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FantasyVI

how do i know which librarys are for commercial project?

16 posts in this topic

Hello
I'm developing a game and its almost done and i would like to sell it. I was just wounding how can I tell if the library's I'm using are for commercial project use or not ? Also in the future how can i tell if a certain library or code is for commercial projects or not ?
Also there are a lot of license out there why?

can I use those library/API for commercial projects?

1-libjpeg
2-libpng
3-SFML
4-OpenAL
5-OpenGL

thank you for your help.
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[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322658108' post='4889040']
Hello
I'm developing a game and its almost done and i would like to sell it. I was just wounding how can I tell if the library's I'm using are for commercial project use or not ? Also in the future how can i tell if a certain library or code is for commercial projects or not ?
Also there are a lot of license out there why?

can I use those library/API for commercial projects?

1-libjpeg
2-libpng
3-SFML
4-OpenAL
5-OpenGL

thank you for your help.
[/quote]

read the licenses:

libjpg
[quote]
LEGAL ISSUES ============ In plain English: 1. We don't promise that this software works. (But if you find any bugs, please let us know!) 2. You can use this software for whatever you want. You don't have to pay us. 3. You may not pretend that you wrote this software. If you use it in a program, you must acknowledge somewhere in your documentation that you've used the IJG code.
[/quote]

libpng:
[url="http://libpng.org/pub/png/src/libpng-LICENSE.txt"]http://libpng.org/pu...png-LICENSE.txt[/url] (If you redistribute the sourcecode there are some things to keep in mind)

SFML:
[url="http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php"]http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php[/url] (Basically the same as for libpng)

OpenAL:
Depends on version, prior to 1.1 it is LGPL (Which you can use for commercial works as long as the end user is able to replace or modify the OpenAL library (This means you can't use it on some locked down platforms)), after 1.1 it is a proprietary license which is shown when you run the installer.
OpenGL:
Depends on implementation, in most cases you will not distribute the implementation so it is irrelevant.
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[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322658108' post='4889040']
Hello
I'm developing a game and its almost done and i would like to sell it. I was just wounding how can I tell if the library's I'm using are for commercial project use or not ? Also in the future how can i tell if a certain library or code is for commercial projects or not ?
Also there are a lot of license out there why?

can I use those library/API for commercial projects?

1-libjpeg
2-libpng
3-SFML
4-OpenAL
5-OpenGL

thank you for your help.
[/quote]
Each library should contain some kind of license, often displayed when installing the lib. Atleast it should be contained somewhere in the lib-package you have downloaded/installed/unzipped or on the website.

By the way, more dangerous are some licenses like GPL or LGPL, which are seen as viral licenses and can hurt your purpose, so read these licenses really carefully !

When you want to sell your project, you need some kind of EULA. Instead of writing your own EULA you should create one in coporation with a laywer. He should take a look at all the licenses you incoparated into your software.
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[quote name='SimonForsman' timestamp='1322659088' post='4889048']
SFML:
[url="http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php"]http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php[/url] (Basically the same as for libpng)
[/quote]
This license regards only the SFML code, doesn't it ? Doesn't SFML use several external libs with their own licenses ?
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[quote name='Ashaman73' timestamp='1322659418' post='4889050']
[quote name='SimonForsman' timestamp='1322659088' post='4889048']
SFML:
[url="http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php"]http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php[/url] (Basically the same as for libpng)
[/quote]
This license regards only the SFML code, doesn't it ? Doesn't SFML use several external libs with their own licenses ?
[/quote]

