Changing the license of an Open Source project

Posted on 2006-05-26
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-21
Maybe this isn't a good place to ask this question, but I couldn't find a better site. Here goes:

I have two open source projects (libraries, not applications) that I distribute under the Boost license, which you can read at http://www.boost.org/LICENSE_1_0.txt. I would like to change the license now, because this license is not recognized by the OSI, and open source awards require a recognized license. Is it allowed to change the license?

And which recognized license would be most like the Boost license? I've thought about the BSD license and the MIT license. This part of the BSD license is not clear to me: "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." Does this mean that if a commercial software company uses my library in their application, they have to add the copyright notice? I definitely don't want that. The MIT license is less clear about it, while the Boost license is very clear that it is allowed to use it in binary form without copyright notice.
Question by:markvp
LVL 24

Expert Comment

ID: 16774310
You are the owner to it's you right to use the licences you like.
Yes the user of the library has to mention that parts of the software are copyrighted by you.

You can change that if you do not bother.

LVL 43

Expert Comment

ID: 16774570
You can release new version under new licence. Even if the new version has no changes comparing to the previous one.
LVL 35

Expert Comment

by:Duncan Roe
ID: 16777780
Have you looked at http://www.gnu.org/licenses/licenses.html? - as you are publishing a library you could use either the LGPL or the GPL, providing you think one of them is close enough to what you want.
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Author Comment

ID: 16779780

I don't want to use GPL or LGPL, because I find even LGPL too restrictive. I want it to be legally as easy to use as using e.g. STL.

Some background: the libraries are part of a commercial test application that I'm developing. The libraries are part of the users application, that can interact with my application, but are also useful without my application. Therefore I want companies to have no worries about having to even mention in their application that they use my libraries. Therefore the Boost license was ideal. But now I'd like a similar license that is accepted by the OSI.
LVL 35

Accepted Solution

Duncan Roe earned 500 total points
ID: 16780937
zlib has a license like that: http://www.zlib.org
But it's maybe too informal for you. What there is, is in the README

Author Comment

ID: 16793240
Thanks duncan_roe. This license is accepted by the OSI. I started checking the licenses on their website, but I did it in alphabetical order, so I hadn't seen this one yet :-).

It's not too informal, the boost license is also informal.

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