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Daniel_Daniel

Can you use Houdini Engine components in a non-open source project?

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Does the license allow you to embed parts of Houdini's products in your own commercial software? Have you heard about any project that uses them commercially already?

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Most Houdini Engine plugins are embedded in closed source applications. You definitely can do this, HE will use license anyway. If you want to sell it to third parties, it's probably good idea to talk to SideFX though.

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As a matter of fact, from what I've heard, its actually "legally" tricky to embedd it into open source software..
I believe it would be against Blender's licence agreement if I remember correctly..

but yeah SideEffects made a Houdini engine SDK and documentation for a reason :)
so as long as you are not subverting the licensing system of the plugin, I think you should be fine
(This would mean your users would need to get your software as well as a Houdini Engine Licence)

and yeah talking about it with SideFX would not be a bad idea either. I think they're always interested in hearing about stuff like this

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On 4/28/2021 at 3:50 AM, acey195 said:

As a matter of fact, from what I've heard, its actually "legally" tricky to embedd it into open source software..
I believe it would be against Blender's licence agreement if I remember correctly..

Yes, this is interesting. HAPI source is not GPL, but, say, I would write HE for Blender, then all I have to do is open source (GPL) my code, and then HAPI (nor Houdini) doesn't have to, since neither I have control over HAPI, nor Houdini is linked with Blender. Now this changes for SideFX, since they do control HAPI and GPL magically applies to them (to HAPI), or doesn't it? 

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Maaaybe, I'm not an expert on this topic.. its just what I've heard from colleagues and friends.

Perhaps using an intermediary thing, like a webclient would be a work-around for blender.
You sacrifice some of the direct access, but you could still make some basic UI to send data (meshes) back and forth
https://www.sidefx.com/docs/houdini/hom/hou/webServer/index.html

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Posted (edited)

on the topic of REST webclients for Houdini here was an interesting project using python2's BaseHTTPServer and three-js (2016):

In terms of licensing, I spoke with SideFX Support a couple of months ago and they agreed on the usage of HE as a web server, as long as it isn't meant as a mere bypass into Houdini itself (but don't take my word for it, for any new project please contact them directly).

Edited by Daniel_Daniel
removed flask - mistake
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19 hours ago, acey195 said:

Maaaybe, I'm not an expert on this topic.. its just what I've heard from colleagues and friends.

no problem, that was rhetoric question :)

Quote

Perhaps using an intermediary thing, like a webclient would be a work-around for blender.

That's the thing, internally you don't have to worry about anything, you can even link Blender with HDK, although HAPI allows you to avoid even that (by linking with HAPI instead of HDK).

If you start selling things to third parties, then you have to be worried both about SideFX license and GPL. As Daniel_Daniel said, SideFX in its HEngine license might put some safety measures in case someone will do wrong thing with it (like making new Houdini) or renting your HEngine license in internet what HAPI effectively allows you to do.

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