Microsoft accused of violating GPL, pulls Windows 7 tool

By on November 11, 2009, 6:30 PM
Microsoft is facing a bit of heat after being accused of using open source code in a way that violates the GNU's General Public License (GPL). The code being questioned was found by the Within Windows blog in Microsoft's Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool. Redmond has since halted distribution of the tool, saying yesterday that it was investigating the allegations.

Within Windows said Microsoft's tool appears to contain code from a utility called ImageMaster, which is licensed under GPLv2. The blog said that Microsoft did not offer or provide source code for their modifications to ImageMaster, and even more, the company tacked on some of their own licensing terms. As fun as it is to sling mud at Microsoft, the claims could be wrong, so don't jump to any conclusions.

The Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool allows users to create a bootable USB flash drive or DVD disc from an ISO image file.

User Comments: 7

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freedomthinker said:

Why is this a bad thing ?

kimsland, Ex-TechSpotter, said:


The General Public License, like other open-source licenses, allows code to be freely used by others, but has its own set of terms and conditions, such as sharing any modifications made to the code

Looks like MS violated those "terms and conditions" with large modifications

The MS specific download page is now down (pulled).

Awaiting a large financial transaction to imagemaster

OK that last sentence is crap, but probably what will happen ;)

nazartp said:

Meh. Happens to a lot of companies, quite accidentally. Some developer decided to use some program as the basis, component or a tool and was too lazy to read the licensing terms. Show of hands - how many of us read all terms and conditions for every piece of software that we use? The issue is just less common and more visible with big corporations.

tengeta tengeta said:

Crap, didn't even know there was something like that for Windows... anywhere its left still?

kimsland, Ex-TechSpotter, said:

Matthew has created a new topic here:

Guest said:

this is not the 1st time microsoft has violated the gpl.thanks to god, this got caught otherwise few years later it would have patented it.Microsoft has never innovated anything. it has not invented dos has just copied everything and had patented it.we work hard and create software so that poor people have to pay only for hardware costs and not for any software.

Guest said:

They also copied PLURK's source code.

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