Most of you know that we build Zen carts very regularly. Part of the draw and value of Zen Cart is its GPL license. This means a few very important things to us as a company who looks to support our customers in the best way possible. Not every company can afford a fully custom developed shopping cart software…. Just for them. The next best thing is a strong community based FREE software solution, like Zen Cart.

So Zen Cart is highly effective and very flexible. The fact that its licensing is GPL means we can mold it to better fit individual business owner’s needs, thus sparing them impossible development costs for the customizations and support they need. Zen Cart accomplishes this and more. One VERY important aspect of any GPL software is its community… This is the lifeline of the support you will need and the secure future of any free software project. No community…. No future.

Zen Cart has a very active and top notch community to rely on for support, advice and even free contributed GPL software modules to make the customizing of your Zen Cart easier.  So for us… We know Zen Cart is standing by their project and that this thriving community of supporters can be relied on.

This also means that the Zen Cart Team has only donations to rely on for development, hosting and other associated costs for the free services they provide…. So when you’re done reading, please buy them a cup of coffee.

So, now we have the value of GPL community supported software… What about the rules?

Simply put Zen Cart is released under the GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE, Version 2. In layman’s terms the following bullet list highlights the most important pieces of the license. Here are Zen Carts remix/contribution rules.

  1. Zen Cart is Open Source Software, this simply means that the code source is freely available
  2. GPL is synonymous with GNU, which gives the software licensing ability to be shared
  3. You can change the software without issue to suit your needs
  4. Remixes and code changes MUST be distributed with the same rights with which the software was given to you
  5. You cannot remove Zen Carts copyright statements within the coded documents
  6. ANY remix/module which changes Zen Cart’s core code is required by GPL to be released as GPL… You cannot make core changes to Zen Cart and then sell it
  7. No remix or contribution is permitted to be discussed/supported in the support forum unless it has been submitted to Zen Cart in the free contributions section

So the straight and narrow of this is…. IF you edit Zen Cart or add to it, the resulting code can only be released as GNU2.0/GPL (the same rights which were granted to you) and you may not sell remixes of Zen Cart.

You must cause any work that you distribute or publish, that in whole or in part contains or is derived from the Program or any part thereof, to be licensed as a whole at no charge to all third parties under the terms of this License.

So you can make Zen Cart do the things you need, share these discoveries and reap the full benefit of very strongly supported software. Cool huh?

Ok, so many times, my partner has been called on the carpet for SELLING Zen Cart modules. These under in