Community mailing list archives

Re: "The way to iOdoo"

by Xavier Mallein <> - 05/15/2015 08:14:05
As a community member, I carefully read all the emails and related 
sources. May I share a resume of my understanding of the Odoo SA reasons 
for the move from AGPL to LGPL and their strategy of developing Apps as 
Odoo SA Proprietary Apps.

1/ Odoo SA is pretexting FAKE justifications to move to LGPL : the 
benefits named in their blog post "adapting-our-open-source-license" and 
linked spreadsheet are FAKE for an OpenSource advocate point of view, 
and only serve the Odoo SA Goal. 

2/ In my point of view, the TRUE Odoo SA reasons and Goal are :
- Odoo SA wants to accelerate their R&D to offer a Full ERP with 
integrated CMS and E-Commerce (there is a lot to do in R&D for CMS and 
- Odoo SA closed $10 Million in Funding to perform internal R&D and 
marketing (and will need more funding)
- Odoo SA doesn't want to give the whole source codes of their V9 Saas 
Offer with greats CMS ans E-Commerce features, because they are afraid 
about competitors being able to make same offer (based on same code) at 
lower cost. Therefore, Odoo will developp all the coming greats features 
of V9 as ODOO SA PROPRIETARY Apps. Doing this, competitors will not have 
access to these Greats ODOO SA PROPRIETARY Apps, decreasing the risk of 
competition and securing the Return On Investissement for 
- ODOO SA PROPRIETARY Apps will all be in the enterprise edition, and 
the gap between Community and Enterprise edition will very important.
- Enterprise Edition with ODOO SA PROPRIETARY Apps, requires to move the 
core code from AGPL to LGPL license.
- Odoo try to convince contributors to turn their AGPL modules into LGPL 
and give (for free) to Odoo SA wich will include them into their 
Enterprise Edition.

3/ In my point of view, the conclusion are :
- The community will only be able to play/developp on community edition, 
and will not be able to perform new modules or vertical offer (as OCA 
did) from Enterprise Edition where all the great features will be.
- Odoo SA thinks they can now continue the road alone with their 
Proprietary Apps (without AGPL modules from the community) and make a 
great proprietary software (developped internally)
- Odoo SA will focus on the big market of Small Enterprises with Sass 

4/ What is the place of the community in this future if the community 
wants to keep a strong community edition ?
- Is the community able to reduce the gap between community and 
enterprise edition, by redevelopping the proprietary apps as AGPL ? a 
lot of work...
- Is a community able to maintain a community edition, if Odoo close the 
code of the enterprise edition ? Needs a strong 
- What about the future of Vertical (as OCA did) ? is their still a 
future for industry solution based on community edition ?
- How to continue and secure a return of investissement for the 
community point of view with a non fully opensource software ?

This is a resume of my actual personnal understanding of the whole 
situation, personnal point of view and questions I wanted to share.


