"It has come to our attention that portions of the Geronimo program appear to be virtually identical or substantially similar to JBoss program source code," wrote David Byer, a lawyer with the firm Testa Hurwitz & Thibeault. The letter offered several examples.
"In addition to examples of what appears to be direct copying of JBoss source code in the Geronimo code base, JBoss also has observed a significant number of architectural similarities, similar naming conventions, and other indications that portions of Geronimo may constitute derivative works of JBoss source code," the letter said. Byer called on the Apache Software Foundation to bring the Geronimo software in compliance with JBoss' software license and to take action to prevent "improper copying from occurring in the future."
Part of the conflict stems from the different licenses that the JBoss Group and the Apache Software Foundation use. The Apache license allows derivative works to be kept as proprietary software or released back to the community. JBoss uses the Lesser General Public License (LGPL), which requires any changes that are distributed to be made public.
It is very clear to me that the source code that the JBoss group claims as its own, is actually based on source code developed within the log4j project. Thus, in my opinion, the ASF has intellectual property rights on the source code mentioned in Exhibits A and B of the said letter.