Microsoft confirms GPL code use

November 16, 2009 | 10:07

Tags: #gnu-general-public-license #gpl #imagemaster #windows-7-usbdvd-download-tool

Companies: #microsoft #open-source

Microsoft's Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool, which was removed from the site following allegations it used GPL-licensed code without permissions, is to be re-instated - only this time it's bringing its source code along for the ride.

In a post to Port 25, the company's open-source website - via iTWire - Microsoft confirmed that the utility did indeed contain code cribbed from the ImageMaster open-source project originally licensed under the GNU General Public Licence v2.

In mitigation, Microsoft's open-source community manager Peter Galli blames " a third party" which was contracted to create the utility on Microsoft's behalf, although admits that the company shares responsibility for the foul-up "as we did not catch it as part of our code review process."

Galli goes on to state that his company's intentions are to "aim is to be respectful of the terms under which that [third party] code is being shared," and has confirmed that once the tool is made available for download once more "we will be making the source code as well as binaries [...] available next week under the terms of the General Public License v2."

Galli also states that the company has "conducted a review of other code provided through the Microsoft Store and this was the only incident of this sort we could find."

Do you think that Microsoft is doing the right thing by adhering to the terms of the GNU General Public Licence, or should it be worried about lax standards that allowed the GPL code to be used in the first place? Share your thoughts over in the forums.
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