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PaulCesar

Legalities of selling emulator Front End

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Hello, First off, please understand I am not here to argue the legalities of the use or distribution of ROM's, so that is not the legal input I am looking for. There are legal (at least legaly gray areas) ways of aquiring roms for systems such as ATARI, provided you own the cartridge, so the legality of emulators theselves are hardly questioned. Anyways, on to my question at hand. About 2 years ago I designed an extreemly simple full screen frontend combining a series of emulators (freeware and public domain) into a FFXI style interface which made for easy selection of titles, consoles, etc. It looks pretty , responds to a controller, etc. Basicaly, its a front end which I use for my home entertainment system, it plugs into a 32" Tele (using an SVIDEO out to converter box), loads on startup of windows, and provides a way to load, manage, and run roms in a way that abstracts the process from the les-technicay-advanced. It starts the roms directly, and writes controller configuration files automaticaly based on the single controller input screen. It also automaticaly runs them in full screen, and makes everything work completely keyboard-less, as well as a crap load of other features such as skins. Think an extreemly easy and powerfull management system for games. Needless to say, its a pretty nifty tool for a HES (home entertainment system), and recently I have had alot of friends and aquaintinces who have asked me where I got it, and how much it would cost. Though the program seems simple, it seems noone would mind a small purchase to aquire such a tool, but here is where the problem comes in. The idea of the program requires that it have access to a few specific emulators in which it creaes command line options based on given input into the configurator. These emulators are availiable free on the web, and I could easily make the confiuration of the program at startup point to where to find these and how to install them. BUT , it would be much nicer to actualy include these with the application (of course making due note that these are not part of the program, make them selectable at installation, and mentioning that they are available for free on the web) But can I even do that? Can I package freeware with paid software such as this provided I give the author due credit, links, etc? Should I contact them individualy? Thanks, Richard

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Quote:
Original post by PaulCesar
But can I even do that? Can I package freeware with paid software such as this provided I give the author due credit, links, etc? Should I contact them individualy?

Freeware or paid makes no difference, software is still covered by copyright so you can't distribute it without the copyright owners express permission, unless they have specifically placed it in the public domain. Best thing to do is to ask the authors.

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