Grakn AGPL license limitations for commercial use


Hi all,
I am learning grakn as ontology database for some commercial project for investigation purpose.
I would like to know the limitation about AGPL license of grakn for commercial project.

Thanks a lot,


You can use AGPL software such as Grakn Core for anything for free - forever - so that includes commercial projects as well.

Under AGPL, if you modify the Grakn Core database, you will need to release the changes back to the community.

This means that your commercial project will be considered as a “separate programme”. This is why Grakn’s drivers are licensed under Apache meaning you can embed them into your commercial application without having to open source any code.

See here for more information:

Just as a side note, please note that the Grakn software that is AGPL licensed (Grakn Core) does not include the management system (Grakn KGMS):


Thanks a lot for the quick response,
it seems MongoDB license model, isn’t it?

About high availability and full text search, are these capabilities included in grakn core? Or in grakn KGMS?


That’s correct Matteo. Mongo also uses the AGPL to license their community edition.

No, Grakn Core does not include high availability and full text search. This is only provided in Grakn KGMS.


as the grakn db is based on cassandra, is it possible to fork grakn core and use secondary index with lucene?
However, how much does Workbench costs?



Hi Matteo,

Yes you can, but because of the AGPL you would have to open source any modifications you make. This is just so that any enhancements to grakn are released back to the open source community.

And please note that Workbase is included within Grakn KGMS. Happy to chat privately if you have more questions.