Question:  will NFPA trump your contract re revealing codes
    The following are excerpts from NFPA 72 2013 referencing Site-Specific Software, which seem to contradict your Copyright clause for programming in our contracts.
    “Software programmed by STAMPSCO is the intellectual property of STAMPSCO and any unauthorized use of same, including derivative works, is strictly prohibited and may violate Federal Copyright laws, Title 17 of the United States Code, and may subject violator to civil and criminal penalties”.
    Does NFPA code trump our contract with the customer?  Please advise.
    NFPA does not trump the contract and doesn't  come into play unless that NFPA provision is
part of the building code in your jurisdiction.  If it is the code then we  can modify the contract to say you won't comply with it. The contract does not require you to comply with NFPA unless it's adopted in the building code or AHJ requirements.  If the AHJ is demanding compliance ask for statutory authority.
    Also, review the NFPA requirement carefully.  The change to the Commerical All in One contract [actually several versions ago - in 2013] added the provision that all programming and source codes remained the alarm company's intellectual property.  The goal was to ensure that competitors would not be able to come in and take over the system after getting the programming codes.  Without those codes the entire fire alarm system would have to be reprogrammed.  The NFPA goal seems to be to enable the subscriber to get the fire alarm system up and working, but I think only the most sophisticated subscribers would have the engineering staff to accomplish that; most would have to call the fire alarm company in to perform the service necessary to get the fire alarm operable.  The fire alarm industry has real interest in preventing subscribers from accessing the fire alarm programming, even under emergency conditions.  It's the fire alarm company who is monitoring the system and who will ultimately be looked at if the system is deemed deficient in detecting a fire.  

Excerpts from NFPA* Site-Specific Software.
    A. With many software-based fire systems, a copy of the
site-specific software is required to restore system operation if a
catastrophic system failure should occur. Without a back-up copy
readily available on site, recovery of system operation by authorized
service personnel can be substantially delayed.
The intent of this requirement is to provide authorized
service personnel with an on-site copy of the site-specific software.
The on-site copy should provide a means to recover the
last installed and tested version of the site-specific operation of
the system. This typically would be an electronic copy of the
source files required to load an external programming device
with the site-specific data. This requirement does not extend
to the system executive software, nor does it require that the
external programmer software if required be stored on site.
It is intended that this copy of the software be an electronic
version stored on a non-rewritable media containing all of the
file(s) or data necessary to restore the system and not just a
printed version of the operation stored on electronic media.
One example of a non-rewritable medium is a CD-R. For software-based systems, a copy of the site-specific                                               
software shall be provided to the system owner or owner’s
designated representative. A copy of the site-specific software shall be stored
on-site in nonvolatile, non-erasable, non-rewritable memory. The system owner shall be responsible for maintaining
these records for the life of the system for examination by
any authority having jurisdiction. Paper or electronic media
shall be permitted. Executive Software. Control and supervisory program
that manages the execution of all other programs
and directly or indirectly causes the required functions of
the product to be performed. Executive software is sometimes
referred to as firmware, BIOS, or executive program.
    This would be resident in the FA panel. Site-Specific Software. Program that is separate
from, but controlled by, the executive software that allows
inputs, outputs, and system configuration to be selectively
defined to meet the needs of a specific installation. Typically
it defines the type and quantity of hardware, customized
labels, and the specific operating features of a system.
    This is the program we would write to run the panel.
     23.2.2 Software and Firmware Control. A record of installed software and firmware version
numbers shall be maintained at the location of the fire alarm
control unit.* The compatible software or firmware versions shall
be documented at the initial acceptance test and at any re acceptance
    7.2.1 Where documentation is required by the enforcing authority,
the following list shall represent the minimum documentation
required for all fire alarm and emergency communications
systems, including new systems and additions or
alterations to existing systems:
    (11) Copy of site-specific software, where applicable

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