MariaDB takes its MaxScale DB proxy closed source (BSL)

MariaDB Corp. has announced that release 2.0 of its MaxScale database proxy software is henceforth no longer open source. The organization has made it source-available under a proprietary license that promises each release will eventually become open source once it’s out of date.


a) it’s only the proxy, they can’t change the licensing on MariaDB itself (ironically because Oracle);
b) it’s effectively free to run on 3 or fewer machines
c) the source code will continue to be available, thus allowing anyone to fork 1.x and replicate any 2.x functionality.

The real issue here is that they’ve made the classic mistake of trying to close after opening. This can only happen after your first business strategy failed (ie sell support/commercial licenses etc), but one spinoff component (in this case the proxy) turned out to be something people might be forced to pay for upgrades to.

Here’s the original article and interview at the time of the “MariaDB Foundation”.