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Microsoft Releases Windows CE 3.0 Source 223

Posted by timothy
from the chase-the-carrot-while-I-swing-the-stick dept.
marquise2000 writes: "You can now check out what Microsoft's 'Shared Source' idea is worth. They released the source to the Windows CE 3.0 Core OS yesterday night, see this page. You need a Microsoft Passport to get behind the registration. A hotmail account will do (no matter how much spam you have in your inbox)."

If you haven't yet taken a look at Microsoft's "Shared Source License," this is a good time: contrast the restrictions on use and redistribution to the clauses on those things in the GPL.

Interesting that Microsoft should denigrate Free Software licenses as pathogenic but require that anyone who redistributes the software as source under their new "broader" license "include a complete copy of this License with your distribution." That license includes a provision that "if you sue anyone over patents that you think may apply to the Software for a person's use of the Software, your license to the Software ends automatically."

But since you may not distribute the licensed Microsoft code "in source or object form for commercial purposes under any circumstances," nor use it to run a business, it may be unlikely that such a suit would arise. All in all, I'm not sure who besides companies selling Win CE hardware or software will benefit from this "sharing."

However, if you ever intend to work on any Open Source programming project which might involve similar code, you might want to think twice about downloading any code under the provisions Microsoft lists here: a simple database query can establish whether "Yourname Lastname" had access to the Microsoft-owned code, which could result in legal problems down the road. Even if you never look at the downloaded code, the electronic trail will look like you did -- which is perhaps the most insidious aspect of this version of sharing.

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Microsoft Releases Window CE 3.0 Source Code

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