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The differences are pretty substantial.

The GPL puts no restrictions whatsoever on how you can use software that falls under it. Timescale's license, on the other hand, gives you very limited usage rights. You can use unmodified versions of the software, but you can't allow clients to make schema changes, nor can you use it to provide any service that is "primarily [a] database storage or operations product or service".

In addition, Timescale's license is much more restrictive about allowing derivative works. The GPL lets you create modified versions and/or reuse code in other products, no matter how extensive your changes, as long as the results are also GPL-licensed. Timescale's license lets you create modified versions, but you're not allowed to:

* make any changes that bypass "usage restrictions"

* use your changes in production

* distribute your changes in any way, except for assigning all the rights back to Timescale






Changes you make to GPL software only have to be provided under the GPL if you redistribute the work to others- if you keep it to yourself, run it yourself, etc, you are not required to release it as GPL.

Aren't you required to release it even if you run it yourself with GPLv3? Or am I thinking of another version?

You are thinking of the AGPLv3. Not to be confused with the GPLv3 =)

https://www.gnu.org/licenses/agpl-3.0.en.html

"It has one added requirement: if you run a modified program on a server and let other users communicate with it there, your server must also allow them to download the source code corresponding to the modified version running there."


As the term you cited says, the AGPL only requires distribution if you are providing it to some one else, including as service over a network- if you use it yourself, and don't distribute it (including over a network service) to anyone else, you still don't have to share your source.

Ahh, right, I thought I was misremembering but couldn't quite place how, thanks.

> In addition, Timescale's license is much more restrictive about allowing derivative works. The GPL lets you create modified versions and/or reuse code in other products, no matter how extensive your changes, as long as the results are also GPL-licensed

I mean, to be fair and add some balance here, a lot of people find that part of the GPL to be very restrictive.

There are many organisations who have banned the use of GPL code altogether because of this, and also because of ambiguity in the license (e.g. the never ending debate about static and dynamic linking etc).


> I mean, to be fair and add some balance here, a lot of people find that part of the GPL to be very restrictive.

I often see comments like this, but they make no sense. If you don't agree with the GPL, then don't use software licensed under it. The same as if there's proprietary software you don't want to license, don't use it. There's nothing to debate.

> There are many organisations who have banned the use of GPL code altogether because of this

Good, they read the license and don't want to follow it, so they don't use it. Exactly as intended.

You're confusing the GPL viral nature, which is a central feature, with something different that you wished for, but isn't real.

And by the way, since Linux is GPL, those same companies almost always make an exception, don't they now?




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