MySQL Restricts Access to Enterprise Source Code

Aug 10, 2007

MySQL is looking to restrict access to the source code for its GPLd MySQL Enterprise Server product.

The Enterprise source code will no longer be available on the previous server at ftp.mysql.com, says MySQL Vice President in his blog. MySQL will be moving the sources to enterprise.mysql.com and thus restricting availability to paying customers.

This step comes just a year after the enterprise split the commercial and free versions of the database. The code for the Enterprise Server and Community Edition will still be released under the GNU General Public License v2 (GPL). "The rationale is to underline the positioning goal of "Community Server for community users, Enterprise Server for paying users"", Arnö explains, going on to state that this does not constitute a departure from Open Source: "it does conform to the GPL, something that we’ve verified with the FSF to eliminate any doubt". GPLv2 states that users who receive binaries can insist on the source code of a program being made available to them.

The database will be included with various Linux distributions, such as the Red Hat and Novell enterprise versions. There will be no changers for users of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux or Suse Linux Enterprise Server as both packages already use the Community Edition.

The added value for MySQL Enterprise Server users will be monthly updates and quarterly service packs: at the same time, bugs will be fixed first in the enterprise version of the database, before the community version. Binaries and sources of the MySQL Community Edition are still available from the MySQL.

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