Patent Grant

Andrew Haley aph at
Tue Nov 22 17:17:15 UTC 2011

On 11/21/2011 12:34 PM, Jonathan Tripathy wrote:

> I'm aware that OpenJDK is released under the GPLv2, which has an 
> implicit patent grant. However I'm curious about the explicit patent 
> grant given by Oracle when an implementation passed the TCK test.
> I'm aware that OpenJDK has passed the Community TCK tests (Which doesn't 
> have any field of use clauses). Does this mean that an explicit patent 
> grant is given to OpenJDK?

OpenJDK per se hasn't passed the Community TCK tests; some releases
built from OpenJDK source code have.  This is an important

> The  grant is here:
> My concerns are with this paragraph:
> 5. Definitions. For the purposes of this Agreement: "Independent 
> Implementation" shall mean an implementation of the Specification that 
> neither derives from any of Sun's source code or binary code materials 
> nor, except with an appropriate and separate license from Sun, includes 
> any of Sun's source code or binary code materials
> OpenJDK is obviously Sun's code, so I'm a little confused here. Does 
> this mean the patent grant doesn't apply? Or maybe the GPLv2 is the 
> "appropriate and separate license".

You'll only get the usual reply, I'm afraid.  We are not lawyers, and
any legal advice you receive from us is worthless.

Nevertheless, this looks like the general Java licence for
implementers, rather than the OpenJDK licence.  And clearly OpenJDK is
not an implementation that does not derive from Sun's source code.


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