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I have this opensource code with MIT license that uses an Apache 2.0 licensed library.

I want to include this in my project, so it can be built right away.

In the point 4 of that license explains how to redistribute it:

excerpt:

4 . Redistribution. You may reproduce and distribute copies of the Work or Derivative Works thereof in any medium, with or without modifications, and in Source or Object form, provided that You meet the following conditions:

You must give any other recipients of the Work or Derivative Works a copy of this License; and

You must cause any modified files to carry prominent notices stating that You changed the files; and

You must retain, in the Source form of any Derivative Works that You distribute, all copyright, patent, trademark, and attribution notices from the Source form of the Work, excluding those notices that do not pertain to any part of the Derivative Works; and

If the Work includes a "NOTICE" text file as part of its distribution, then any Derivative Works that You distribute must include a readable copy of the attribution notices contained within such NOTICE file, excluding those notices that do not pertain to any part of the Derivative Works, in at least one of the following places: within a NOTICE text file distributed as part of the Derivative Works; within the Source form or documentation, if provided along with the Derivative Works; or, within a display generated by the Derivative Works, if and wherever such third-party notices normally appear. The contents of the NOTICE file are for informational purposes only and do not modify the License. You may add Your own attribution notices within Derivative Works that You distribute, alongside or as an addendum to the NOTICE text from the Work, provided that such additional attribution notices cannot be construed as modifying the License. You may add Your own copyright statement to Your modifications and may provide additional or different license terms and conditions for use, reproduction, or distribution of Your modifications, or for any such Derivative Works as a whole, provided Your use, reproduction, and distribution of the Work otherwise complies with the conditions stated in this License.

I'm not creating a derivative work ( I plan to provide it as it is ).

I don't have a NOTICE file, just my my own LICENSE.txt file.

Question: Where should I put something along the lines: "This project uses Xyz library distributed under Apache2.0 ..."? What's recommented?

Should I provide the apache license file too? Or would be enough if I just say "Find the license online here...http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0.html"

I hope someone who has done this in the past may shed some light on the matter.

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3 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Question: Where should I put something along the lines: "This project uses Xyz library distributed under Apache2.0 ..."? What's recommended?

The license is certainly implying that you should use some kind of NOTICE file. I'd recommend that you do that.

Should I provide the apache license file too? Or would be enough if I just say "Find the license online here...http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0.html"

You are required by the license to provide a copy of the license. Just do it.


Frankly, this is all quibbling. What is the problem with just doing what the license is plainly implying they want you to do?

If you find the plainly implied requirements objectionable (though I can't imagine why a reasonable person would find them objectionable), talk to a lawyer experienced in software IP issues.

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I have not done this in the past, but your quoted segment makes it very plain what is needed. Specifically, only the following line is relevant to you: "You must give any other recipients of the Work or Derivative Works a copy of this License;"

This means that you must include the license file itself, not just a link.

As for your other question, the license excerpt does not require that you explicitly call out the use of the library, but such information would be most useful in a README.txt or Dependencies.txt.

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You must provide a copy of the Apache License Version 2.0 (APLv2), also. It says so in the quote: "You must give any other recipients of the Work or Derivative Works a copy of this License".

No attribution other than that is required. So, putting "this project uses Xyz library distributed under Apache 2.0" somewhere is not necessary. The source code (the Work) and the license speak for themselves in this matter.

Of course, it's good etiquette to include an attribution like that one. Where it goes depends on the kind of software that you're making.

That said, it sounds like you are making a derivative work - you are building a binary with the APLv2-licensed software. That's a derivative work. (It's not clear from your question whether you are distributing a binary or not, actually.) If that's the case, you must deal with the NOTICE file appropriately. You say that you do not have a NOTICE file, but does the APLv2 software have a NOTICE file? If yes, then you must have some method of displaying the notices therein with your (binary) software.

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regarding "derivative work"... it's not clear whether the OP is creating a derivative work or not. BUT, "building a binary with the APLv2-licensed software" doesn't imply a derivative work. The license specifically says "Derivative Works shall not include works that remain separable from, or merely link (or bind by name) to the interfaces of, the Work and Derivative Works thereof." –  Andy Dennie Feb 27 '12 at 20:46
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