Getting Started

What is LFX EasyCLA?

LFX EasyCLA helps streamline the contribution process for open source projects that use Contributor License Agreements (CLAs), by streamlining workflows for project maintainers, contributors, and organizations whose employees are contributing to the project. EasyCLA coordinates the process of getting CLAs signed and, for companies and other organizations, the process of authorizing employees to contribute under a signed CLA. By automating many of the manual processes, this open source solution hosted by The Linux Foundation reduces delays for developers to get authorized under a CLA.

What is a CLA?

Some projects use a Contributor License Agreement (CLA) to define the terms under which content (such as source code or documentation) is contributed to the project.

Not all projects use CLAs; many use alternative contribution mechanisms, such as the Developer Certificate of Origin sign-off process. For those that do use CLAs, LFX EasyCLA helps to ensure that contributions are not merged into a project unless the contributors are covered under a signed CLA.

There are two types of CLAs:

  • Corporate Contributor License Agreement

    If the company (employer) owns the contribution, a CCLA signatory signs a Corporate CLA. The Corporate CLA legally binds the corporation, so the agreement must be signed by a person with authority to enter into legal contracts on behalf of the corporation. A project may require that every employee (developer) should sign their own individual CLA (which separately covers contributions owned by the individual contributor) besides being covered by corporate CLA.

  • Individual Contributor License Agreement

    If as an individual you own the contribution, you sign the Individual CLA. A signed Individual CLA may be required before an individual's contribution can be merged into the project repository.

How Does it Work?

The following high-level diagram shows the different flows and roles that EasyCLA supports.

LFX EasyCLA Flow Diagram

What Role are You?

How you interact with EasyCLA depends on your role. EasyCLA supports the following roles in its workflow:

Project Manager

You are a project manager if you are the project maintainer who has responsibilities such as managing a project’s GitHub organization or Gerrit instance, members, repositories, and CLAs. You have access to specific projects within the EasyCLA project console, also referred as Project Control Center.

With EasyCLA, you do the following CLA set-up tasks:

  1. Add GitHub repositories or Gerrit instances to enforce CLA monitoring.

At any time, you can change the settings to manage your project CLA monitoring, and do other management tasks:

Contributor

You are a contributor (developer) if you contribute code to GitHub or Gerrit projects. With EasyCLA, you will follow different workflows depending on whether the project is hosted on GitHub or Gerrit, and whether you contribute on behalf of a company or yourself as an individual:

Corporate CLA Manager

You are a Corporate CLA manager (CCLA manager) if you are the person authorized to manage the list of approved contributors under your company’s Corporate CLA. There can be one or more CLA managers for a company. With this responsibility, you use EasyCLA to:

Corporate CLA Signatory

You are a Corporate CLA signatory (CCLA signatory) if you are authorized to sign contracts, such as the project’s CLA, on behalf of the company. With EasyCLA, you can: