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How to license and deploy new software?

Hello,

Just wondering if anyone can offer advice (perhaps based on
experience) on how to deploy and license a C++ based app as a
commercial library. The main questions I'm trying to answer are
whether to provide source code, a DLL, or a static lib, and what kind
of pricing scheme should be considered. The lib could be used to drive
at-home desktop UI's or interface with back-end middleware.

Thanks for your input!
Mar 17 '08 #1
5 2499
el*************@gmail.com wrote:
Just wondering if anyone can offer advice (perhaps based on
experience) on how to deploy and license a C++ based app as a
commercial library. The main questions I'm trying to answer are
whether to provide source code, a DLL, or a static lib, and what kind
of pricing scheme should be considered. The lib could be used to drive
at-home desktop UI's or interface with back-end middleware.
People often sell the source code and the DLL at different prices. We do
this for our C# FFT, for example:

http://www.ffconsultancy.com/product...rocessing_net/

Selling in source form is a liability because people can steal your code
and/or ideas much more easily but C# is just a thin veneer over .NET's
bytecode so you can decompile .NET DLLs back to C# very easily.

--
Dr Jon D Harrop, Flying Frog Consultancy Ltd.
http://www.ffconsultancy.com/products/?u
Mar 17 '08 #2
el*************@gmail.com wrote:
Just wondering if anyone can offer advice (perhaps based on
experience) on how to deploy and license a C++ based app as a
commercial library. The main questions I'm trying to answer are
whether to provide source code, a DLL, or a static lib, and what kind
of pricing scheme should be considered. The lib could be used to drive
at-home desktop UI's or interface with back-end middleware.
It is common to provide different licenses for different uses. For example:

http://trolltech.com/products/qt/licenses/licensing
Mar 17 '08 #3
On Mar 17, 1:31 am, electricalje...@gmail.com wrote:
Just wondering if anyone can offer advice (perhaps based on
experience) on how to deploy and license a C++ based app as a
commercial library. The main questions I'm trying to answer
are whether to provide source code, a DLL, or a static lib,
and what kind of pricing scheme should be considered. The lib
could be used to drive at-home desktop UI's or interface with
back-end middleware.
The same way you'd deploy and license an application written in
Ada, or any other language. Which means that the question is
off topic here. Practical considerations may lead you to
different solutions under Windows and Unix, which would make it
on topic in those groups, but the ultimate answer is: it
depends. It depends on the application domain, what you're
trying to achieve, what services you're trying to offer, etc.,
etc.

A lot of companies today give the software away, and then sell
maintenance on it. I guess they figure that once they've got
you hooked, you're going to need a lot of bug fixes, and will be
ready to pay for them. Many companies also have different
licensing arrangements depending on the customer: students don't
pay nearly as much as big companies (but may not have access to
some of the features). And even when the normal deployment is
just a library (in which case, you really should provide both a
static and a dynamically linked version, at least in most
cases), it's almost always possible to obtain the source code if
you're willing to spend enough extra money.

--
James Kanze (GABI Software) email:ja*********@gmail.com
Conseils en informatique orientée objet/
Beratung in objektorientierter Datenverarbeitung
9 place Sémard, 78210 St.-Cyr-l'École, France, +33 (0)1 30 23 00 34
Mar 17 '08 #4
On Sun, 16 Mar 2008 17:31:59 -0700, electricaljello wrote:
Hello,

Just wondering if anyone can offer advice (perhaps based on experience)
on how to deploy and license a C++ based app as a commercial library.
The main questions I'm trying to answer are whether to provide source
code, a DLL, or a static lib, and what kind of pricing scheme should be
considered. The lib could be used to drive at-home desktop UI's or
interface with back-end middleware.

Thanks for your input!
It's also common to have per-user/per-machine type licenses where the end
user must buy a separate license for each machine they use it on.

Matt
Mar 17 '08 #5
On Mar 17, 4:50 am, James Kanze <james.ka...@gmail.comwrote:
On Mar 17, 1:31 am, electricalje...@gmail.com wrote:
Just wondering if anyone can offer advice (perhaps based on
experience) on how to deploy and license a C++ based app as a
commercial library. The main questions I'm trying to answer
are whether to provide source code, a DLL, or a static lib,
and what kind of pricing scheme should be considered. The lib
could be used to drive at-home desktop UI's or interface with
back-end middleware.

The same way you'd deploy and license an application written in
Ada, or any other language. Which means that the question is
off topic here. Practical considerations may lead you to
different solutions under Windows and Unix, which would make it
on topic in those groups, but the ultimate answer is: it
depends. It depends on the application domain, what you're
trying to achieve, what services you're trying to offer, etc.,
etc.

A lot of companies today give the software away, and then sell
maintenance on it. I guess they figure that once they've got
you hooked, you're going to need a lot of bug fixes, and will be
ready to pay for them. Many companies also have different
licensing arrangements depending on the customer: students don't
pay nearly as much as big companies (but may not have access to
some of the features). And even when the normal deployment is
just a library (in which case, you really should provide both a
static and a dynamically linked version, at least in most
cases), it's almost always possible to obtain the source code if
you're willing to spend enough extra money.

--
James Kanze (GABI Software) email:james.ka...@gmail.com
Conseils en informatique orientée objet/
Beratung in objektorientierter Datenverarbeitung
9 place Sémard, 78210 St.-Cyr-l'École, France, +33 (0)1 30 23 00 34
Hi all,

Thanks for the input. Are static libs as easily reverse engineered as
DLL's?

Also, when companies give away the software hoping for maintenance, do
they make it available for free download off a website then have a
separate link for the services, or is there actually marketing
involved and formal contracts are written up once a client has
communicated interest?

EJ
Mar 18 '08 #6

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