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Delphi & C++Builder Community Edition FAQs

Full-Featured Free Delphi IDE for Creating Native Cross-Platform Apps

The Community Editions (CE) of Delphi and C++Builder are designed to allow individuals and startups to bootstrap their vision with free access to advanced app development tools.

The Community Editions are the freely downloadable editions of the respective Embarcadero IDEs with license restrictions and a revenue limit on use. Each is a full-featured earlier edition of the currently available latest edition. For example, if the currently available latest edition is 12 Athens, the currently available Community Edition is 11 Alexandria.

No. Only Delphi CE and C++Builder CE are available. If you're interested in all the features RAD Studio has to offer, including using both Delphi and C++ together in the one IDE and app, you can request a 30 Day Free Trial of RAD Studio Architect.

The Community Edition is a great way to get started building high-performance applications. CE includes a fully featured IDE, code editor, ultra-fast compiler, integrated debugger, two-way visual designers to speed development, and hundreds of visual components.

If you're an individual you may use CE to create apps for your own use and apps that you can sell. However, CE is subject to a revenue limit and restrictions in the License Agreement. You can use it until you're at a revenue point, beyond which it's reasonable to expect you to buy a normal license. Ie, put even more simply, if you make money, buy a commercial license; if not, use the free license.

No. Delphi CE and C++Builder CE cannot co-exist with another product edition of the same version on the same machine.

Yes. Delphi and C++Builder are also available in Professional, Enterprise, and Architect editions. Learn more about the differences between the editions at Delphi Product Editions and C++Builder Product Editions.

The Community Edition aims to strike a reasonable balance between making a professional-level tool available for free, and requiring you buy it when reasonable.

Your use of CE is subject to certain restrictions stated in the License Agreement. We have summarized the restrictions applicable to CE throughout this FAQs.

For example, CE is both designed to allow individuals and startups to bootstrap their vision until annual revenues reach $5,000 at which point you are required to stop using the Community Edition and purchase a paid license to continue using either the Delphi or C++Builder.

If you're an individual developer you can use CE to create apps for your own use and apps that you can sell until your revenues reach $5,000 per year. For more information please read the License Agreement.

Use of CE in this context is subject to the restrictions summarized below and stated in the License Agreement. If you're an employee of a small company, governmental entity or non-profit organization with revenue or donations up to US$5,000 per year, you can use CE. Once the company's total revenue or donations reach US$5,000 per year or your team expands to more than 5 developers, you must buy an unrestricted paid commercial license.

Yes, subject to the following restrictions. You must download and use CE software on your own computer and not on company issued hardware. In addition, the revenue of all contract work performed by you in one calendar year may not exceed $5,000.00 (or the equivalent in other currencies) (the "Threshold") whether or not CE is used for all projects. For example, a developer who receives payment of $5,000.00 for a single project (or more than $5,000 for multiple projects) even if such engagements do not anticipate the use of CEn, is not allowed to use CE. Also, a developer building solely an app store application would not be allowed to use CE once the app store revenue reaches a revenue of $5,000 or more in a year.

No. Embarcadero offers several academic programs to accredited educational institutions that want to incorporate teaching with RAD Studio into their curriculum and/or make them available to students to use in their coursework. Qualifying educational institutions are eligible to receive discounted, and in some cases free, academic licenses. Contact our Sales team or your local Embarcadero representative to find out which program is best suited for your institution.

CE is a great choice for individual students to install on their personal machine for learning programming languages.

No. Embarcadero makes available a trial version of RAD Studio Architect editions, which allow users to try out all the highest level features of Delphi and C++Builder. You can see the differences in features by edition on the Product Editions web page and in the feature matrix. The Community Edition CANNOT be used as a trial version.

Yes, you can use CE to contribute to open-source projects as long as the rules on the revenue limit are respected.