True:
[quote]
[list][*][b]GLEW[/b] is under the [url="http://www.opensource.org/licenses/bsd-license.php"]BSD license[/url], the [url="http://glew.sourceforge.net/sgi.txt"]SGI license[/url] or the [url="http://glew.sourceforge.net/glx.txt"]GLX license[/url][*][b]OpenAL-Soft[/b] is under the [url="http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/lesser.html"]LGPL license[/url][*][b]libsndfile[/b] is under the [url="http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/lesser.html"]LGPL license[/url][*][b]stb_vorbis[/b] is public domain[*][b]libjpeg[/b] is public domain[*][b]libpng[/b] is under the [url="http://www.libpng.org/pub/png/src/libpng-LICENSE.txt"]zlib/png license[/url][*][b]zlib[/b] is under the [url="http://www.zlib.net/zlib_license.html"]zlib/png license[/url][*][b]SOIL[/b] is public domain[*][b]freetype[/b] is under the [url="http://www.freetype.org/FTL.TXT"]FreeType license[/url] or the [url="http://www.freetype.org/GPL.TXT"]GPL license[/url][/list][/quote]

I don't know how SFML works as i've never used it but it shouldn't be difficult to strip out any external libraries with an unsuitable license.
(The big potential problems are OpenAL-Soft and libsndfile if you are targeting for example iOS)
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ok isn't just easier to just use SFML (1 library) with OpenGL to load Images, Audio etc.. instead of using 10 library's?

another thing SFML say
"SFML is completely [b]free for any use[/b], commercial or not, open-source or not. That is, you can use SFML API in your project [b]without any restriction[/b]."
so that means i can use SFML and when i want to sell my game just make a readme.txt and say in it that i used SFML in my project.

also one more thing, will there be a performance difference between one software that uses 10 library's and another software that uses only 1 library ?
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[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322661343' post='4889059']
ok isn't just easier to just use SFML (1 library) with OpenGL to load Images, Audio etc.. instead of using 10 library's?

another thing SFML say
"SFML is completely [b]free for any use[/b], commercial or not, open-source or not. That is, you can use SFML API in your project [b]without any restriction[/b]."
so that means i can use SFML and when i want to sell my game just make a readme.txt and say in it that i used SFML in my project.

also one more thing, will there be a performance difference between one software that uses 10 library's and another software that uses only 1 library ?
[/quote]
As far as I understand, the problem with SFML is, that it is partly a wrapper. SFML (optionally) uses for example OpenAL-soft implementation to enable sound support. So, the SFML wrapper code is free, but the used OpenAL-soft lib can only be used under the LGPL license (normally a 'wrapper' license can't [u]overwrite[/u] the license of used libs).

That is, you can use SFML with its very liberate license, but it could happen, that you can't use all features of it, when you want to avoid certain sub licenses like the LGPL (i.e. sound will not work on all devices etc.)

I, for one, keep away from LGPL/GPL licenses after talking to my lawyer (the viral nature of these licenses could be difficult). An other issue is, that most licenses are written under US law, when your are living in an other country (i.e. EU) , these licenses could have an other interpretation. This (and other issues..) was the reason I got rid off SDL and OpenAL and reimplemented it using standard Win-APIs, sometimes you incoparate a lib but only use a very small portion of it ...

But this is only my personal reaction to LGPL licenses. The best advice I could give sofar is, check what library you really need and finally talk to a lawyer.
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[quote name='Ashaman73' timestamp='1322721719' post='4889325']
[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322661343' post='4889059']
ok isn't just easier to just use SFML (1 library) with OpenGL to load Images, Audio etc.. instead of using 10 library's?

another thing SFML say
"SFML is completely [b]free for any use[/b], commercial or not, open-source or not. That is, you can use SFML API in your project [b]without any restriction[/b]."
so that means i can use SFML and when i want to sell my game just make a readme.txt and say in it that i used SFML in my project.

also one more thing, will there be a performance difference between one software that uses 10 library's and another software that uses only 1 library ?
[/quote]
As far as I understand, the problem with SFML is, that it is partly a wrapper. SFML (optionally) uses for example OpenAL-soft implementation to enable sound support. So, the SFML wrapper code is free, but the used OpenAL-soft lib can only be used under the LGPL license (normally a 'wrapper' license can't [u]overwrite[/u] the license of used libs).

That is, you can use SFML with its very liberate license, but it could happen, that you can't use all features of it, when you want to avoid certain sub licenses like the LGPL (i.e. sound will not work on all devices etc.)

