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Oracle Operating Systems Sun Microsystems

OpenSolaris Governing Board Dissolves Itself 198

mysidia writes "Last month, it was mentioned that the OpenSolaris governing board issued an ultimatum to Oracle. It turns out that Oracle continued to ignore requests to appoint a liaison after the governing board's demands. This morning, the board unanimously passed a resolution to dissolve itself. Source code changes are no longer available, and it would appear that OpenSolaris and community involvement in the development of Solaris have been killed as rumored. We recently discussed a 'Spork' of OpenSolaris called Illumos. Perhaps now, this will have a chance at becoming a true fork."
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OpenSolaris Governing Board Dissolves Itself

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  • by alfredos ( 1694270 ) on Monday August 23, 2010 @02:55PM (#33345394)
    With so much core OS work going to Linux and most of the remainder going to *BSD, which also has already ZFS well underway... What do theyhave to attract devs?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:05PM (#33345542)

    Sorry if you missed it but many of the OpenSolaris "devs" were either directly employed by Sun or companies with close ties to SUN. There was never any real grassroots development of OpenSolaris, and despite all the hype about what "may" happen post Oracle any further development is going exactly where it went before, nowhere.

  • by bsdaemonaut ( 1482047 ) on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:06PM (#33345556)

    Nothing, but if we always did the sensible thing we'd miss out on much of the good software that we have today, such as Linux. There was a time that when it offered very little. It happened to be in the right place at the right time and today we get to enjoy what came about because of it. In regards to OpenSolaris, honestly the whole thing makes me a little sad. I realize commercial Solaris is still around, but it seems like every year we have less choices. I don't know about you, but I don't feel like that's a good thing.

  • by Kjella ( 173770 ) on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:14PM (#33345668) Homepage

    I'd say slim at this point. It doesn't help that all CDDL code is incompatiable with all GPL code so they got plenty wheels that need reinventing unless there's a BSD library for it. Yes, I know you can say the same about the GPL but there's not nearly as much that Linux would want. ZFS and DTrace would be two big ones though, but hopefully the concepts can be incorporated in Linux even if the code can not. Then again, if it'd been GPL then Linux would probably have scavenged all of it already, I guess that was the point of making it GPL-incompatible...

  • by mr exploiter ( 1452969 ) on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:19PM (#33345738)

    This move by Oracle reminds me yahoo in the .com era. Open Solaris was not a revenue source but it was important as the means to get developers interested in Solaris. I don't think there will be much development or support for solaris from the open source community from now on.

  • Only a good thing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MonsterTrimble ( 1205334 ) <> on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:21PM (#33345766)

    I think this is a good thing for everyone. Hear me out, I'm not an idiot, or at least I'm trying not to be!

    Solaris, unlike the other big two open source operating systems - Linux & BSD - has always had the problem of the double edged sword because it always had to serve Sun, which in turn supported it. Now with Oracle punting Solaris to the curb, the community can really see what it's made of. Whether Solaris is an also-ran or if the community can really go full tilt and go in directions that it couldn't because of it's omnipresent master is entirely up to the people who support it. The future is bright for smaller form factors, as well as servers (again) so now it's time to see if they are big time players or another name to the pile of failed OSes.

    I wish them well.

  • by samkass ( 174571 ) on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:22PM (#33345782) Homepage Journal

    I realize commercial Solaris is still around, but it seems like every year we have less choices. I don't know about you, but I don't feel like that's a good thing.

    I kind of felt the same way in the late 90's when BeOS was dying and the MacOS's future looked bleak. Linux had extremely weak driver support, and OS/2 had finally given up the ghost. It looked like Windows might become the only survivor of the 90's. But today there is a new diaspora of OS distributions and platforms. These things ebb and flow. My advice is to not worry so much about choice in general and just try to find something you like and contribute to it.

