Microsoft made good on its promise to offer .Net Framework 3.5 source code this week, three months after Scott Guthrie, a general manager within the Microsoft Developer division, posted Microsoft’s intent on his blog. The source code to classes such as System, IO, Windows.Forms, and others is now viewable from within Visual Studio. When the announcement was first made, however, some developers viewed it as a Pandora’s Box because the source code would be released under a “Reference” license, which meant developers could view the code but not use or modify it. On Wednesday Guthrie revealed a small change in the licensing which addresses those concerns:
“We made a small change to the license to specifically call out that the license does not apply to users developing software for a non-Windows platform that has ‘the same or substantially the same features or functionality’ as the .NET Framework,” he wrote. “If the software you are developing is for Windows platforms, you can look at the code, even if that software has ‘the same or substantially the same features or functionality’ as the .NET Framework.”
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