Le 15/05/2015 08:57, Anders Wallenquist a écrit :
> Den 2015-05-14 21:47, Alberto Barrionuevo skrev:
> > Historical contextualization: The LGPL is the most permissive license
> > created by the FSF to allow to be mixed with closed code, when the AGPL
> > is exactly the contrary, the less permissive one (so the one that better
> > warranties the freedom of the code). The FSF does not recommend to use
> > LGPL for generic code. It was intended mainly for libraries that need to
> > be included into any kind of code, open and closed one. For generic code
> > the FSF recommends GPL if it is not going to be served as cloud, and
> > AGPL (Affero GPL) if it is going to be served as cloud.
> >
> > On this point you can understand why OCA is not interested in to release
> > its modules as LGPL and was maintain them as only-AGPL. If they would
> > move to the permissive LGPL the said big corporation (including
> > Odoo,S.A.) may be able to develop and close their "Google Odoo" or
> > "Microsoft Odoo" or "iOdoo" including in its features-for-free not only
> > the Odoo S.A. code, but also all the 5.000 OCA modules.
> >
> > So with such a move any big player would be able to create a kind of
> > closed-source monster cloud Odoo service with more functionality (the
> > extension) than the current open Odoo.
> Exactly Odoo Enterprise will be a Google Docs wit absolutely no interest
> for end users that want to extend and contribute to Odoo. Odoo community
> will be weakened with out any "high end" modules (as Odoo SA thinks and
> will be marketing). Odoo SA are digging a large hole and will be buried
> in the swamp of licensed funded world with no return in sight.
> A fork at this time will create a Odoo Enterprise with the 260 original
> modules + some new closed source modules and a fork with 5000 modules as
> they are presented today. Odoo Enterprise cannot use any of the 5000
> community built modules if they not relicence to LGPL or MIT. There is
> absolutely no incitement for the common contributor to do that. Should
> an end user that has done serious contributions to Odoo delibery move to
> a crippled locked in version of the same system that they are using to day.
> As Odoo SA has weakened the ecosystem with their strange partner program
> and not so transparent development, the fork has to build a new
> leadership from ground up and start with new strategies for the product.
> I personaly don't understand how Odoo SA has the courage to make this
> move out of the free software world without serious trying to preserve
> the product and the ecosystem. With 5 % left (260 modules) there is not
> many end user that can make the transition to Odoo Enterprise. If they
> loose a large chunk of the community (it may not happen overnight but in
> a year or two) and with them a lot of their old market and functionality
> will varnish, competence  drains when their former integrators moves on
> and follows their customers. In the licence funded world this happens
> somtimes when the product owner want's a bigger share from thier
> community and tries to take over end users from integrators. For
> instance we have Jeeves doing this move in Sweden - Right know they have
> only secured 25 % of their 2000 installations  (after one year) and they
> have frightened their resellers in all other countries that they will do
> this move there too which has led to a lot of lost affairs for the
> mother company. Stupid move but initiated by decreased income from
> licences (integrators build new modules of thier own instead of sell
> Jeeves modules, we have some Jeeves installations where we adds
> Odoo-functionality instead of buying Jeeves modules). But if they not
> recognise the additions their integrator does for the whole ecosystem
> this type of mistake is easy to do.
> Regards,
> Anders Wallenquist
> >
> > As I understand Odoo,S.A. is not afraid of such a movement because it
> > have done already such an extension of rich features with its upcoming
> > closed apps in Odoo v9. So Odoo,S.A. has an advantage of 1 or 2 years on
> > the competitive development race. But anyway I perceive the movement
> > quite risky for Odoo,S.A. itself because there may be very much better
> > funded corporations that may win such a development race on the
> > medium/long term.
> >
> > Another interpretation may be that any/some important shareholder(s) or
> > bondholder(s) of Odoo,S.A. is/are interested in to open the door to
> > closed Odoo's removing the current AGPL protection to its code not for
> > the final interest of Odoo,S.A. but others one (a kind of EEE strategy [1]).
> >
> > What I've described is not anything that never happened in the FLOSS
> > history. It is exactly what Apple did doing with MacOS X, that is an
> > extension of the permissively licensed Darwing (a BSD variant actually).
> >
> > Also it is similar to what Apple did for many years forking the LGPL'ed
> > KHTML to core their Safari. Luckily, in this case, after many years of
> > community requests, finally it was renamed and released under the open
> > WebKit community and used by Safari (closed), Chromium (open), Chrome
> > (closed), KDE Rekonq (open), Opera (closed) and many others.
> >
> > Regarding the possible EEE strategy of the shareholder(s) is more or
> > less what Oracle actually did with many of the Sun Microsystem open
> > source projects (OpenOffice, MySQL, OpenSolaris, etc.), forcing at the
> > end to the community to fork all them and to create foundations as OCA
> > to manage each one.
> >
> > [Disclaimer: End of simplifications]
> >
> > Best,
> > //Alberto.
> > [1],_extend_and_extinguish
> >
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