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OpenSolaris a Facade August 17, 2006

Posted by rjdohnert in Opinions, Tech News.

OpenSolaris isn’t a true open-source project, but rather a “facade,” because Sun Microsystems doesn’t share control of it with outsiders, executives from rival IBM say.

“Sun holds it all behind the firewall. The community sees nothing,” Dan Frye, the IBM vice president who runs the company’s Linux Technology Center, said Tuesday in an interview at the LinuxWorld Conference and Expo. “It’s a facade. There’s lots of marketing, but no community to speak of.”

Link to story

My Thoughts; Load of crap. Sun has done a lot to build a community around OpenSolaris and continues to build those partnerships with developers and they are actually giving parts back that other systems and developers can use. What do I mean? Well if you see a peice in the Linux kernel that you like and think that it can enhance your product, well, if you use that peice your entire code base becomes subject to the licensing restrictions of the GPL. With Sun CDDL and BSD License that doesnt happen. Thats how come DTrace can be utilized in FreeBSD, it can be used in Windows and it can be used in Mac OS X. Thats also how come FreeBSD Jails can be used in Solaris and a form of it used in Mac OS X and thats how come Project Evil from BSD can be used in Solaris and OpenSolaris and Im pretty sure it may make its way into Mac OS X sooner than later. Did he say the community sees nothing?  Well at OpenSolaris.org Sun has put up everything, a complete set of developer documentation as well as other reference material and code.  Its source browser on the site is a huge hit.  Sun and Microsoft as well when they have developer conferences put up webcasts from all the keynotes and presentations. LinuxWorld has been in session for a while, where are the webcasts? The slide presentations? There are none. Its called sharing and I think Sun has done a much better job of it than the Linux community.  Where are the Linux communities components that can be used in other systems? There arent any. The contributors to Linux are in a self contained community. The OpenSolaris community does lag behind the BSD and Linux communities in terms of contributions and community members sure, but its only been a year and I think they are making tremendous progress.


1. Erik - August 17, 2006

Where is public source repository?

2. RussH - August 17, 2006

Their repository is here http://cvs.opensolaris.org/source/

3. Erik - August 17, 2006

Stupid me :).
Thanks a lot!

4. Erik - August 17, 2006

About CDDL.

If my feature gets into OpenSolaris… is Sun able to get it, make changes to code, change it license and put it into Solaris without giving it back to me with new changes?

5. rjdohnert - August 18, 2006

Sun can change it, they can put it into the Solaris binary but its been my experience that if its an OpenSolaris module, it stays with OpenSolaris as well and if they change it for the better it will stay in the OpenSolaris repository changes and all.

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