I, for one, keep away from LGPL/GPL licenses after talking to my lawyer (the viral nature of these licenses could be difficult). An other issue is, that most licenses are written under US law, when your are living in an other country (i.e. EU) , these licenses could have an other interpretation. This (and other issues..) was the reason I got rid off SDL and OpenAL and reimplemented it using standard Win-APIs, sometimes you incoparate a lib but only use a very small portion of it ...

But this is only my personal reaction to LGPL licenses. The best advice I could give sofar is, check what library you really need and finally talk to a lawyer.
[/quote]

oh my god why is this so complicated -_-
ok so what is the worst thing that might happen if you use SFML for example and sell your game?
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IANAL But have read a few of these licenses (I always do that before I start using them), the worst case with GPL is that you have to open up your source code for everyone to see. If I remember correctly, this happened to a manufacturer of routers a while back.
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[quote name='Ron AF Greve' timestamp='1322739972' post='4889376']
IANAL But have read a few of these licenses (I always do that before I start using them), the worst case with GPL is that you have to open up your source code for everyone to see. If I remember correctly, this happened to a manufacturer of routers a while back.
[/quote]

None of the libraries use the GPL though, (The LGPL is quite significantly different), the worst case is that you have to release any improvements you made to the libraries themselves or stop distributing the software, potentially you might also have to pay the copyright holder.

The worst thing that can happen though is that he gets sued for copyright infringement, (Most opensource developers are fairly calm about it though and will try to help you comply with the license rather than taking you to court over it, but they do have the right to sue your ass off and will win if you fail to or refuse to comply with the license)
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[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322737509' post='4889370']
[quote name='Ashaman73' timestamp='1322721719' post='4889325']
[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322661343' post='4889059']
ok isn't just easier to just use SFML (1 library) with OpenGL to load Images, Audio etc.. instead of using 10 library's?

another thing SFML say
"SFML is completely [b]free for any use[/b], commercial or not, open-source or not. That is, you can use SFML API in your project [b]without any restriction[/b]."
so that means i can use SFML and when i want to sell my game just make a readme.txt and say in it that i used SFML in my project.

also one more thing, will there be a performance difference between one software that uses 10 library's and another software that uses only 1 library ?
[/quote]
As far as I understand, the problem with SFML is, that it is partly a wrapper. SFML (optionally) uses for example OpenAL-soft implementation to enable sound support. So, the SFML wrapper code is free, but the used OpenAL-soft lib can only be used under the LGPL license (normally a 'wrapper' license can't [u]overwrite[/u] the license of used libs).

That is, you can use SFML with its very liberate license, but it could happen, that you can't use all features of it, when you want to avoid certain sub licenses like the LGPL (i.e. sound will not work on all devices etc.)

I, for one, keep away from LGPL/GPL licenses after talking to my lawyer (the viral nature of these licenses could be difficult). An other issue is, that most licenses are written under US law, when your are living in an other country (i.e. EU) , these licenses could have an other interpretation. This (and other issues..) was the reason I got rid off SDL and OpenAL and reimplemented it using standard Win-APIs, sometimes you incoparate a lib but only use a very small portion of it ...

But this is only my personal reaction to LGPL licenses. The best advice I could give sofar is, check what library you really need and finally talk to a lawyer.
[/quote]

oh my god why is this so complicated -_-
ok so what is the worst thing that might happen if you use SFML for example and sell your game?
[/quote]
Nothing if you comply with the rules, which is a fairly trivial part of selling a game.
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Yeah, but complying with the rules is not that easy. You have to read all the licenses and some projects use other libraries and you have to go through them too. And you have to read very carefully, if you include the wrong one, you either have to open (GPL) or anything could happen if you include a propietary one (in practice that could mean that you loose money you've earned with the game (and more) if it really starts to sell well).
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so what there is no hope for an indie game developer to make games !!!! if you are offering free code for people to use why in gods name do you need a license for it ?!!! ITS FREE CODE !!!

isn't this license enough to use all of SML library features ?
I do intend to write in my code and game that this software used SFML and OpenGL isn't that enough.

