Obfuscation of 3rd art jars and distribution legal issues

Discussion in 'Java' started by gavin, Dec 7, 2004.

  1. gavin

    gavin Guest


    I am thinking of using a 3rd party jar for a personal project - I am
    curious, given that I will pay for this library I will need to
    distribute it with my aplication for my app to run.
    Whats to stop someone downloading my application and just stealing the
    3rd party jar?

    Also, I dont think the class files in the 3rd party jar are obfuscated,
    what are the legal implications of obfuscating someone elses commercial

    I am guessing its all going to be down to the individual license
    agreements but are there any general guidelines or websites with info
    on these legal matters?

    I am particularly keen to know how one is expected to distribute an
    application which includes a 3rd party jar the developer payed for!
    thanks guys!
    gavin, Dec 7, 2004
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  2. It depends on the license governing your use and distribution of it.
    There probably are, but I can't point you to specific ones. Google is
    your friend.
    As above, it depends on the license. The "standard" license may not
    include any distribution rights at all, in which case users would have
    to obtain their own licenses. Or you might have rights to distribute it
    freely. You might be able to come to an agreement with the licensor of
    the 3rd-party jar to act as an agent for them to license their jar to
    your clients and distribute it. Their are boundless possibilities. The
    only sure answer is to read the license and discuss its terms with the
    licensor. It may be in your best interest to involve an attorney. I am
    not one.

    John Bollinger
    John C. Bollinger, Dec 7, 2004
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  3. gavin

    Chris Smith Guest

    In the end, the answer is that you should do what the library
    author/vendor requires you to do. If there's text in the license
    requiring you to obfuscate the code before distributing it, then do so.
    Otherwise, it's not worth your effort to obfuscate a third-party

    Although you seem to consider obfuscation a key part of deployment of
    anything, most people don't share that extreme viewpoint. I can see why
    some library providers may not want you to do so. In my personal
    judgement (which is not an informed legal opinion, and encompasses more
    than legal requirements), your unprovoked obfuscation of someone else's
    code is more likely to cause problems than solve them.

    The Easiest Way To Train Anyone... Anywhere.

    Chris Smith - Lead Software Developer/Technical Trainer
    MindIQ Corporation
    Chris Smith, Dec 7, 2004
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