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This repository contains build files to generate free release binaries of Microsoft's VSCode. When we speak of "free software", we're talking about freedom, not price.
When we [Microsoft] build Visual Studio Code, we do exactly this. We clone the vscode repository, we lay down a customized product.json that has Microsoft specific functionality (telemetry, gallery, logo, etc.), and then produce a build that we release under our license.
When you clone and build from the vscode repo, none of these endpoints are configured in the default product.json. Therefore, you generate a "clean" build, without the Microsoft customizations, which is by default licensed under the MIT license
This repo exists so that you don't have to download+build from source. The build scripts in this repo clone Microsoft's vscode repo, run the build commands, and upload the resulting binaries to GitHub releases. These binaries are licensed under the MIT license. Telemetry is disabled.
Microsoft's build process (which we are running to build the binaries) does download additional files. This was brought up in Microsoft/vscode#49159 and Microsoft/vscode#45978. These are the packages downloaded during build:
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