SFML License
"
SFML - Copyright (c) 2007-2008 Laurent Gomila This software is provided 'as-is', without any express or implied warranty. In no event will the authors be held liable for any damages arising from the use of this software. Permission is granted to anyone to use this software for any purpose, including commercial applications, and to alter it and redistribute it freely, subject to the following restrictions: 1. The origin of this software must not be misrepresented; you must not claim that you wrote the original software. If you use this software in a product, an acknowledgment in the product documentation would be appreciated but is not required. 2. Altered source versions must be plainly marked as such, and must not be misrepresented as being the original software. 3. This notice may not be removed or altered from any source distribution."

[b]External libraries used by SFML[/b]
[list][*][b]GLEW[/b] is under the [url="http://www.opensource.org/licenses/bsd-license.php"]BSD license[/url], the [url="http://glew.sourceforge.net/sgi.txt"]SGI license[/url] or the [url="http://glew.sourceforge.net/glx.txt"]GLX license[/url][*][b]OpenAL-Soft[/b] is under the [url="http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/lesser.html"]LGPL license[/url][*][b]libsndfile[/b] is under the [url="http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/lesser.html"]LGPL license[/url][*][b]stb_vorbis[/b] is public domain[*][b]libjpeg[/b] is public domain[*][b]libpng[/b] is under the [url="http://www.libpng.org/pub/png/src/libpng-LICENSE.txt"]zlib/png license[/url][*][b]zlib[/b] is under the [url="http://www.zlib.net/zlib_license.html"]zlib/png license[/url][*][b]SOIL[/b] is public domain[*][b]freetype[/b] is under the [url="http://www.freetype.org/FTL.TXT"]FreeType license[/url] or the [url="http://www.freetype.org/GPL.TXT"]GPL license[/url][/list]
http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php

thank you guys for everything.

just what do i have to do to not get sued and spend all my money on lawyers?
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I think you have to read them yourself and read them well (that's what I did). However I use:

vorbis
png
jpeg (not the intel jpeg)
zlib
freetype

So I considered (but I might be wrong) those safe to use. I also use OpenAL, but reading this thread I think I have to reread it's license. I thought it was ok as long as you used the DLL.

Additonal libraries (which I thought were also safe to include):
expat
speex

Yet, I am no lawyer and this is not legal advice.
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[quote name='Ron AF Greve' timestamp='1322744912' post='4889391']
Yeah, but complying with the rules is not that easy. You have to read all the licenses and some projects use other libraries and you have to go through them too. And you have to read very carefully, if you include the wrong one, you either have to open (GPL) or anything could happen if you include a propietary one (in practice that could mean that you loose money you've earned with the game (and more) if it really starts to sell well).
[/quote]
If you are doing games for anything more than a hobby, then you are doing it as a [i]business[/i]. Checking a few proprietary licensees is trivial one day work (if there are a lot of them that is, otherwise it's done before lunch time) and any common (ZLib, GPL, LGPL et al) are very easy to know by hand the most common pitfalls (and if you need more than that, get a lawyer to check it for you - it doesn't cost [i]that [/i]much).

