Feeds

Microsoft releases CE source code

Another day, another licence

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

Microsoft has made a portion of the Windows CE 3.0 available as 'shared source', as promised. Friday's announcement sees a new licence which has at the very least the virtue of simplicity.

As we pointed out in May when Craig Mundie made this pledge, CE hardware manufacturers already have access to this code; so it's a deal with no net downside for Microsoft and it's bound to garner publicity.

Commercial derivatives are a strict no-no, however. The only commercial use sanctioned by the licence is as a reference for Windows CE developers. But you're welcome to send bug-fixes back to Redmond, although we're not sure where lies the reciprocal benefit for developers. Since we thought that the whole of sharing source was to improve and embellish the code, this is a very token kind of sharing.

A less cynical gesture might have seen Microsoft release the CE source and encourage prospective garage IHVs to port CE to new platforms. Then retrospectively bless the ports. But that falls under commercial use, doesn't it?

We can't help making a comparison to Sun Microsystems much-maligned - often quite justifiably - approach to Java. For all its faults, Sun turns a blind eye to Java-compatible clones, notably HP's Chai. It isn't difficult to imagine how long a CE clone would survive.

The source is a 5MB download, and a Passport account is required. ®

Related Stories

MS to tout 'shared source philosophy', compare GNU to bubble economy
SIAA slams MS over open source claims
Microsoft torches RMS, RMS torches Caldera
Show us the source, then Mr Mundie - developers
Readers: MS is the cancer

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
China: You, Microsoft. Office-Windows 'compatibility'. You have 20 days to explain
Told to cough up more details as antitrust probe goes deeper
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.