the GPL license then it is strictly about
    > distribution. If you don't distribute any GPL software, then
    > GPL does not apply to you.
    >
    > If the MySQL interpretation above was correct, then any software
    > for Linux would be be GPL'ed. It is rather obvious that a
    > Linux binary requires the user to install Linux.


    The licence terms are mostly dependent on the definition of "linking". If
    your application links with MySQL code then it is required to be made
    available under the same terms. The important libraries for linking with
    on Linux, such as glibc, are licensed under the LGPL rather than the GPL.

    You are right though, it is in MySQL's interest to promote a very broad
    definition of "linking". The MySQL JDBC connector used to be available
    under the LGPL but was changed to GPL a few years ago, presumably so that
    they could sell more commercial licences.

    Beyond not distributing MySQL (and, more importantly, the JDBC driver)
    with your application, to be extra safe you should probably also ensure
    that your code makes no reference to anything MySQL-related (including
    JDBC URLs and driver strings). If your application uses the standard JDBC
    API, and will work with other RDBMS options, then if one of your users
    downloads MySQL and its JDBC driver and configures your app to use it, I
    can't see how you can be held responsible for "linking". Anything less
    clearly separated is a grey area.

    Easiest solution: use PostgreSQL and avoid the hassle. Oracle Express
    Edition (or the equivalent free version of SQL Server or DB2) might also
    be sufficient but it is a bit heavyweight.

    Dan.

    --
    Daniel Dyer
    http://www.uncommons.org
     
    Daniel Dyer, Nov 11, 2006
    #19
  20. Chris Uppal wrote:
    > Simon Brooke wrote:
    >
    > > You don't have to pay any licence fees for using MySQL anyway, it's open
    > > source.

    >
    > It's open source, yes. It's even Open Source. But it is /not/ freely
    > redistributable -- and that is the whole point of this conversation, since the
    > OP will be distributing the DBMS with the application.


    Even when something has a clear GPL license we always send it all the
    way through legal.

    -Robert
     
    Robert M. Gary, Nov 11, 2006
    #20
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. bonita
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    453
    bonita
    Feb 20, 2006
  2. Replies:
    2
    Views:
    8,012
    craftykitty
    Aug 27, 2007
  3. Replies:
    0
    Views:
    287
  4. Aaron Scott
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    754
    Kevin Walzer
    Sep 2, 2011
  5. Steven Lumos
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    115
    Steven Lumos
    Aug 12, 2003
Loading...

Share This Page