Doubling down in Open Source? An important decision!
Elastic recently announced that they are changing their software licensing strategy and from the next version of Elasticsearch (7.11 and on), they provide their software under two non-open source licenses, the Server Side Public License, which in other words means that it is no longer Open Source as it used to be from the beginning of the project until today. (You can read about open source software and Elastic Stack in our detailed article!).
It is obvious that this move raised a lot of arguments in the community of Elasticsearch. On the other hand Amazon Web Services, announced the creation and maintenance of an ALv2-licensed fork of open source Elasticsearch and Kibana!
Amazon Web Services has launched Open Distro for Elasticsearch back in 2019 and they keep 100% open source until today. They claim that the decision to fork the project was not easy, but they believe that it is the right path forward for the whole community.
How important are all these for the Elastic Stack community?
All this discussion eventually ends with the above question and more particularly “is there any benefit for the user”?
If we make a quick assessment of the new situation, we have the following: Elastic will continue to make a profit from maintaining an open-source software but without a permissive license, allowing a user to download and install it, but not allowing the commercial usage of the software (eg. SaaS). They will also continue to offer it as a Service (hosted on their servers) and also provide training. Elastic believe that restricting their license will prevent other companies from offering managed Elasticsearch services.
On the other side, AWS has the potential to create a community around it and maintain the new flavor of Open Source Elasticsearch and Kibana, called Open Distro. Along with AWS and the rest of the community, in Logstail we will continue to support this move and contribute back to Open-Source community. We are optimistic that this choice will contribute a truly open-source option for Elasticsearch and Kibana under the ALv2 license for the community.
In Logstail we believe that Open Source Software is one of the most important concepts in modern IT business. Many companies relied on Open Source and still remain profitable. No one can tell right now how this story will evolve for Elastic, but our company will continue to support the Open Source nature of ELK Stack, will build upon it, and contribute back to the community!! Our community plan (up to 500 MB/day logs) is and will remain forever free!!
Stay with us and get all the advantages of Open Source Software as a Service!