Perspectives on “Shared Source”

ONLamp.com has an interesting look at Microsoft's Shared Source Initiative. The article clears up several misconceptions about the Shared Source Initiative, including the popular misconception that there's only one Shared Source license: First, recognize that Shared Source isn't one program with one license. Shared Source is an umbrella program for all source sharing programs from Microsoft. Any time Microsoft makes source code available through a program, it brands it as part of the Shared Source Initiative, the marketing machine has the message to deliver, and a new program ends up on the Microsoft Shared Source website. These licenses span the spectrum from very locked down, look-but-don't-touch licenses to licenses approved by the OSI, and everything in between. While Shared Source may not be of much interest to die-hard free software and open source enthusiasts, many Linux users are working in mixed environments where Linux and Microsoft products have to co-exist. It's worth a read for anyone bridging both worlds in their work environment.

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