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Nessus Closes Its Source October 7, 2005

Posted by theexpert in Technology.
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News.com reports that the source code for the next version of Nessus will not be made available, though the application will still be available free of charge. According to the article, the primary author, Renaud Deraison, believes that making the source code available aids companies competing with Tenable Network Security, which provides corporate sponsorship and security solutions centered around Nessus.

In an email to the Nessus mailing list, Renaud said that with a couple of exceptions, “nobody has ever contributed anything to improve the scanning _engine_ over the last 6 years.” I found this to be much more interesting than the ensuing licensing discussion. I admit that I don’t scour the mailing lists of open-source projects for signs of a big community that doesn’t give back to the project, so maybe this is more common than I think, but I would have definitely bet money that more than two other people had contributed back to the engine of a product that has been around for years and is used by tens of thousands of organizations. I don’t know if this says anything about the Nessus code or the community, but it definitely surprises me.

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