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08 January 2013, 16:10

VMware stakes IP claim on Vert.x

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Vert.x icon Recent moves by VMware have caused "uncertainty in the Vert.x community", as the company has staked its claim on the project. When Vert.x, the asynchronous framework for Java and other JVM based languages, was launched in May 2012, Tim Fox, a VMware employee and project lead, described the project as "a community project sponsored by VMware".

Upon leaving VMware at the end of December and starting at Red Hat, Fox had expected to continue administering the Vert.x project after he left their employment. It appears though, that VMware's lawyers had a different plan and turned up on Fox's door in person with a letter demanding he gave up all administrative rights of the Vert.x GitHub project, Google group, domain and Vert.x blog. Fox says the company refused his proposal that it grant him a licence to continue to use the Vert.x trademark and domain.

After talks between VMware and Red Hat, Fox has been legally obliged to avoid litigation by transferring ownership of the GitHub project, Google group, domain and blog to VMware. "I am very concerned about this turn of events, as I understand it creates uncertainty in the Vert.x community", says Fox in a posting to the project's Google group.

Fox says that he will continue to lead the community "the best I can under these restrictions", but has asked the community to consider the future and how to take the Vert.x project forward. Already some community members are calling for a fork of the project; this would be relatively simple given that Vert.x is under an Apache 2.0 licence, though it would involve renaming the code base and project.

The H has reached out to VMware for its position on the future of Vert.X.

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