Licensing of "Getting Started"

I am building a simple test set using Arduino to test a very simple home made circuit board “X” that I previously built for my employer, a major aerospace company.

Many of my original questions were answered when I read
post num=1187284419
but I’m not home yet.
(sorry yaBB wont allow the full URL since this is my first post)

X is custom designed to fix a particular problem on a particular aircraft, which is not to be discussed outside of proper channels. My company and the USAF like the simple fix, and we will direct a supplier to add this into their design. There are too many units to practically test by hand, so we need a simple test set, which is where Arduino Uno and a Maker Shield comes in. Its Mity Fine !

In drafting up a user manual for my test set I scooped up the Arduino “getting started” guide off the web site. To make it even more idiot proof I deleted all references to versions other than Uno, and minor changes specific to my project. At the bottom of THAT SECTION I have placed the following:

““The Quick Start Guide above is based on the text of the Arduino getting started guide for Windows, which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. Code samples from the Arduino guide are released into the public domain. The XXXX Test Set software, hardware and the remainder of this document are proprietary to XXX Aeronautics.””

Which applies CC (hopefully clearly so) to ONLY the “getting started” section adapted from the web site.

My two remaining Questions

(1) does the statement above meet CC license requirements?

(2) whom do I ask for a waiver for release of “Share Alike”

For #2 nothing of value to the community is added, its actually less useful by reducing it down to only the configuration my supplier will use. It is short and clear.

I’m excited about my first Arduino, and the opportunity to use it in an important and critical project. Attribution is no problem whatsoever, the document praises Open Source, the Arduino, and names the Arduino team members. However my company will be afraid to release any proprietary document that contains any “share alike” license language, so #2 would make life much easier, and does not deprive the community of any value.

Can't you just split it into two documents? One based on Getting Started and the other with the proprietary stuff?

Yeah making a separate document is a good Plan B, in case I cant get a Waiver of the Share-Alike clause. That would have to be an email from one of the Five Gods, no? I could email them my stripped-down version of Getting Started, but not much else from the user test set manual. Should I wait for one of the Five Gods to reply to this thread? * Share Alike — If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under the same or similar license to this one. With the understanding that: * Waiver — Any of the above conditions can be waived if you get permission from the copyright holder.

Ya know, another idea just struck me. If I were to post the stripped down version here, under the unmodified Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 maybe that would satisfy the Share-Alike clause, and I could be excused from including Share-Alike language in the proprietary document. Kinda like splitting off a separate thread of development.

The manual already has plenty of links to but that only helps Attribution, and I worry about link rot. In the aerospace world equipment and procedures often outlive their creators, and I worry that years after the production and installation of my little modification is complete some poor engineer yet unborn is gonna have to reactivate this test set using a computer we can hardly imagine. Will probably take him a week to find a hyperspace-to-usb adapter.

Sorry to keep pickin on this, I'm just a simple engineer who has seen our contracts and legal folks spin straight up the Z-axis over such details.

Am really impressed by Arduino. Prior I messed with BasicStamp and SitePlayer and before that did some projects with MCS-51, an Intel microcontroller with 8k BASIC in ROM. That was nice, they documented the floating point stack and all the opcodes for math and io so they were still available when I dropped down to assy language for speed. Having so much power and more in an open source Arduino is a dream come true for an old buzzard like me.

Arduino is a fully open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. The Arduino team is: Massimo Banzi, David Cuartielles, Tom Igoe, Gianluca Martino, and David Mellis. As of Dec 2010 there were over 35,000 registered members in the Arduino open source community.

The open-source Arduino environment makes it easy to write code and upload it to an Arduino board. It runs on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. The environment is written in Java and based on Processing, avr-gcc, and other open source software.

The primary interface between the XXXX Test Set and the host PC is USB.