[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322747294' post='4889400']
so what there is no hope for an indie game developer to make games !!!! if you are offering free code for people to use why in gods name do you need a license for it ?!!! ITS FREE CODE !!!
[/quote]
Because nothing in this world is absolutely, unconditionally, free. This is free as in 'free beer' but it happens to come with a sticker on it saying 'read me' - perhaps you ought to do just that...
[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322747294' post='4889400']
isn't this license enough to use all of SML library features ?
I do intend to write in my code and game that this software used SFML and OpenGL isn't that enough.
[/quote]
No. It's enough to use all of SFML [i]except [/i]where it includes other libraries for specific features (e.g. JPEG).
[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322747294' post='4889400']
SFML License
"
SFML - Copyright © 2007-2008 Laurent Gomila This software is provided 'as-is', without any express or implied warranty. In no event will the authors be held liable for any damages arising from the use of this software. Permission is granted to anyone to use this software for any purpose, including commercial applications, and to alter it and redistribute it freely, subject to the following restrictions: 1. The origin of this software must not be misrepresented; you must not claim that you wrote the original software. If you use this software in a product, an acknowledgment in the product documentation would be appreciated but is not required. 2. Altered source versions must be plainly marked as such, and must not be misrepresented as being the original software. 3. This notice may not be removed or altered from any source distribution."
[/quote]
There ya go - that's all you need for SFML. Now go find out what other libraries you are including and find the license for them below (which they even include in a nice little list - how thoughtful of them; no need for you to do the five second google search!)
[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322747294' post='4889400']
[b]External libraries used by SFML[/b]
[list][*][b]GLEW[/b] is under the [url="http://www.opensource.org/licenses/bsd-license.php"]BSD license[/url], the [url="http://glew.sourceforge.net/sgi.txt"]SGI license[/url] or the [url="http://glew.sourceforge.net/glx.txt"]GLX license[/url][*][b]OpenAL-Soft[/b] is under the [url="http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/lesser.html"]LGPL license[/url][*][b]libsndfile[/b] is under the [url="http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/lesser.html"]LGPL license[/url][*][b]stb_vorbis[/b] is public domain[*][b]libjpeg[/b] is public domain[*][b]libpng[/b] is under the [url="http://www.libpng.org/pub/png/src/libpng-LICENSE.txt"]zlib/png license[/url][*][b]zlib[/b] is under the [url="http://www.zlib.net/zlib_license.html"]zlib/png license[/url][*][b]SOIL[/b] is public domain[*][b]freetype[/b] is under the [url="http://www.freetype.org/FTL.TXT"]FreeType license[/url] or the [url="http://www.freetype.org/GPL.TXT"]GPL license[/url][/list]
[url="http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php"]http://www.sfml-dev.org/license.php[/url]

thank you guys for everything.
[/quote]
Yes, so per above - which ones of the above are you using? Give a list or we can't give you a proper answer.
[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322747294' post='4889400']
just what do i have to do to not get sued and spend all my money on lawyers?
[/quote]
You have to comply with the rules (license in this case). This is not complex stuff. Filing taxes is a [i]nightmare [/i]in comparison (and you [i]do [/i]intend to file taxes if you are selling games, right?) :)
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[quote name='DarklyDreaming' timestamp='1322748171' post='4889404']
[i]do [/i]intend to file taxes if you are selling games, right? :)
[/quote]


well i don't think i have to pay any taxes because i live in UAE - Dubai, and we don't have taxes in Dubai as far as i know.
i think I'll ask my dads lawyer and see. after all I'm just 19.

anyways thank you all guys for the help it really meant a lot. :)
I'm going now spend the next hour reading licenses instead of spending time on Deving my game -__- that should be fun.

thanks again :)
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[quote name='FantasyVI' timestamp='1322749467' post='4889410']
[quote name='DarklyDreaming' timestamp='1322748171' post='4889404']
[i]do [/i]intend to file taxes if you are selling games, right? :)
[/quote]


well i don't think i have to pay any taxes because i live in UAE - Dubai, and we don't have taxes in Dubai as far as i know.
i think I'll ask my dads lawyer and see. after all I'm just 19.
[/quote]
I signed my first (legally binding) agreement when I was fourteen, started filling taxes when I was [i]sixteen [/i]and had my first internship shortly after I became seventeen - now I'm eighteen, have my own company, and finishing up my first semi-large production and fourth commercial game. Age has nothing (or little) to do with what you can (and cannot) do and what you have to (or not) do.

Don't use your age as an excuse to avoid 'business stuff' - that'll end up in a world of hurt. If you don't want to do business, [i]then get someone to handle the business side[/i].

Best of luck and cheers! :)
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