Subject: sendmail licensing again
To: None <email@example.com>
From: Mason Loring Bliss <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 12/10/1998 00:14:37
Hi again, all.
The idea of switching to using something other than sendmail as NetBSD's
main mailer has been lobbed about lately. I, personally, think that it
would be better to stick with sendmail, for a number of more or less valid
In any event, it's what most of us are the most familiar with.
It seems to me that the reason for not distributing 8.9.x with NetBSD was
that the license had a required, open-ended term for redistribution of
source code. This seems to no longer be the case.
Here's the most recent copy of the sendmail license I can find,
The following license terms and conditions apply, unless a different
license is obtained from Sendmail, Inc., 1401 Park Avenue, Emeryville, CA
94608, or by electronic mail at email@example.com.
Use, Modification and Redistribution (including distribution of any
modified or derived work) in source and binary forms is permitted only if
each of the following conditions is met:
1. Redistributions qualify as "freeware" or "Open Source Software" under
one of the following terms:
(a) Redistributions are made at no charge beyond the reasonable cost of
materials and delivery.
(b) Redistributions are accompanied by a copy of the Source Code or by an
irrevocable offer to provide a copy of the Source Code for up to three
years at the cost of materials and delivery. Such redistributions
must allow further use, modification, and redistribution of the Source
Code under substantially the same terms as this license. For the
purposes of redistribution "Source Code" means the complete source
code of sendmail including all modifications.
Other forms of redistribution are allowed only under a separate royalty-
free agreement permitting such redistribution subject to standard
commercial terms and conditions. A copy of such agreement may be
obtained from Sendmail, Inc. at the above address.
2. Redistributions of source code must retain the copyright notices as they
appear in each source code file, these license terms, and the
disclaimer/limitation of liability set forth as paragraph 6 below.
3. Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the Copyright Notice,
these license terms, and the disclaimer/limitation of liability set
forth as paragraph 6 below, in the documentation and/or other materials
provided with the distribution. For the purposes of binary distribution
the "Copyright Notice" refers to the following language:
"Copyright (c) 1998 Sendmail, Inc. All rights reserved."
4. Neither the name of Sendmail, Inc. nor the University of California nor
the names of their contributors may be used to endorse or promote
products derived from this software without specific prior written
permission. The name "sendmail" is a trademark of Sendmail, Inc.
5. All redistributions must comply with the conditions imposed by the
University of California on certain embedded code, whose copyright
notice and conditions for redistribution are as follows:
(a) Copyright (c) 1988, 1993 The Regents of the University of
California. All rights reserved.
(b) Redistribution and use in source and binary forms, with or without
modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions
(i) Redistributions of source code must retain the above copyright
notice, this list of conditions and the following disclaimer.
(ii) Redistributions in binary form must reproduce the above
copyright notice, this list of conditions and the following
disclaimer in the documentation and/or other materials provided
with the distribution.
(iii) All advertising materials mentioning features or use of this
software must display the following acknowledgement: "This
product includes software developed by the University of
California, Berkeley and its contributors."
(iv) Neither the name of the University nor the names of its
contributors may be used to endorse or promote products derived
from this software without specific prior written permission.
6. Disclaimer/Limitation of Liability: THIS SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED BY
SENDMAIL, INC. AND CONTRIBUTORS "AS IS" AND ANY EXPRESS OR IMPLIED
WARRANTIES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, THE IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF
MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE DISCLAIMED. IN
NO EVENT SHALL SENDMAIL, INC., THE REGENTS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF
CALIFORNIA OR CONTRIBUTORS BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT,
INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES (INCLUDING, BUT
NOT LIMITED TO, PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES; LOSS OF
USE, DATA, OR PROFITS; OR BUSINESS INTERRUPTION) HOWEVER CAUSED AND ON
ANY THEORY OF LIABILITY, WHETHER IN CONTRACT, STRICT LIABILITY, OR TORT
(INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE OR OTHERWISE) ARISING IN ANY WAY OUT OF THE USE OF
THIS SOFTWARE, EVEN IF ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES.
(Version 8.6, last updated 6/24/98)
I asked about this at LISA today, and it seems that both FreeBSD and OpenBSD
are using sendmail 8.9.x. Looking at the latest copy of the license, this
seems reasonable. The license is quite like the BSD license. The unlimited
term of redistribution has been excised, evidently, and my reading is that
the three-year term is optional, although this isn't completely clear to me.
In the strictest sense, taking each item in the license as being mandatory,
it still seems like it's acceptable. It's certainly no *less* acceptable,
IMHO, than the GPL, and *BSD wouldn't exist without many GPLed tools, as I
see it. (gcc floats to the top here...)
Adding the flexibility to easily use alternative mailers is a good idea, but
continuing to use sendmail as our primary mailer, and using the newer versions
of sendmail that make it easier for sites to be "good citizens" through the
automatic denial of relaying, easy use of the rbl, etc., simply strikes me
as being remarkably worthwhile.
Mason Loring Bliss..firstname.lastname@example.org...acheron.ddns.org/mason
"In the drowsy dark cave of the mind dreams build their nest with fragments
dropped from day's caravan."--Rabindranath Tagore..awake ? sleep : dream;