There are several key facts that you need to remember

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should provide an End User License Agreement (EULA) that dictates the specific terms for that particular software title. There are several key facts that you need to remember about proprietary software licensing: When you purchase this type of software, you are not purchasing the software itself. Instead, you are purchasing a license to use the software. You are not allowed to access the software's source code and make modifications. Usually, the source code is not made available to customers. A EULA does not typically allow you to reverse engineer the software to recreate the source code. The license usually only permits you to install the software on a fixed number of computers. Installation limits are commonly enforced by the software vendor using online software activation. If you try to use the same activation code too many times, the software will not activate and can't be used. Two different, general types of licenses are usually offered by software vendors: Personal licenses are intended for home and small business customers. Usually, they only allow the software to be installed on 1-3 systems. Because they are limited in the number of allowed installs, personal licenses are usually less expensive than other alternatives. However, personal licenses many not be the best choice for large organizations, which may need to purchase hundreds or even thousands of licenses for a given software title. Enterprise licenses (which are also sometimes called volume licenses ) are intended for medium and large organizations. Enterprise licenses allow the customer to install the software without restriction using the same activation code (typically until a maximum cap is reached). Because of the volume involved, the customer is usually able to purchase an enterprise license for much less than the cost of purchasing individual personal licenses. Enterprise licenses are usually too expensive for most home or small business users. Open Source Open Source software used to be exclusive to Linux and Unix operating systems. However, many Open Source applications are now available for Windows and Mac operating systems. Open Source licensing is very different from proprietary licensing: Open Source software is usually freely distributed. You can typically download, install, and use the software without paying a license fee. Most Open Source software is distributed under the GNU General Public License (GPL), which requires that the source code for the software to be freely distributable to anyone who wants it. This means you can
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download the source code for an application, modify it, recompile it, and then use the modified version of the software. In fact, you could even post it for others to use as long as you make your source code freely available as well. Organizations that release open source applications typically use a variety of means to generate revenue so they can keep developing new products: Contributions. Some Open Source projects ask you to contribute financially if you use their software.
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  • Spring '14
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