I have a question about "commercial" and "non-commercial" usage, also with the usage of MongoDb.

Lets imagine we got a website without a business model, the site grows in popularity but still no incomming money. Are we talking about non-commercial at this point?

And once the website starts making money, is it allowed to decide at that point to get a commercial license?

Thanks for help.

2 Answers 2


MongoDB licensing seems rather straight forward. It's an AGPL 3.0 license with Apache licensed drivers, which means you can use it commercially for free, as long as you contribute any improvements you do to the actual database back to the project.

For more detailed info and motivation behind it, see the linked page.


Any software that has distinct license terms for Commercial vs. Non-commercial usage should define those terms in the license. If they do not define the terms you will need to ask them what they mean.

For your specific question about MongoDB the commercial Licensing option exists only if you do not want to or can't comply with the AGPL terms. My interpretation is that as long as you comply with the AGPL terms you can use MongoDB for any purpose, commercial or not and if you you do not want to comply with the AGPL you must get a commercial license even if your application is non-commercial.

As is the case with most licensing questions: Ask the owner of the the copyright these sorts of questions. They know better than random people on the internet.

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