Feeds

Microsoft admits Win 7 tool violated GPL

ImageMaster open sourced

The essential guide to IT transformation

Microsoft will soon release a Windows 7 tool under the GPL, after admitting the product violated the terms of the popular open-source license.

On Friday, the company said it will release the ImageMaster USB/DVD source code and binaries under GPLv2 next, following an internal investigation into the matter that found it had indeed violated the license.

The free tool was available for download through te Microsoft Store for customers to create bootable USB drives or DVD backup media from the electronic software edition of Windows 7.

ImageMaster had violated the GPL because it contained modified code that had been distributed without the corresponding source-code and because Microsoft had bolted on its own, restricted licensing terms.

Microsoft called the violation a mistake, and while the code had been supplied by a third party, it took responsibility for not having caught the violation during its own code review process.

The company said it has conducted a review of other code on the Microsoft Store site and found this was the only such incident. Further, Microsoft promised, it's taking measures to "apply what we have learned from this experience for future code reviews we perform."

Ironically, licensing specialist Black Duck this week reported 22 per cent of the average software product or application - or 700MB of code - contains open-source code. Black Duck surveyed 175 customers. The chances of running into GPLv2 are also high: Black Duck earlier this year reported GPLv2 accounts for 50.06 per cent of open source projects.

Company chief executive and president Tim Yeaton said in a statement organizations are using to open source to gain what he called significant competitive advantage in a "multi-source" development process. "The 'not invented here' mentality is rapidly disappearing," he said.

It seems Microsoft was unaware of this changing reality and the implications on its relationship with those outside the company building code for is products. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
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.