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CollabNet adds IP checker to software

Code scan on aisle six, please

Reducing security risks from open source software

Developers working on CollabNet's hosted collaboration service can now verify the intellectual property (IP) terms of their code to remain on the right side of the law.

IP start-up Palamida's IP Amplifier has been integrated into CollabNet's Application Lifecycle Manager enabling developers working in distributed projects to check the IP terms and conditions of the software components they use.

CollabNet users can click through to a web page where their code is scanned and a report generated. Palamida's service cross references a database of 100,000 open source projects, three billion code snippets, two million file digests and four million Java name space names. Palamida said users could also throw their own preferences into the mix by plugging in a custom list of components.

The first scan is free, but developers will have to pay for additional scans and reports.

Palamida hopes to attract the interest of software vendors and end-users. Developers can verify that there are no hidden licensing terms associated with open source and third-party software components used in their products.

End-users can track their use of third parties' components in distributed development projects for accurate billing and to avoid unnecessary licensing costs, in addition to also verifying the IP conditions of components used in projects.

CollabNet provides the development platform for a number of vendor-backed developer communities and end-user projects. Customers include Sun Microsystems' SunSource.net and Java.net, BEA Systems' dev2dev, Barclay Global Investors' BGI Developer Network and Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein's openadaptor.

Separately, Palamida is publishing a list of all open source and third-party components that are used in IP Amplifier, along with the associated terms and conditions. IP Amplifier contains 17 open source and one non-open source components, spanning Apache, Hibernate and Spring application frameworks.

Palamdia's vice president for business development Theresa Bui Friday reckons Palamida is taking a lead on the issue among commercial software companies. ®

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