Q's about distributing a server from the Minecraft Teacher

Discussion in 'Bukkit Discussion' started by JoelNYC, May 25, 2011.

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    tl;dr version: Can I zip up my entire server and distribute it, plugins and all?

    Hello everyone. I have a question about licensing and distribution of Craftbukkit and various plugins. I have never paid much attention to licenses or GPL issues until now, and I'm rather lost.

    I am the so-called Minecraft Teacher that has gotten some publicity lately in the Minecraft community for using the game with my students. I use a standard Craftbukkit server in my classes. Most of the time, I'm using a map I've made called the "Tutorial World". The map stands on its own somewhat... but to be truly useful in a classroom setting, it really needs a specific server setup that keeps students safe from harm and "on the path".

    Now, I would like to make these resources available to other teachers (and the Minecraft community at large). So I'm trying figure out a few things...

    I am planning on releasing the basic Tutorial World map on my webpage with instructions for its use. That's a no brainer. But I would also like to be able to distribute my entire server setup. I think this would be incredibly useful for other teachers that may want to try Minecraft in their classes but lack the technical skills (or the free time) to get a server running, hunt down plugins, keep everything updated, etc.

    But it occurred to me that there are probably licensing issues to consider. Both with Craftbukkit and with various plugins. So my question is... CAN I zip up my entire server setup and redistribute it on my own page? What are my options?

    And then to further complicate things... I was thinking of putting a link for PayPal donations on the download page. Everything would be free to download, but I would ask that if people intend to use the server/map professionally, that they consider making a donation. Is that a no-no?

    If we need to know about specific plugins and their licenses... here is a list of everything that I would like to distribute broken in to two categories. Plugins that are required for my server to function in a useful way for teachers... and ones that are desireable but not strictly necessary.

    • Craftbukkit (obviously)
    • Permissions
    • WorldGuard (which requires...)
    • WorldEdit

    • CommandBook
    • SpawnControl
    • Helios
    • WeatherMan
    • MyWarp

    I am grateful for any insight offered!

    a.k.a. The Minecraft Teacher
    anon and Phaedrus like this.
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    Why WeatherMan and Helios when CommandBook does it better and is also included?
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    It's definitely in a grey area. Perhaps you could just distribute your config files with links to downloading the individual jar files and instructions of putting it together. That way you aren't distributing any of the actualy code yourself.

    You could also contact the bukkit team and plugin developers directly and ask permission. Maybe you could even get a special build made for this limited purpose...

    I've read about your project, so I wish you luck on this. I come from a family of teachers so it's cool to see unique ways of teaching like this.
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    The primary issue with legality is that the license for Minecraft's server restricts redistribution. You -must- get your server .jar from minecraft.net or you're breaking copyright. Of course, what you can do instead is zip everything -but- the minecraft server jarfile, and toss in a readme.txt with simple instructions on how to make it a usable server.
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    Well, I like Helios because the sun still moves across the sky. And honestly, I only recently made the jump from Essentials to CommandBook... so I haven't even tried its own weather controls. But like I said, those are both in the optional catagory.

    How does this apply with Craftbukkit? I would not be distributing the official server. Or is this the case for Craftbukkit, too?

    EDIT by Moderator: merged posts, please use the edit button instead of double posting.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2016
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    CraftBukkit contains Minecraft code, so CraftBukkit itself is in legal grey area. From a legal point of view, then definitely some blind eyes have been turned.

    But for my plugins, you are free to distribute them! Their license (GPLv3) requires that you distribute the source code with the plugins though, which you can get by hitting "Downloads" and then "Download .zip" on here: https://github.com/sk89q/commandbook and https://github.com/sk89q/worldedit and https://github.com/sk89q/worldguard

    From a legal point of view, you can redistribute any open source plugin without having to ask for permission, but as courtesy, you could choose to ask.
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    Thanks for the reply, and thanks for that permission to distribute! You are totally my hero! Keep up the amazing work! :)
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    @sk89q Nice to know. I may run into this problem in the future too. we are planning to have some kind of premium service on our server we are trying to script every plugin ourself so we don't "steal" anything, however we keep worldedit cause we cant top something that is already to high.
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