Good question, I think if anything a list of questions should be compiled and then sent to the ExtJS team for review and then posted as a sticky thread.
- Suppose you have an index.php that includes Ext JS. According to the FSF, in that case index.php would be also under GPL since it is using ext. Since it must be GPL, it's source must be distributed. Since it is GPL, the "viral" effect of GPL is now in effect and any thing that uses index.php (if anything) on the serverside would also fall under the GPL. (Note: Note this is a pretty gray area)
Like MySql and other GPL software the way to use GPL code without having to license under GPL is to not bundle or distribute the GPL code with your application. If you instead have the end user (developer?) download and install ext js on their own, they are then bound to the license and not you or your software.
For those seeking an FAQ, we have defined and explained some of the reasoning and license implications under these 2 pages:
It's worth noting that the examples given at the beginning of this post are just my opinion and it is impossible for us to analyze everyone's usage and say whether or not someone "complies" with the GPL. That really is a task for an attorney or even someone with better knowledge of your application and how Ext JS is used.
In the end, we want Ext JS to be open source friendly and still have a good business model in place to grow. The old Ext License was not open source friendly and pretty much killed all options for use in open source projects. That wasn't our goal so we had to address it.
Sencha Co-Founder, Ext JS Founder
Original author of Ext JS 1, 2 & 3.
I'm disappointed to see the switch to the GPL...and it is not because I think that it should be free for all usage or that the Ext team shouldn't be rewarded for their hard work. The viral nature of the GPL reduces the freedom the ability to use the library - my strong guess is that this will discourage people from using the library vs encouraging it. Even though this does not prevent the library from being used on internal projects that are not GPL, many companies will not get anywhere near GPL code for fear of its inflexibility. This makes it very tough to prototype and experiment with...two things that are needed for someone to actually adopt something in a commercial product with a commercial license.
Alternatively, if they had used a license that just required comercially redistributed software to require a commercial license but continuing to allow internal apps and open source projects to use the more liberal policies of the LGPL that would provide a lot more value to customers.
Ext is a for profit corporation just like my company and most of yours. It represents an outstanding value for a relatively small price to pay. I am proud to have purchased the commercial license since a concern from a business standpoint is that Jack and Brian will walk away from Ext because they could get more money somewhere else.
I agree, as soon as I can afford it I would like to purchase a license, but I would like to see ExtJS go to another open source license that is not viral. I don't see how ExtJS can benefit from it being GPL'd any more then it could be if it was LGPL'd.
Oh and thanks Jack for responding to this thread.
On a side note Ext should have a message on the forum similar to "Ext Premium Member" to signify commercial users.
I don't understand why people are considering Ext JS moving from LGPL to GPL a "restriction" instead of an increase on freedom. The source code continues as free (as in speech) as it was before. The only thing the developers are asking is that, if you want to give to your users less rights than the Ext Dev team gives to you, you must to acquire a license. Quid pro quo. That's it, it is explicit in the license now.
In my opinion, it is a sound business model, the software is Free to anyone intending to preserve this freedom and pass it along. If I understood the complaints well, people don't like GPL because they want the ability to take the code from the Ext team and contributors, but not to share their own. You can do it people, but it has a cost now, and it is not even that high.
For news management I award the newly declared Ext Management Team 1 out of 10.
Springing such a major change like this on the Ext developer community will damage developer relations for some time.
At the end of the day I don't mind ExtJS going for more revenue but please don't ever charge per server, now that would be the day I would walk.