Symisc Systems (developer of the SOD library) employs a dual licensing model that offers customers a choice of either our open source or a non-exclusive commercial license. Our open source license is the GPLv3. The GPLv3 permits use of SOD in open source projects or in applications that are not distributed to third parties. The commercial license permits closed-source distribution of an application to third parties.
The GPLv3 permits you to use the SOD library at no charge under the condition that if you use the library in a host application, the complete source code for your application must be available and freely redistributable under reasonable conditions.
If you wish to derive a commercial advantage by not releasing your application under the GPLv3 or any other compatible open source license, you must purchase a non-exclusive commercial SOD license. By purchasing a commercial license, you do not longer have to release your application's source code.
Non-exclusive Commercial License
The non-exclusive commercial license allows customers to develop, use and distribute applications which embed the SOD library to third parties under standard commercial terms.
Non-exclusive commercial licenses are sold "per host product" regardless of the number of copy sold of the host product and/or number of releases. If a company has three distinct products that each embed the SOD library, and does not want to follow the rules of the open source licenses, it has to buy three commercial licenses.
The non-exclusive commercial license is available for a fixed, non-refundable annual fee. This fee is always affordable and tied to the licensee legal entity (i.e. Individuals, Micro ISV, Startup or Enterprise class customer). You can order a non-exclusive commercial SOD license from the download page.
What does "redistribute" mean?
"redistribution" in the open source world means your application is distributed to one or more third parties. Giving an application to customers, even in alpha or beta releases, is redistribution. Giving contractors, affiliates, parent organizations or subsidiaries, business partners or support vendors a copy of the application is generally redistribution. Whether or not you charge money for your application does not matter. The only condition is redistribution. Building an application for use internal to your organization, is not considered redistribution. Again, if you have any questions on the redistribution issue, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
What must I release as open source?
Under the open source license, you must release the complete source code for the application that embed the SOD library. You do not need to release the source code for components that are generally installed on the operating system on which your application runs.
Does it matter if I charge money for my software?
Whether or not you charge money for your application does not matter. The only requirements is redistribution & source code availability (refer to the bullet above).
What open source license should I use in my project?
Any project that uses a license compatible with the GPLv3 such as the GPL, Apache License 2, Boost License, Mozilla Public License, Expat License and so forth can incorporate SOD without any legal constraint. Of course, releasing an application which embed SOD under an open source license does not change the requirements of our open source license, and the SOD source code remains subject to the terms of the GPLv3.
If your project uses a license not listed in the GPLv3 compatibility list and you think that is compatible with our open source license, again send an email to email@example.com with a copy of the license in question.
For all your legal, licensing or any other general inquiries, please email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Please do not request technical support. Your query will not be answered. Use the official support channels for that matter.