GitHub, the source code repository software company with a website where people host and collaborate on open-source software projects, today announced a small but meaningful update to repository pages online — now they prominently display which open-source licenses are used. When you click on the name of the license, you’ll be brought to the license for the repository.

The change will be coming to GitHub Enterprise, just like the updated profiles, GitHub Projects tool, and pull request reviews that GitHub brought to last week, GitHub product manager Ayman Nadeem wrote in a blog post.

Of course, until now, you could have just accessed the license for a given repository on your own by scrolling down until you saw its license file, which is typically labeled “LICENSE.” The change means that you get to that page a little faster. People cruising the site can spend just a little less time figuring out if the code is a good fit for them to work with.

“We don’t detect every open source license, nor complicated situations such as projects with multiple licenses. For those situations you can still find and read the project’s license(s) as before,” Nadeem wrote.

Last week GitHub said it had more than 16 million developers and more than 19.4 million public repositories that had been active in the past year. The most popular open-source licenses on the site are the MIT license, the Apache 2.0 license, and the GNU General Public License v3.0 (GPLv3).


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