Quick Start Guide

  • 1 | Get an XXXX Test Set, USB A to B cable, and DC power adaptor
  • 2 | Download and unzip the Arduino environment
  • 3 | Connect the Test Set
  • 4 | Install the drivers
  • 5 | Launch the Arduino application
  • 6 | Open the 'blink' example program
  • 7 | Set board type to Arduino Uno
  • 8 | Select your USB serial port (from driver installation)
  • 9 | Upload the 'blink' example program

1 | Get an XXXX Test Set, USB cable and DC power supply

In this tutorial, we assume you're using XXXX Test Set based on Arduino Uno. If you host this application another Arduino board, read the corresponding page at

You also need a standard USB cable (A plug to B plug): the kind you would connect to a USB printer, for example.

The Arduino Uno will accept power from the USB port of the host, but for XXXX testing it is highly recommended that you use an external DC power adapter supplying between 8v and 12v DC.

2 | Download the Arduino environment

Get the latest version from the download page at Unzip the file, making sure to preserve the folder structure. Open it. There should be a few files and sub-folders inside.

3 | Connect the Test Set

The Arduino Uno automatically draws power from either the USB connection to the computer or an external power supply, but since XXXX to Test Set interface is ratiometric to Vcc, it is highly recommended that you use an external DC power adapter supplying between 7v and 12v DC. This ensures the onboard voltage regulator has enough headroom to provide a well regulated supply, providing adequate DC accuracy for the measurements.

The green power LED (labelled PWR) should go on. Connect the Arduino board to your computer using the USB cable.

4 | Install the drivers

Installing drivers for the Arduino Uno with Windows7, Vista, or XP:

  • Wait for Windows to attempt and then fail it's driver installation process.
  • Open up the Control Panel, navigate to the Device Manager.
  • Look under Ports (COM & LPT) to find an open port named "Arduino UNO (COMxx)"
  • Right click on the "Arduino UNO (COmxx)" port and choose the "Update Driver Software" option.
  • Next, choose the "Browse my computer for Driver software" option.
  • Finally, navigate to and select the Uno's driver file, named "ArduinoUNO.inf", located in the "Drivers" folder of the Arduino Software download (not the "FTDI USB Drivers" sub-directory).
  • Windows will finish up the driver installation from there.

You can check that the drivers have been installed by opening the Windows Device Mananger (in the Hardware tab of System control panel). Look for a "USB Serial Port" in the Ports section; that's the Arduino board.

5 | Launch the Arduino application

Double-click the Arduino application.

6 | Open the blink example

Open the LED blink example sketch: File > Examples > 1.Basics > Blink.

7 | Select your board

In the Tools > Board menu, select Arduino Uno.

8 | Select your serial port

Select the serial device of the Arduino board from the Tools | Serial Port menu. This is likely to be COM3 or higher (COM1 and COM2 are usually reserved for hardware serial ports). To find out, you can disconnect your Arduino board and re-open the menu; the entry that disappears should be the Arduino board. Reconnect the board and select that serial port.

9 | Upload the program

Click the "Upload" button in the environment. Wait a few seconds - you should see the RX and TX leds on the board flashing. If the upload is successful, the message "Done uploading." will appear in the status bar.

A few seconds after the upload finishes, you should see the pin 13 (L) LED on the board start to blink (in orange). If it does, congratulations! You've gotten Arduino up-and-running.

If you have problems, please see the troubleshooting suggestions for Arduino Uno at

That would have to be an email from one of the Five Gods, no?

I have no idea. The only copyright notice I can find is on the website index. I assume one of them wrote the Getting Started pages.

Should I wait for one of the Five Gods to reply to this thread?

I suspect that you will have to contact them directly. Even then, I doubt you will get a concrete answer one way or the other. Your concern, unfortunately, really falls under the domain of lawyers.

The text of the Arduino getting started guide is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. I hereby release my adaptation, as in the previous post above , under the same terms.

I request from the license holders permission to waive the inclusion of the "ShareAlike" license terms in the text of a user manual for a test set based on the Arduino Uno.

The test set is a one-off design to be used in-house by an avionics supplier. The entire manual will be proprietary and protected under Safety Privilege, only the section adapted from your website is hereby released back into the commons via this forum.

BTW you guys while redacting my employer's name and the avionics system name, I noticed the original guide has two items numbered "8". You might wanna fix that in your copious free time ;-)