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I'm creating a project on codeplex that uses Amazon Web Services and the AWS SDK for .NET

Which licenses can I use? The SDK is released under Apache 2.0 license, so I assume my project can or should use the same.

If I add another open source library released under a different license, do I need to find a license that is 'compatible' with both ie. one that has the same requirements for derivative works?


My requirement is for a license that allows me to publish a derivative work from the AWS .NET SDK. I can use any of the licenses that codeplex supports, which includes:

  • Apache 2.0
  • GNU GPLv2
  • MIT
  • Mozilla Public License 2.0
  • Microsoft Public License
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closed as not a real question by Robert Harvey, maple_shaft Aug 30 '12 at 19:13

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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Without specifying your licensing requirements, this is impossible to answer. Without specifying which licenses you are contemplating, the question in your last sentence is impossible to answer. –  Robert Harvey Aug 30 '12 at 17:49
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1 Answer

up vote 1 down vote accepted

If you're concerned about the ability to publish derivative works, you should definitely avoid licenses that place significant restrictions on the publications of derivative works, such as the GNU GPL. It's rather infamously known as a "viral license," because any derivative work, or any work linked to GPL-licensed code, must also be licensed under the GPL or a compatible license.

In my own work in open-source development, I've found the Mozila Public License to be ideal: it requires that any modifications to the code itself (such as bug fixes or new features) be published under the MPL, so that you and your users can gain the benefit of these improvements, but it does not place any restrictions on the type of code or projects that your MPL code can be used in. In my opinion, this is the correct balance between protection and free availability.

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Thanks, that's what I was looking for. I haven't heard the term "viral license" before, but that's exactly the concept I was worried about. –  mafue Aug 30 '12 at 18:25
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