selection of code base and license

 
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ape



Joined: 01 Nov 2006
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 4:01 pm    Post subject: selection of code base and license Reply with quote

I work for an ISP, and I've got permission to install and operate a mud using (a very small amount) of company paid time.

I've got a background in java and perl programming, but I need something that can be operated with a small number of hours invested in week to week administration.

I've also played a lot of muds. 15 years ago I failed out of school playing shine/nether/etc (diku and merc 2.x based muds). I eventually got back in and graduated, but not before learning a fair bit about how to mud. Smile

Even more important is that I avoid violating the license of the software I install. I've read this thread on the selection of code bases:
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=159

The recommendation seems to favor quickmud (derived from mercmud, in turn derived from dikumud), and possibly circlemud.

My problem is that circlemud / quickmud / ROM /merc are all derived from dikumud, and the license for that explicitly forbids the use of the code for profit in any way, shape, or form. The intent is to NOT charge for access to the mud, and so it would be possible for people to play the mud without any sort of compensation to my employer. However it would also be easily argued that offering a free mud is certainly advertisement for us, and would ultimately result in some sort of profitting. If my employer didn't feel that this was likely, I probably wouldn't have this opportunity in the first place.

Now I know that actual enforcement of these licenses is highly unlikely. However the fact that I am unlikely to be punished for stealing doesn't make it okay for me to steal.

So what I am looking for is a mud source that is reasonably complete and playable, has a license that I can comply with given the intended environment, and won't tie up too much time with maintenance.

I've looked at CoffeeMud, as it is written in Java, seems fairly mature, and has an apache derived license. However since I've played lots and administrated little, I had hoped to have some input from those more experienced.

Any thoughts? Thanks in advance!
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JWideman



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 6:34 pm    Post subject: Re: selection of code base and license Reply with quote

ape wrote:
I work for an ISP, and I've got permission to install and operate a mud using (a very small amount) of company paid time.

I've got a background in java and perl programming, but I need something that can be operated with a small number of hours invested in week to week administration.

I've also played a lot of muds. 15 years ago I failed out of school playing shine/nether/etc (diku and merc 2.x based muds). I eventually got back in and graduated, but not before learning a fair bit about how to mud. Smile

Even more important is that I avoid violating the license of the software I install. I've read this thread on the selection of code bases:
http://www.mudlab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=159

The recommendation seems to favor quickmud (derived from mercmud, in turn derived from dikumud), and possibly circlemud.

My problem is that circlemud / quickmud / ROM /merc are all derived from dikumud, and the license for that explicitly forbids the use of the code for profit in any way, shape, or form. The intent is to NOT charge for access to the mud, and so it would be possible for people to play the mud without any sort of compensation to my employer. However it would also be easily argued that offering a free mud is certainly advertisement for us, and would ultimately result in some sort of profitting. If my employer didn't feel that this was likely, I probably wouldn't have this opportunity in the first place.

Now I know that actual enforcement of these licenses is highly unlikely. However the fact that I am unlikely to be punished for stealing doesn't make it okay for me to steal.

So what I am looking for is a mud source that is reasonably complete and playable, has a license that I can comply with given the intended environment, and won't tie up too much time with maintenance.

I've looked at CoffeeMud, as it is written in Java, seems fairly mature, and has an apache derived license. However since I've played lots and administrated little, I had hoped to have some input from those more experienced.

Any thoughts? Thanks in advance!


One major advantage of CoffeeMud is that it is in constant developement, and the coder is usually on top of any problems that pop up. I highly recommend installing subversion to keep up to date.
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Silverthorn



Joined: 01 Jun 2005
Posts: 12
Location: Waycross, Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 7:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From a hosting perspective, just note that CoffeeMUD eats up alot of CPU and memory time if its not setup correctly for the Min and Max memory settings.

-- M
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ape



Joined: 01 Nov 2006
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 7:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the input. I've got lots of bandwidth, but only a single 1ghz chip on the machine that needs to be shared with other services, so I'll be sure to look closely to the min/max memory settings if I end up going with that code base.
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#endgame



Joined: 29 Oct 2006
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know about CoffeeMUD, but I'm seriously considering the NakedMud engine for my next project. It's written mostly in C, but supports Python both for scripting and for extending the MUD. As the name suggests, it has no real system to speak of, but provides a fairly easily extensible framework. It's also public domain code. It might be a little harder to get to know with your Java/Perl background though. (I'm a C/Python fan, myself.)

http://www.ualberta.ca/~hollis/nakedmud.html
A semi-active developer community is here:
http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/nakedmud/
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JWideman



Joined: 22 Oct 2006
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ape wrote:
Thanks for the input. I've got lots of bandwidth, but only a single 1ghz chip on the machine that needs to be shared with other services, so I'll be sure to look closely to the min/max memory settings if I end up going with that code base.


It shouldn't use much cpu time, but it can be demanding on ram. An average mud can expect to use 128-256MB, according to the developer. Of course, that's on windows - linux tends to be much more efficient.
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ape



Joined: 01 Nov 2006
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Thu Nov 02, 2006 4:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

512 memory, 1 ghz chip, gentoo linux, and potentially dozens of T1s worth of bandwidth to play with. How's that for a dichotomy?
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Silverthorn



Joined: 01 Jun 2005
Posts: 12
Location: Waycross, Georgia, USA

PostPosted: Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you going to be running other services/applications on the Linux box in addition to the MUD? If you include XWindows (i.e. KDE, Gnome), that is going to cut down your chances of running a Java-based game engine dramatically and effectively.

If you decide to use CoffeeMUD, make sure you add this into the startup script: -Xms:128m -Xmx:128m (it hard sets the ram usage at 128MB) or you can watch your system get bogged down in a heartbeat.

-- M
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ape



Joined: 01 Nov 2006
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Thu Nov 02, 2006 9:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, other services, including an apache web server, but no desktop. This is on a rack mount server in a remote location.

Thanks for the line for the script.
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cratylus



Joined: 06 Nov 2006
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2006 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm a bit biased, but I'd suggest you also take a peek
at LP muds. LP muds are composed of scripts interpreted by
a compiled binary called a "driver".

The drivers for most LP muds have a non-commercial
license, so this might be a deal-breaker for you. However,
historically this license has been interpreted to mean
"don't make players pay for mudding". Traditionally, it
has been acceptable, for example, for LP muds to accept
donations from players so long as there's no quid-pro-quo.

I guess the line would get fuzzy if access to the mud
depended on people signing up for your paid service.

But if you don't plan on charging players money for the game,
and access to the mud isn't dependent on being a customer, my
non-lawyer opinion is that an LP mud's driver licensing
is suitable for your purpose.

A list of some fairly easy to install LP libs is here:

http://lpmuds.net/lpmud_list.html

-Crat
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ape



Joined: 01 Nov 2006
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2006 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's interesting, thanks. I'll look into those and see if there's something there that I can pitch a sale for.
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