An anonymous reader writes "In an effort to help device makers differentiate their products and compete more vigorously with Linux,
Microsoft is eliminating
major restrictions on the use of its "shared source" license for the
Windows CE operating system. The change, which accompanies the impending
full release of Windows CE 5.0, will counter competition from Linux
and is likely to expand Microsoft's slice of the roughly $1B embedded OS
market pie. Specifically, the new version of the Win CE Shared Source
license will, for the first time, enable developers anywhere in the
world to include modified Windows CE code within commercial products
without having to sublicense the modifications back to Microsoft.
Interestingly, the revised Shared Source terms are reminiscent of the BSD open source license, which permits the development of proprietary derivatives that need not be shared with the community, in contrast to the GPL, which obligates developers to make their modifications available to the public."