  • by Fished ( 574624 ) <> on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:34PM (#33345954)

    Oracle didn't care, because Oracle has said that they are no longer interested in having an open development model for Solaris. In fact, the fact that Oracle doesn't care is why they're dissolving in the first place. Solaris users don't care because, let's face it... does anybody actually use OpenSolaris? I work for a huge Solaris shop, and we use stock, Sun-supported Solaris. If we wanted an Open Source operating system, we'd use Linux. We use Solaris for huge database servers that are too big to run Linux (mostly Oracle DB.)

    So, that leaves OpenSolaris developers. Look, this is the risk you take when you work on a project dominated by one company, especially when you have a license like the CDDL. I feel bad that you're in this position, but it was kind of predictable, and I really think you're missing the boat with Illumos. You're unlikely to get enough interest to ever make a go of it with Oracle being disinterested. Go work on making Linux better instead!

  • by KnightBlade ( 1074408 ) on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:42PM (#33346052)
    Buy your competition and then kill their products. This seems familiar. Where have I heard this one before....
  • by amorsen ( 7485 ) <> on Monday August 23, 2010 @03:48PM (#33346144)

    There's basically Windows, traditional Unix with X11 (with only Linux, *BSD and AIX left), and Unix + different UI (Mac OS X). Plus some embedded systems and some mainframe-like systems, but Unix is eating both.

    We aren't exactly witnessing a Cambrian explosion.

  • by vadim_t ( 324782 ) on Monday August 23, 2010 @04:56PM (#33347036) Homepage

    This is slightly off topic, but there's a certain form of irony here.

    Licensing issues is the reason that Linux has no ZFS support.

    True. But what's the reason for that?

    In the words of Danese Cooper, who is no longer with Sun, one of the reasons for basing the CDDL on the Mozilla license was that the Mozilla license is GPL-incompatible. Cooper stated, at the 6th annual Debian conference, that the engineers who had written the Solaris kernel requested that the license of OpenSolaris be GPL-incompatible. "Mozilla was selected partially because it is GPL incompatible. That was part of the design when they released OpenSolaris. [...] the engineers who wrote Solaris [...] had some biases about how it should be released, and you have to respect that".

    Quoted from wikipedia, original source for the quote [].

    IMO it's most likely that there was an explicit intention of being Linux incompatible as well (meaning, not just because it happens to be GPL licensed). After all, why would Sun give such a gift to its greatest competitor? I think that it doesn't really matter what Linux was licensed under, the license for ZFS would be guaranteed to be incompatible with it anyway.

    No, seriously, you are forbidden by the license to re-license GPL code under non-GPL licenses, even if they are stricter... see sections 1, 2, 6, and 10 of the GPLv2.

    That's kind of the point of it, yes. I'm not sure what you mean by "stricter" here though. Additional restrictions, like for instance non-commercial usage only would bring it closer to a proprietary license, which is entirely against the intent of it. If you mean things like the AGPL, it would be very difficult to figure out which additional restrictions would be allowable due to favouring what the GPL tries to accomplish, and which wouldn't due to going counter to it, and write some sort of rule that would allow the former but not the later.

    The ZFS issues? The term for this is "hoist by your own petard."

    Nope. The term for this is "hoist by Sun's very intentional decision to make it be that way".

    After all, if Sun were all about complete freedom they would have went with a BSD license. It would have been very easy and they wouldn't have needed to spend time on making yet another license. There must be a reason why that wasn't suitable.

  • Yes, I am quite aware of how the term is "commonly" used, which is precisely the precondition for my complaint. Otherwise, why complain at all? I'm not sure what your argument is.

    If we distinguish "junk science" from actual "science," why not "junk revisionism" or "negationism" from legitimate "revisionist history?"

    Since the vocabulary needed for talking about a worthwhile and valid way of reexamining history has been overloaded to mean the same thing as its false and invalid counterfeit, legitimate revisionism suffers.

    The problem is compounded every time someone pulls out the fallacy, "That's revisionist history!"

    Imagine if politically motivated rubbish and honest research required the equivocal term, "science". One of those disciplines, the one more difficult to justify to the layman, might suffer as a result. Whenever we wanted to debunk something, we'd just hurl the epithet, "science", at it.

    That's what I'm complaining about. It's just a crazy, petty Stallman-esque neurosis I have.

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