Integrating CB query-builder with own application


I am in the process of developing a web-design platform that will offer CB as a back-end database. I would like to offer an in-browser development tool for the database queries, but given the breadth of options available, I would prefer not to develop such a tool from scratch.

Would it be permissible by CB to integrate parts of the tools you have developed into our own platform? The only part that would be integrated would be the query-builder.

If you would like to view the end product before launching, this is fine.

We would give credit on our site to say thank you, of course.


Please check with @eben. Note that open source parts of Couchbase can be incorporated using the terms of the open source license.

Hi @Eugaia,

I’m the developer of the web-based query workbench. FYI, I’ve been working lately on making the Query Workbench modular and parametrizable, since a version of it will be used for the developer preview of CBAS. In the latest code, you’ll find there is a .js file with various constants to turn on/off various functions in the UI. That work will continue, so keep an eye on developments in the code, as it should get easier to integrate the workbench into other things. Also, feel free to ask me any questions you have about that code.



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@geraldss Thanks for pinging @eben

Hi @eben Thanks for responding. To be clear, I will be developing a proprietary platform that I do not want to make open-source (on a GPL / BSD type basis). Obviously any JS would have the source-code viewable, but I’m talking about licensing terms for the whole application.

If I made any changes specifically to the Couchbase workbench side of things, I’m happy to send them to you (should they be of potential use to you guys), and I’m certainly happy to send in bug reports / fixes etc (I like to give back too) - and to make such changes available using whatever licensing you use.

I would like to confirm, though, that if I were to include one (or several) of your workbench JS scripts that I would not be forced to make my entire application conform to that license - only the relevant parts, pertaining to our integration with Couchbase.

I got the impression from your message that this would be OK, but it was not explicitly stated, and I want to be 100% sure that you guys are OK with me integrating your code with mine (without affecting the overall licensing of my product) before beginning.

Note: some time early-to-mid next year, once our platform / site is developed and launched, I am fully intending on approaching Couchbase to look at partnership opportunities / a strong business relationship, as Couchbase will be a key part of our platform (and the primary database used). If the usage of the relevant workbench code without licensing restrictions on the rest of my code would be dependent on that, I’m happy to discuss privately what I’m doing (on superficial levels at this stage, for obvious reasons).

I’m hoping that that won’t be a necessity, but for my own peace of mind, if you could clarify your position, I would be most grateful.


Those are legal questions that will not be answered by engineers. You should read the license or get someone to read / interpret it for you.

Couchbase is open source, and the source code includes licenses that govern what you are asking about.


Yes, I agree that an engineer is not the most appropriate person to ask about the specific legal issues, though he may know Couchbase’s legal position on such matters regarding the specific code he’s working on - which has a specific license attributed to it.

I believe the relevant part of the workbench (DP3) licensing is this:

  1. License Grant. Couchbase Inc. hereby grants Licensee, free of charge,
    the non-exclusive right to use, copy, merge, publish, distribute,
    sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to
    whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to Licensee including
    the following copyright notice in all copies or substantial portions of
    the Software:

I’ve now read this several times, and my interpretation is that if I were to merge any of your code with mine, that it would be only your code that would be subject to the ‘non-exclusive right to use, copy…’ and not mine.

It seems to me exactly the right license for you guys to make, to allow others to integrate this particular code into theirs without licensing issues for others’ code.

However, I would like to be sure of my interpretation, as per your company. Is there someone within your organization that could give me definitive confirmation that my interpretation of your legal position is correct, so as to avoid any potential issues later on? I only wish to avoid legal clashes before they happen.

Thank you for your help.

Let me check and confirm.

@geraldss Many thanks - much appreciated.

@geraldss Do you have any update on this?


Ok, here is your answer from our legal folks, quoting:

"I just read the thread. If he is asking about the source code version we put on GitHub, my understanding is that we license that under the Apache 2.0 license. But that guy is quoting a different license (He quotes: “License Grant. Couchbase Inc. hereby grants Licensee, free of charge,
the non-exclusive right to use, copy, merge, publish, distribute…,”).

Can you please double-check that he is referring to our source code version? If so, I can just point him to Apache 2.0, and it’s broad rights to use the code in almost any fashion."