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Thread: File GDB API Licensing and Redistribution

  1. #1
    Vince Ulfig
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    Default File GDB API Licensing and Redistribution

    Hi,

    I work for a non-GIS software company. Let's call it CompanyX.

    I am wondering whether ESRI's standard FileGDB API license agreement would permits CompanyX to redistribute the FileGDB API with CompanyX software. If not, I am wondering whether CompanyX could sign a special license agreement and / or purchase the ability to permit this. I am wondering whether a Business Partner agreement between CompanyX and ESRI could facilitate this.

    I have read ESRI's FileGDB API License Agreement, which seems to prohibit redistribution and for-profit use of the FileGDB API, but I have also read discussions on this topic in this Forum and other places which seem to make it possible, and / or suggest that the License Agreement is not written as the FileGDB Product Manager intended, and may change soon.

    Any assistance anyone can lend is most welcome. You can call me at 4157101998.
    Thank you very much,
    -Vince
    Last edited by vulfig; 03-23-2012 at 04:43 PM.

  2. #2
    Vince Angelo

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    Default Re: Licensing and Redistribution

    You probably want someone trained in legalese reading the documents and binding the company
    to abide by them.

    While you shouldn't take it as fact from me, in my reading of the license, the restrictions on the
    file geodatabase API are for *commercial redistribution* -- charging others for that which Esri
    has given to you without charge. You are certainly free to distribute the *run-time* DLLs with
    your binaries (royalty-free!), just not the include files and link libraries -- anyone who wants
    them must agree to the same license (this is a common characteristic of most "open" license
    agreements -- it levels the playing field and prevents Esri from becoming embroiled in squabbles
    involving third or fourth parties). It probably isn't wise to assume the license terms will change
    soon.

    If you wish to negotiate a different license (though it hardly seems necessary), you should
    probably take that up with your local Esri marketing office, not with the good folks here in
    the User Forums. If your company's legal staff has interpretation questions, then the local
    RO is still the best way to link them to Esri's contracts department.

    - V

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