Black Duck buys Koders for code search

Black Duck Software expands its reach into the open-source developer community

Black Duck Software plans to announce Monday that it has purchased the assets of Koders, maker of a code search engine and other tools, for an undisclosed sum.

Black Duck sells products and services based around the use of open-source and third-party code in software development projects.

"We believe that by doing this acquisition, we expand our reach into the developer community," said Black Duck CEO Douglas Levin.

Koders competes with Krugle, which recently launched the 2.0 version of its code search appliance. While Black Duck considered purchasing other companies, Levin declined to provide any details of those discussions or name the vendors.

"We've been in the market and evaluating possible acquisitions for a while," Levin said. "With respect to code search, we were looking for a company out there that offered a very strong community and a Web site that developers respected, especially open-source developers."

More than 30,000 users visit Koders.com each day, according to Black Duck. A free search engine there can tap some 766 million lines of open-source code written in more than 30 languages and associated with 28 software licenses, the company said. The search engine will remain free.

Koders also sold a pair of commercial products meant to operate securely inside a firewall, indexing private code bases.

The company's technology will be rolled into Black Duck's existing software portfolio, which includes Code Center, a product that allows users to tap Black Duck's repository of open-source components and develop a list of approved assets for use within their teams.

Black Duck's customers will see no additional charge for the search capability gained by the Koders acquisition, Levin said: "This is almost like part of the upgrade cycle."

Customers of Koders' commercial products aren't so lucky, though.

They will be able to use Koders.com, but the commercial search products will no longer be available on a stand-alone basis, according to Levin. "We will be reaching out to [Koders customers] now. They will either become Code Center customers or start using the Web site more actively."

In addition, Koders' founder and CEO, Darren Rush, will serve as an adviser to Black Duck "for a certain period of time," Levin said.

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