Weekly Journal 130 - Hashicorp

Hashicorp Licensing

With all the recent activity with open source licensing, I’ve been wondering when Hashicorp was going to announce a switch to a non-free, non-open license. Apparently that was yesterday. I think the writing has been on the all for some time for this announcement, I wonder if they decided to do it now since the larger open source community is already in an uproar over the Red Hat announcement.

Hashicorp has chosen the Business Source License (BSL) as the new license for all their products. It is not an open source license under the criteria defined by the Open Source Initiative. The BSL does eventually revert to a true open source license, in this case the MPL, after a period of four years as defined by Hashicorp. However, four years means the latest truly open source version of the software will be woefully out of date compared to the current non-free release.

It’s a shame, really. I’ve generally liked the Hashicorp tools, but I don’t like them enough to take on the risk of depending on a non-free tool for something as critical as infrastructure automation.