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How Open Source Has Influenced Windows Server 2008 145

willdavid writes to tell us that Sam Ramji over at Port25 has a nice succinct list of the major open source principles that have been used while developing Windows Server 2008. "Overall, we've learned and continue to learn from open source development principles. These are making their way into the mindset, development practices, and ultimately into the products we bring to market. I've focused here on 'what Microsoft has learned from Open Source' - and ironically, I've agreed to do a panel at OSBC on 3/25 with Jim Zemlin of the Linux Foundation on 'what Open Source can learn from Microsoft'. As all of the different organizations in IT continue to evolve, we'll learn from each others' best practices and make increasingly better software. As in science, this incremental improvement will move all of us forward."
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How Open Source Has Influenced Windows Server 2008

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  • by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Friday February 29, 2008 @02:32PM (#22602878) Journal
    I see no reason to believe Microsoft on OOXML. Besides, it's a shitty, unimplementable format.
  • by rmdir -r * ( 716956 ) on Friday February 29, 2008 @02:47PM (#22603054)

    Indeed. I, for one, am happy that the programs I was running on a Linux 1.0 kernel will run flawlessly on the Linux 2.6 kernel without modification

    You want to run buggy versions of GCC and Apache?

    All joking aside, as long as you didn't use glib/statically compiled your application, I believe Linux 1.0 apps WILL run flawlessly on Linux 2.6 kernels. The kernel's userspace ABI has been very stable.

    (Of course internal ABI/API stability has historically been on the order of six months :P).

  • by DrYak ( 748999 ) on Friday February 29, 2008 @03:14PM (#22603472) Homepage

    yeah, they've learned all kinds of stuff from Open Source.

    As Henry Spencer has said (and also as quoted by some commentators on the original page) :

    Those who do not understand Unix are condemned to reinvent it, poorly.

    Microsoft just fails to understand what actually makes the success of Linux and F/LOSS, and thus they are only ble to pull out pale copy of what they think they've seen in order to fill such PR announcements.


    As an example, their entry about "Modular architectures" is almost funny if not tragic, citing and Mozilla Firefox as examples (which are actually criticized by the Linux community sometimes for being too bloated). What makes *nices systems cool isn't the ability to stuff plugins into big apps, what makes them cool is the "Unix way" : programs that just do 1 thing but do it well. Modularity is about all these small single-function programs and all those libraries (for ex.: pattern finding, on-the-fly compression, conversion filters, multimedia processing, etc) that can be freely played with by the user and assembled into more complex never-intended-for-this-usage construction, which forms the basis for huge application like those cited above. Application like VLC aren't an example of modularity, but an example of what modularity enables by putting together a bunch of functions already provided by libraries.

    Also the ultimate advantage of F/LOSS is about freedom and the feeling that the software you have belongs to you. Something that is completely un-achievable with Microsoft style softwares.
  • by HermMunster ( 972336 ) on Friday February 29, 2008 @04:11PM (#22604372)
    Microsoft used to contact companies during the 80s that were developing products. The ideas that were coming out were quite incredible. Pen computing was one of them. It was reported over and over again that Microsoft would ask for a presentation of the ideas of a given company's product and then a few months later announce that they were adding this or that feature into Windows. Why would anyone who was going after venture capital to bring a product to market survive with the dominant criminal monopolist announcing competing technologies to be incorporated into the OS? In the 80s this scenario played out endlessly.

    This is what Microsoft did to pen computing. Do we have pen computing today? No. Because Microsoft announced pen windows. Pen computing died. Then so went pen windows.

    Were some of these companies responsible for their actions? Absolutely. They helped their own demise. The lesson learned from Microsoft is not to demonstrate your product to them for they will steal the ideas, just as they are stealing the ideas of the open source community under the guise of learning from them and teaching back. Microsoft will not do anything for free.

    Apple showed Microsoft their version of the Mac prior to the official release. They wanted Microsoft to develop their word processor and spreadsheet for it. Microsoft did that, but they also took all the ideas and made Windows. When confronted Gates simply slapped Jobs in the face telling him to grow up. What was Jobs to do? His product demanded applications and Microsoft was a leading developer, even though they'd purchased their Macintosh word and excel programs from other companies.

    With open source it is still subject to the stealing of technological ideas from a closed source vendor but that's part of the benefit. Open Source benefits by the exposure of companies such as Microsoft stealing other's ideas instead of developing them themselves, which they seem nearly incapable of doing.

    Essentially, Microsoft has created over the past 2 decades the air of distrust due to outright theft and manipulative practices that ultimately were deemed illegal by the court system.

    What is best is that the open source community continue it's uninfluenced progress toward the time when all software is developed in the same manner.

Some people manage by the book, even though they don't know who wrote the book or even what book.