CableLabs OpenCable Project on java.net FAQ  

Open Source GPL 2 Licensing

  1. What license did you choose to distribute OCAP-RI source under? 

    We have chosen the Gnu Public License v.2 (GPLv2) for the OCAP-RI source code that is provided on java.net. The OCAP-RI is also made available under a parallel commercial license.

  2. Is GPL v2 an open-source license? 

    Yes, it is one of the most commonly used Open Source Licenses.  For a copy of the license and more information, see http://www.opensource.org/licenses/gpl-2.0.php and http://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/gpl-2.0.html

  3. Why did you choose this licensing method? 

    This is the licensing paradigm used within the family of Java technologies, including the Java Mobile and Embedded reference implementation and the Phone ME JVM. We chose the same licensing method to allow easy collaboration with these existing communities.

  4. What is Licensed and How? 

    The overall reference implementation to the OpenCable Application Platform specification (OCAP RI) is licensed under a free/open source software license, the Gnu Public License v. 2 (GPLv2).  GPL2 is the most common open source license and is the license used by the PhoneME Community, including the underlying PhoneME JVM. Other source code is also included in the package. See licenses and notices for more information.

  5. MPEG-2 MPEG-4 Implementations

    Only an MPEG-2 software decoder implementation is included in the OCAP Reference Implementation. Currently there is no support for MPEG-4 video decode. CableLabs has implemented, licensed, and paid for the required MPEG licenses for a single PC platform. Any additional copies, as well as the distribution of commercial products based on this OCAP Reference Implementation require a separate license. Please contact MPEG Licensing Authority at MPEGLA.com.

  6. Why is CableLabs distributing the OCAP RI under an open source license? 

    Providing the OCAP RI project as an open source project helps CableLabs reach the following goals:

    This platform provides cable operators, OCAP stack developers, application developers, and content providers exciting interactive tools to create interactive services for cable customers.  By providing the platform as open source, innovators have free access to the source code to learn about how best to innovate in this environment.

  7. How can I use the source code? 

    The terms of the GPLv2 license grants you the right to download, review, and make changes to the source code.  If you wish to redistribute your changes, you are bound by the additional conditions of the GPL license.  This includes a requirement to provide access to the modified source code.   Please make sure to confer with your legal counsel to make sure you comply with this and other conditions the GPL license requires.  

  8. How does open source benefit the cable operators? 

    Providing the OCAP RI project as an open source project allows cable operators to share common bug fixes and enhancements for the platform, and lets them focus more on services that they develop as applications on top of the OpenCable platform.

  9. How does open source benefit OCAP stack developers? 

    Providing the OCAP RI to stack developers allows them to access source code to see a working example of how the OpenCable OCAP specification is interpreted and can be implemented.  This will create a consistent stable platform.  The OCAP RI is also tested against the CableLabs suite of tests used for product certification purposes.

  10. How does open source benefit application writers? 

    The PC-based OCAP RI platform and tru2way SDK provide application developers with tools to develop applications without the need for connecting to a live cable plant. Providing source code to the platform provides insight to developers to debug their applications, and to find and debug bugs in the underlying platform. This will lead to a stable platform and better applications.

  11. Is there an option to use this code under an alternate license? 

    Yes. CableLabs offers a commercial license to the code owned or controlled by CableLabs at no cost. Contactoc-mail@cablelabs.com regarding inquiries about the commercial license. A separate commercial license to the underlying PhoneME JVM will also need to be arranged with Sun or its licensees.

  12. How do I know what license to use?

    Source code licensing is a complex issue.  If you are unfamiliar with open source projects or licenses in the past, you should discuss your options with your company’s legal counsel.

  13. Is the Reference Implementation required for CableLabs Certification?

    No.  The Reference Implementation is one instance of OCAP that complies with the OCAP TCK; other instances that comply with the TCK may also exist and be Certified on a OpenCable Host Device. In all cases, an OpenCable Host Device must pass all of the applicable tests and otherwise comply with the applicable OpenCable specifications. See http://www.opencable.com/ and http://www.cablelabs.com/certqual/ for more information.

  14. What licenses do I need for a commercial device that supports OCAP?

    OCAP is the middleware component of an OpenCable Host Device (or, commercially known as a “tru2way” device). OpenCable Host Devices require certain patented technology, and digital certificates for security purposes. The tru2way Host Device License Agreement provides the manufacturer a license to the required patented technology, as well a license to implement the OCAP Specification, certain OCAP Code (stubs, javadocs, etc), the OCAP TCK and the OCAP ATE (Automated Test Environment). The Digital Certificate Authorization Agreement(DCAA) provides the manufacturer the required digital certificates to authenticate the device to the cable plant/CableCARD: an OpenCable host device certificate, a DSG cable modem device certificate, and a code verification certificate for the embedded code. Additional third party intellectual property and licenses may also be required (e.g., MPEG-2, MPEG-4, Dolby, Macrovision, OCAP patent Pool, etc.); please review the specifications and consult your legal counsel.

  15. JVM and JavaTV

  16. Where can I find the source code for the JVM used by the OCAP-RI? 

    The SVN repository on the OCAP-RI project on java.net contains GPL source code for the basic phoneME Advance MR2 JVM plus changes to add the necessary enhancements to support the OCAP RI.  You may use the source code in the OCAP-RI repository under CableLabs GPL terms.

    Periodically we update the phoneME Advance MR2 JVM in the OCAP-RI SVN repository, based on the latest source code from the phoneME project.  Be aware that at any given time there may be some differences between the two source code repositories, in addition to our OCAP RI changes. Due to the nature of those changes, it is not currently possible to automate the update process.

  17. How do I license the JVM used by the OCAP-RI? 

    The JVM source code in the OCAP-RI SVN repository is available under CableLabs GPL terms as defined in the source code headers.  For commercial use of the JVM, a commercial license must be obtained from Sun (or its licensees).

    Distribution of the JVM for commercial use must be compliant with the applicable TCKs.  No intellectual property rights are granted hereunder by Sun or CableLabs for distribution for commercial use of non-compliant JVM implementations.

  18. Where can I find the source code for javaTV used by the OCAP-RI? 

    The SVN repository on the OCAP-RI project on java.net contains the javaTV source code written by the CableLabs engineers.  You may use the javaTV source code in the OCAP-RI repository under CableLabs GPL terms.   

  19. How do I license the javaTV source code used by the OCAP-RI? 

    The javaTV source code in the OCAP-RI SVN repository is available under CableLabs GPL terms as defined in the source code headers.  A commercial license is also available for JavaTV from CableLabs under the OCAP RI Commercial license agreement. Contact oc-mail@cablelabs.com regarding inquiries about the commercial license. Distribution of the JavaTV for commercial use must be compliant with the applicable TCKs.  No intellectual property rights are granted hereunder by Sun or CableLabs for distribution for commercial use of non-compliant JavaTV implementations.