[cvsnt] March-Hare message into my commit messages

Arthur Barrett arthur.barrett at march-hare.com
Fri Nov 21 12:46:22 GMT 2008

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With EVS almost done now I finally had time to reply to the last points
you made.

> > Taking the analogy a step further: Luigi (and others) appear to be 
> > suggesting
> Not at all. You choose the Open Source model, not us. 

It is perfectly valid under the GPL open source license to both charge a
fee for the distribution of the software and also to advertise within
it.  Tony and I have both recently posted to this thread indicating we
are perfectly happy with the open source model.  Are you sure you
understand what the open SOURCE model is?

> Budget constraint does not allow us to buy whatever we like 
> just to "support good development".

No - but we the developers can encourage you the user to support the
tools that may be a critical part of your infrastructure.  

You cannot 'buy' CVSNT, but you can 'pay' for it (in various ways) -
it's one of the geatest freedoms that the GPL gives people.

> Again, I am telling you how some customers perceive your 
> package. 

And that is appreciated.  Comments from other people in this thread
about the considerable value of CVS Suite are also appreciated.

> be forced somehow to buy a CVS suite, 

We are not forcing anyone.  The software is open source - you have the
source code, we have also provided ways to turn off the advertising (see

> prices, and at 4000 euro per ten users your competitors are 

At current exchance rates it's less than 2400 Euro (once you provide a
VAT Number) and is the cheapest commercial SCM on the market (when
priced over 3 years) and includes 2 hour Service Level Agreement on the
telephone support (by far the best SLA for any product costing less than
EUR5000 per user plus 15% maintenance). 

However we deliberately did not advertise 'CVS Pro' since Sales of 'CVS
Pro' are already quite healthy (we expect a smaller percentage of users
will find value in CVS Pro).  

We are advertising CVS Suite and deliberately targeting a minimum of
sales target of: 1 x 1 copy per 100 downloads.  Based on feedback in
this thread alone a higher number of those who are downloading CVSNT
will find considerable value in 1 copy of Suite.  A further percentage
of users have been using CVSNT for years and have not responded to
previous calls for users to become contributors and whilst they may not
find Suite 'more valuable' than the FOSS offering they will find it less
annoying and appreciate the continued development and FOSS support.

> Would you like some support/investment? Set up a way to 
> "donate to the project", as many OS project do. 

It is not possible for an individual or company to collect donations.
Donations are heavily regulated by governments.  If you want to
contribute - buy a copy of a product we have for sale.

> You're using Apache/PHP/Debian on your cvsnt.com server. 
> Would you like if it printed "Page generated with a free 
> version of Apache Web Server with a free version of PHP 
> on a free version of Debian operating system" on each 
> page it serves? 

I wouldn't mind at all - cvsnt.org is a free web site.  All the stable
downloads require a user visit the march-hare.com web site which runs on
a Microsfot Web server running IIS.  Regardless of the fact we wouldn't
mind such a message - we pay (actual hard cash) for the hosting of those
web sites and we trust that the companies we are paying are in turn
paying their vendors (or contributing in direct tangible ways to the
development of FOSS software).

> Why don't you pay for RedHat or SuSE to support Linux 
> development?

We do - we have these systems internally - along with Windows and HPUX
and Solaris and Mac systems all of which we need to pay actual hard cash
for (except notably HP who have generously provided us with free
hardware and software).

> > Or switch off the message (read the FAQ)
> None of the methods works yet <g>

They do in my tests - if you are running server and client you need to
turn the message off on the server and the client but the FAQ already
informs people of that.  I was just using CVSNT 2.5.04 yesterday and
there are no advertisments in my commit messages.

> As explained in a previous message, we don't have any SQL 
> Server database nor we plan to have one. 

And as I have written previously - why not contribute to the EVSCM
project and instead of telling the group what you wont use, ie: tell the
project what you will use.  We have many ideas what the next database is
that we'll support (Oracle, Postgres, Sybase) and platform (Solaris 10
Sparc, Solaris 10 Intel, HPUX 11iv3 Itanium, SLES10 x32, SLES10 x64,
RHEL5 x32, RHEL5 x64, RHEL Itanium) - and in the absence of any
constructive replies we'll make an uninformed choice.  Post to the evs
newsgroup not the cvsnt newsgroup.

Users of Free Software (like CVSNT) have a choice.  To financially
support the companies who are enhancing Free software (like CVSNT) and
not limiting your freedoms by continuing to supply all the source code
under the GPL (ie: the work Tony and March Hare have done with
changesets, acl's, mergepoints, multi-site repositories, WAN
performance, Tag/Branch performance etc etc) or only to financially
support companies who limit your freedom and wrap their products around
Free Software and thereby remove those those freedoms?

Tony and I ask people who use CVSNT for paid work to advocate for Free
Software and specfically to support Free Software with finiancial and
'in kind' contributions.  If there is some non-Free software that CVSNT
users wish to license and pay for as well then by all means they should
license it and pay for it.  But if there is free software that you rely
on for your paid work then it must be paid for as well.

Free Software is like the Free Press - newspapers still cost money.


Arthur Barrett

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