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non-GPL License for Plug-ins


I went through the documentation on plugin development for openfire.

And I came across “licenseType” element in plugin.xml. The documentation reads that it can have multiple values - “commercial”, “gpl”, “apache” etc.

I have a basic question – wouldn’t writing a plugin mean a tight coupling with openfire, and require that the license be published under GPL only (since openfire is under GPL).

I am need of this clarification because one of my clients wants to use Openfire but (at least now) he is hesitant to release the plugin in open domain.

Thanks in advance.

Happy Hacking,

Gaurav Vaish


Hi Gaurav,

I may quote http://www.igniterealtime.org/builds/openfire/docs/latest/documentation/plugin-d ev-guide.html

“Because Openfire is released under the Open Source GPL license, any plugins developed must also be released under the GPL or a compatible Open Source license if you distribute the plugins outside your organization. It is a violation of the license agreement to create plugins for distribution that are not Open Source. Please visit Jive Software if you need different licensing terms for Openfire, including the right to create commercial plugins.”

As long as your customer wants to write and use a private plugin there should be no problem. Does he want to distribute the plugin?


No… at least now.

But I foresee him doing that. And that’s why I’m “educating” them about the “power” of opensource

Tell me one more thing… if one, however, works only with the Smack API and extensions (available under Apache License) then what happpens?

Happy Hacking,



Message was edited by: Gaurav Vaish. Added question related to Smack API and extensions.