[owncloud-devel] Using ownCloud APIs in iOS app

Jos Poortvliet jospoortvliet at gmail.com
Mon Nov 2 15:35:13 GMT 2015

On Monday 02 November 2015 12:10:40 Charles Parnot wrote:
> Hi all,
> Sorry for the newbie question. I posted it on the forum, but someone
> recommended I posted it on this mailing list instead:
> https://forum.owncloud.org/viewtopic.php?f=34&t=31273&p=100360#p100360
> My apologies if this is not the right place.
> I'd like to add support for various sync services in our iOS app, including
> Dropbox, Google Drive, etc. and maybe ownCloud (one user was interested).
> ownCloud looks like a very nice implementation of file syncing that should
> be useful in many situations where the user want to know where their data
> is. However, I am trying to understand the licensing issues, and the FAQs
> are a bit confusing in that regard, so my apologies for the dumb
> questions.
> The FAQs say:
> > Can I write closed source or proprietary apps for ownCloud?
> > Yes, but following the requirements of the under the AGPLv3, these can be
> > distributed or made available to users outside of your household or
> > organization only under the ownCloud Enterprise Edition, which supports
> > integration with proprietary technologies. Contact ownCloud, Inc. for
> > details.
> Since the iOS app would only be using the APIs, and not any code from
> ownCloud, I don't understand how the AGPL would apply (and the grammar is
> a bit weird in the above sentence, adding to my confusion). I assume AGPL
> does not apply for an iOS app using the APIs and you are talking about
> other types of apps, but I am a bit confused (yes, I use this word a lot!)
> and I want to make sure I don't get myself in trouble if I start doing
> anything ownCloud-related.
> Also, I noticed the iOS library is MIT, but the iOS app is GPL. It's too
> bad about the latter, because it probably contains a lot of code that
> would be useful for people like me that want to add support for ownCloud
> in an iOS app. Maybe there is code with another example app that could be
> useful to have support added quickly for maintaining one folder in sync
> with the local filesystem on iOS? To be fair, even Dropbox does not have
> any code like this, but I was hoping for that one user that ownCloud
> support could be added quickly... Sorry I am all whining and very
> demanding
> All in all, ownCloud seems like a very appealing solution, but it has some
> scary wording/licensing for client developers. I also fully understand if
> maybe 3rd-party apps are not part of the overall strategy, in which case
> I'd like to know before (not) getting started.

I'd appreciate feedback:

Sorry for the brainfart that is all the formatting changes, I couldn't help 
myself and only later realized I should have kept that in a separate commit.

> Thanks!
> Charles
> --
> Charles Parnot
> Your Lab Notebook, Reinvented.
> http://findingsapp.com

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