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User 448521 avatar

By hezamu
via vaadin.com
Published: Mar 27 2010 / 13:40

CEO of Vaadin Ltd answers licensing concerns of the community members. An excellent read, and you can ask your own questions too.
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User 731933 avatar

giriraj.c replied ago:

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Sigh. Vaadin is not a pure open source project any more.
Why not just make money by providing service like JBoss does?
This kind of commercial license makes no big difference from traditional commercial software.

User 448521 avatar

hezamu replied ago:

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As the thread behind the link states Vaadin is and will be purely open source, and the Apache licensed core will be developed as aggressively as before.

The only change is that the Directory (which launches tomorrow!) will make it possible for anyone to publish addons for free or for a price. Vaadin Ltd. will offer a few addons that are dual licensed (AGPL and commercial), but these are aimed at enterprises. >90% of the addons available at launch will be available under an open source license only, mostly Apache 2.0.

User 731933 avatar

giriraj.c replied ago:

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hezamu,

Can you or Vaadin management give us a clear line what features will be called addons? "Aimed at enterprises" is too blur. Is Vaadin suitable for enterprise? Why not make all (at least a "complete" one) under Apache?

Take an example, from the thread, people concern that JPAcontainer is one of the most requested features among the community. But, it's dual licensed meaning it's not free for commercial use.

User 448521 avatar

hezamu replied ago:

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Vaadin includes a mechanism that allows you to install extensions just by dropping a JAR to your project. These extensions are typically UI components whose functionality is not included in the core, but it can also be a theme, a container implementation or some other utility to be used in a Vaadin application. A Vaadin addon is such an extension, and they are optional enhancements that will not be required to build any kind of Vaadin application, big or small.

Anyone can create, use and distribute these addons, and the looming Vaadin Directory (launches in 3 hours! see http://vaadin.com/directory ) will offer a central repository and channel for anyone to distribute their addons. The author of an addon decides the license and the price, if any. Creation of addons is very easy, and we encourage the community to create and publish their own addons in the Directory.

Vaadin Ltd is fully committed to keep the core library under Apache 2.0 forever, and when we come up with essential features they will go into the core. For example, we just released the new customizable Chameleon theme (see http://demo.vaadin.com/chameleontheme ) which we think is amazing. It will be available in the Directory under Apache 2.0 license.

By default the addons published by Vaadin Ltd are Apache 2.0 licensed, but we will also offer some addons with a dual license. At launch the Directory will include over 90 addons by Vaadin Ltd, some 5 of which are dual licensed.

Hopefully the community will not regard it as a bad thing that there are some optional addons available commercially, because it will allow us to develop Vaadin at even faster pace, which will directly benefit the whole community.

User 731933 avatar

giriraj.c replied ago:

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It's a nice strategy to make money!

It's exactly the same trick Icefaces played around. Keep Vaadin Apache version or core whatever cripple. Make money from these commercial addons.

The Directory is just another cover-up for its intended business activities. The key features such as JPA container that community contributed in advice and test is not free. We can expect more to come.

User 14280 avatar

Joonas Lehtinen replied ago:

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(copying my comments about JPAContainer license here from another thread)

JPAContainer is dual licensed: You can either use AGPL or a per-developer commercial license. I am sorry if you have tested that and did not notice that it is released under the terms of AGPL.

That said - you have quite a few options. If you are not willing to 1) open source your project, AGPL is out of the question. If 2) paying for it is also out of the question, 3) there are still at least two Apache-licensed JPA implementations for Vaadin. If those are not satisfactory, you can join the developers of the free ones and 4) make them better. If you do not want to share your changes or dislike the free implementations, you can always 5) create your own implementation from scratch. And 6) release that with the license you want to on Vaadin Directory. Or even 7) sell your own JPA integration through Vaadin Directory. And if all the above options are not satisfactory, how about 8) not using a JPA integration in your project?

Just to be clear - Are you saying that it would be better if JPAContainer add-on would not exist at all than it existing under AGPL? If in addition to that there is optional commercial license - would the existence of such option be also bad?

Please read the forum thread linked from this post - there is a good discussion on this.

User 355541 avatar

zodix replied ago:

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Vaadin is backed up with a company (IT Mills) and it is very reasonable that it has to make revenue from it. I don't believe any company can support a zero-income product in a long run. Selling addons should be a good approach for making Vaadin better. The only issue is that stop calling other's oss release limited -- I wonder if you guys really study them or play fool with us.

User 14280 avatar

Joonas Lehtinen replied ago:

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My sincere apologies if I have my reference to ZK in the (linked thread) was not appropriate. I removed the reference to ZK from the discussion.

The reason for referring was to state that we believe that the whole Vaadin Framework will stay free (Apache 2.0) in the future and there will be no "better" commercial editions. The whole point of modularity, add-ons and directory is to give freedom for anyone to add anything to Vaadin and make it as easy to use as it would be in the "core framework". I hope that this added freedom doesn't insult anyone.

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