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I have an open source project that is a add-in to TFS (ie it is for developers and those using TFS.)

It is currently using the GPL. But it occurs to me that the GPL does not really represent what I am trying to do with my license.

I want my code to be free to everyone who wants to use it. And if you modify it and use it then that is great too. You should not have to open source your modifications.

But I would like to block someone from building my code and selling it. Or modifying it and selling it. (Anyone that wants to do that should have to negotiate a separate license with me.)

Is there an open source license that prevents re-selling, but allows full non-vending use for a person/company that downloads it?

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3  
This software may not be resold, redistributed or otherwise conveyed to a third party. –  Robert Harvey Dec 14 '12 at 0:15
    
Do you not want them to share it whatsoever, or just that if they share they cannot charge a fee? –  whatsisname Dec 14 '12 at 0:36
    
@whatsisname - I don't care if they share it. Just as long as they are not selling it. –  Vaccano Dec 14 '12 at 2:45
    
Wikipedia has a table or two that compares several oss licenses en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_free_and_open-source_software_licenses#sec‌​tion_1 if you need a place to start with the common license formats. –  JustinC Dec 14 '12 at 3:47

2 Answers 2

No, there is no such license. And there cannot be. The ability to sell the software is a crucial part of the Open Source Definition. Any license that prohibits selling is by definition not Open Source.

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Only true answer so far ;) - if you can't sell it, it's not Open (or, from a different angle: if it's Open, then selling it makes little sense anyway, because the source code is available free of charge). –  tdammers Dec 14 '12 at 11:13
    
Selling it might still make sense. Look at RedHat sales. Sure, you get more than the programm when buying there, but still binaries and code are part of the deal. –  johannes Dec 14 '12 at 11:46
    
I did not know this. And I have a bit of a hard time believing it. Is there a citation of some kind for this statement? Some generally accepted definition of "Open Source". I think I have difficulty with this definition because, as a corporate programmer, my use of Open Source software never involves re-selling what is in the code (we only use it internally ). –  Vaccano Dec 14 '12 at 15:54
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"The license shall not restrict any party from selling or giving away the software as a component of an aggregate software distribution containing programs from several different sources. The license shall not require a royalty or other fee for such sale." That's the very first clause of the Open Source Definition. Alternatively: "The freedom to redistribute copies so you can help your neighbor" and "The freedom to distribute copies of your modified versions to others" are freedoms 2 and 3 of the Free Software Definition. –  Jörg W Mittag Dec 14 '12 at 16:23
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... according to the OSI. Eh, I've seen licenses that allow access to the source code but prohibit reselling; I think casual observers (and most businesses looking for certain safety guarantees) consider "open source" a reasonable description, even if the religious adherents don't. If the quibble is the words "open-source," then simply call it a "source code available" license. I do agree that it is unlikely that you will find an off-the-shelf open-source license that meets the OP's definition. –  Robert Harvey Dec 14 '12 at 17:41

First Why? Unless there is a high probability of this happening (in which case, you should be seeing your attorney now anyway, it appears that you are suffering from the I-am-afraid-someone-will-take-from-me syndrome.

In all seriousness, what are you concerned about, and why would someone purchase your code from someone else if it is free from you? And if the value added by the 3rd party is enough to warrant purchasing, why would you want to stop them? In other words, that would be a good thing for you (bigger ecosystem), not a bad thing.


Actual answer here:

I suggest you take the following BSD license and add a 4th bullet point that says something like this.

    * Redistribution of this software in source or binary forms shall be free
      of all charges or fees to the recipient of this software.

However, I am not an attorney, so I further suggest that you run this by a good one.

Copyright (c) <year>, <copyright holder>
All rights reserved.

Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without
modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:
    * Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright
      notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.
    * Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above copyright
      notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer in the
      documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.
    * Neither the name of the <organization> nor the
      names of its contributors may be used to endorse or promote products
      derived from this software without specific prior written permission.

THIS SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED BY THE COPYRIGHT HOLDERS AND CONTRIBUTORS "AS IS" AND
ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED WARRANTIES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED
WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE
DISCLAIMED. IN NO EVENT SHALL <COPYRIGHT HOLDER> BE LIABLE FOR ANY
DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES
(INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES;
LOSS OF USE, DATA, OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND
ON ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT
(INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF THIS
SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGE.
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And what are you going to do when a distributor refuses to distribute unless accompanied by a paid warranty? He'll just claim the distribution is free. Getting such terms & conditions right is work for a proper lawyer. –  MSalters Dec 14 '12 at 12:04

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