Yes, as long as you don't install CE on an employer-issued device and/or within the company premises or network, and the use of CE doesn't benefit the company (i.e. your employer). Use of CE must be for personal purposes. If your use of CE benefits or is connected (directly or indirectly) to your employer, Embarcadero at its sole discretion will assume your use of CE is for the benefit of your employer, which is outside the scope of the License Agreement because your employer generates more than US$5,000 in revenue.

Yes. You can use CE to build apps that will be used by a non-profit organization provided your own cumulative annual revenue and/or the overall revenue (including any donations) of the non-profit organization that will be using the app is less than US$5,000 or the local currency equivalent. See License Agreement for details.

Yes. When you need to upgrade your edition (if you're no longer eligible for CE or require additional capabilities of higher editions), purchase the edition you need. You'll need to reinstall the commercial edition of Delphi or C++Builder, but you'll be able to save and maintain and use the code of projects created in CE in your new commercial edition.

Yes. You may sell any apps or components developed with CE under the CE license until your annual revenue exceeds US$5,000 or local currency equivalent, at which point you need to buy a commercial-use license. Please see the license terms here.

Yes, subject the company total revenue doesn't exceed US$5,000 dollars or local currency equivalent. Putting another way. A Professional, Enterprise or Architect edition license is required for developing or deploying any apps or components within any company with total company revenues exceeding US$5,000 or local currency equivalent.

No. Apps and components built with CE may be distributed royalty-free. However, if you are selling your licenses and services built with CE, we require that you purchase a full commercial license when your revenue based on those licenses or services exceeds US$5,000 or local currency equivalent, or if your annual company revenue exceeds US$5,000 or equivalent. See License Agreement for details.

Yes. The Community Editions are meant for hobbyists, individual developers, and small teams doing limited commercial development, including pre-revenue startups. Companies or organizations with teams of more than five developers doing development are required to purchase a Professional, Enterprise or Architect edition license for each developer rather than using CE.

The term of the Community Edition license is for one year from your first download or unsealing of Licensor's Products ("Community Edition Term") and will automatically expire upon the end of the Community Edition Term - the Community Edition license will not auto-renew. To the extent you want to continue using the Community Edition after the expiration or termination of your Community Edition Term, you must re-install the latest version of the Community Edition and agree with the terms and conditions of the Agreement in force at that time. For example, if Licensee installed the Community Edition v1.0 and upon expiration of the Community Edition Term intends to continue using the Community Edition then, subject to Licensee's continued compliance with the additional license terms and restrictions of the Community Edition, Licensee must re-install the then current version of the Community Edition license. Upon expiration of the Community Edition Term, all software developed using the Community Edition license may continue to be distributed by Licensee subject to the terms and restrictions of the License Agreement. All restrictions and conditions relating to the Community Edition license shall survive the termination or expiration of your Community Edition Term. The Community Edition license will automatically terminate upon Licensee's breach of the terms specified in the License Agreement.

No. Only single user licenses are available. Network named and concurrent licenses are available for Professional editions and above.

Users will be able to request a new 1 year key through the website. That key will be applicable to the current CE that's available for download at that time.

No, access to earlier versions is only included with the Professional, Enterprise, and Architect editions, not with CE. The CE license is always valid for the most recent version.

Here are the key reasons for choosing Professional instead of the Community Edition:

  • Perpetual license (Community License is a one year term)
  • No annual revenue restriction
  • Update Subscription - fixes, new releases, beta access and more
  • Technical Support
  • Ability to move the command line compiler to another machine or build server

Remember per the License Agreement, you are required to purchase a Professional or higher edition when your annual revenues reach US$5000 or local currency equivalent, or when your development team grows to 5 or more developers.

CE installation is only supported through the web based GetIt installer, not the offline InstallAware installer. For paid editions, we provide two installation options, a web based installer, and an offline ISO installer.

Yes, database application development is a feature of Delphi CE and C++Builder CE. The Community Edition includes local and embedded database connectivity. Purchase Enterprise or Architect editions to build applications with remote (client/server, multi-tier) access to a wide range of databases including Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle, Sybase, SQL Anywhere, InterBase, DB2, Informix, MongoDB, MySQL and ODBC data sources.s