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I've seen that MySQL (although open source) is not really free for commercial use. Here's their reference very clearly:

In short (from what I've seen), if I am to distribute a commercial (or closed-source) program, I need to have a commercial license.

Then, how come we don't pay for our MySQL servers that are hosted online (like on our web host)? Furthermore, what if I am to make my application accessible by organisations by having it on my webhost (or own server)? Will I have to pay a license fee in this case?

Pretty confused about this and in trying to avoid any future issues, I'm trying to convert my apps to Postgres - and it's not a smooth ride up to now because of the differences...

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closed as not constructive by Journeyman Geek, BBlake, Dennis, Karan, Dave M Feb 14 '13 at 15:17

As it currently stands, this question is not a good fit for our Q&A format. We expect answers to be supported by facts, references, or expertise, but this question will likely solicit debate, arguments, polling, or extended discussion. If you feel that this question can be improved and possibly reopened, visit the help center for guidance.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

This is a question that should be directed towards a Sales Represenative for MySQL since you have questions about a commercial license. The simple explaination is that unless your hosting the server yourself, the web host, already covers any costs dealing with the license. – Ramhound Feb 14 '13 at 14:34
up vote 1 down vote accepted

If the hosting service is based on open-source services such as Linux (OS) and Apache (web), then their licenses are GPL compatible AFAIK. GPL and related open licenses don't stop you charging for a service.

If you develop you own web application. You need a commercial MySQL license if your application code is non GPL compatible. This seems open to interpretation for me (though I've only skimmed the license). Does this mean that if you run GPL'd code on a proprietary server, you are OK? I think you are.

I think that the simplest approach for you is to simply GPL your own application code, you should then be fine. You can still charge for the service, installation, support, training, etc. Using a chargeable hosting service is neither here nor there, you can recharge this - with markup, it doesn't affect the license (as long as the terms and conditions of the hosting service allow recharge of course).

Usual disclaimer applies - I am not a legal expert - if in doubt get legal advice.

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@Julian_Knight thanks a lot for your answer. I had the same idea. This is a good question for us who develop but it's unfortunate that the question was closed. – itsols Feb 14 '13 at 15:51
Ah, some of the admins are a little purist ;) The question could, perhaps have been better worded but it is always annoying that questions are closed without an explanation of how they could be improved (just the boiler text). I think that your question was a useful one and I'm happy to have responded. – Julian Knight Feb 14 '13 at 16:00

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