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back to article Apache daddy walks out on OpenSolaris

AMD and Microsoft should take note that open source strategies bring painful problems. Sun Microsystems knows this all too well. Just as Microsoft said it’s opening its APIs and AMD made its latest contribution to open source, controversy again bubbled up for Sun’s much-vaunted OpenSolaris project. Apache Server co-founder Roy …

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Silver badge

Not to be a d**k but....

Open Source will always be overrun by the balding white man in the corner office. Case in point Ray Fielding resigns because he "isn't happy" with things. The Ray's of the world (Open Sourcies) built their Utopian "community" on good will and giving - successful businesses are built on "self" and taking. The communal giver is always going to lose because:

They don't want to fight.

They don't know how to fight.

They don't have the resources to fight even if the other things were untrue.

They only know how to run away when the going gets tough.

Open Source is good for the market because you get lots of really talented people to design products for free - then you run them off and take the work for peanuts! It's hard to beat a cheap product - big profit business plan.

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wrong

Solomon, you're way too pessimistic. One does not hear such stories of bad open source citizenship about IBM or HP, and they are two of the richest companies on earth.

profits and open source can coexist, but it isn't easy. oh, here's another success - SugarCRM - they've enabled their community contributors to make money by providing a marketplace for add-ons to their CRM system.

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Coat

Wrong subtitle

Clearly. As the article is not so clear about who's whose daddy.

Mine's "Frat Brat" blazer.

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Bronze badge

Oh, stop the whining!

I read Fielding's statement of resignation, and I'm just not impressed by him. OK, so he doesn't like who is controlling the swirls on the cake's frosting. So what? If you want to play in their sandbox, its their rules! That's all there is to it.

Fielding wants to hold his breath until he turns blue? OK, sign me up for pay-per-view!

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@Greg

Yes, and hippies built Snapple, but exceptions to the rule aren't a standard that I can build generalizations around.

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Black Helicopters

@Greg

err, remind me again of something IBM has contributed to the community (ie, not something bought, not something thats unmarketable junk being offloaded, not something buggy (eg JFS))? They've certainly not open sourced anything as big as So.laris

Where's OpenAIX? OpenDB2, OpenWebsphere? Ditto HP, wheres OpenHPUX? Nada, rien, nowt. Certainly in the case of IBM, I see nothing but take take take in open source cropping up in their 'solutions'.

In the case of Solaris, I think one or two strings attached is ok, for the price (free!) you are getting one hell of a deal (a truly enterprise class OS + complete software stack). Sun truly are major open source players, and yes, they sometimes don't get it, but show me another big company embracing open source like they are... Oh, and show me someone else opening their latest hardware?

I have to agree though that this trademark issue is just dumb. I guess Ben Rockwood (www.cuddletech.com/blog) has the best overview on this IMHO.

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Linux

Sun has had some problems

trying to change too quickly, I think it will do much better by acquiring dual licensed businesses like MySQL which have already learned how to balance open, and profit without having these explosions (quite as often). As long as I can remember people have left open source projects in a huff, it sucks but that's the nature of the beast. Be respectful and thank the nice man on his way out.

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open source (tm)

get real, sun open sourced this, that's good.

Why force them to do other things like saving the planet, eating fish or giving away trademarks.

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Flame

@Mr V

IBM has over 1000 employees working on OSS, leads 80+ OSS projects and contributes to over 150+ OSS projects. For example - IBM Led Xerces, Xalan, SOAP, Web Services, Portlet, GEF, EMF, XSD, AspectJ, Equinox, OSS projects. Not to mention Eclipse! Handed over 500 patents to OSS. Apache Derby. Gave code to Mozilla for accessibility and speech. IBM recently - leads Open AJAX and partners with Dojo. Apache Tuscany, Open Healthcare Framework and Apache lucene. etc etc etc

To counter the unmarketable junk comment - have you noticed that pretty much every IBM closed source product is based on Eclipse these days? You may think its unmarketable junk but IBM obviously didnt when they gave it away.... Few million lines of code there and likely used by a lot more ppl than Open Solaris.

So how do you get the idea that IBM are not a big contributer to the OSS community? You'd probably have OOXML if it wasn't for IBM ;-)

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Coat

Good that I noticed this....

I'd been asked yesterday by a (heavy Solaris using) client to take a look at OpenSolaris as an alternative to OpenBSD for migrating some of his systems to F/LOSS software with a view towards having greater control over his systems. Given what's been going down with the OGB v. Sun (thanks, Mr V!), I'm going to recommend against OS. I think Ben Rockwood is probably right: Sun, institutionally and among most of its people, seriously want to do The Right Thing but there are a number of VIPs and VSIPs who are, at best, unclear on the concept. This does not bode well for future clarity from Sun.

Mine's the Kevlar one over there, with the flame-retardant coating and attached tinfoil hat...

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The Business Dynamics are changing

I think that the way that people do business has and is changing. I think that wereas before big corporations were the way to do great business. Nowadays having a top heavy corporation is a liability. Open source done well and OPEN can generate a revenue stream, but you just can't expect the cash cows of yester year like MS Office and MS Windows. So, the answer is reduce your overheads per revenue stream. Smaller companies can adapt faster and even drive such a fast changing environment like open source. Therefore I suggest that if MS wants to compete and compete properly 5 to 10 years from now in the software (not service) industry. They may need to seriously consider downsizing and concentrating on core competencies instead of trying to have a finger in every pie in the world, same goes for the others IBM, Sun, etc.

I could be wrong but thats my evolving opinion.

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cor

Yawn, the same old 'Open source = Hippie' comments

@Solomon "Open Source is good for the market because you get lots of really talented people to design products for free - then you run them off and take the work for peanuts! It's hard to beat a cheap product - big profit business plan."

I guess you've never read the GPL v1-3? A few corporations have found out the hard way that this is just not true: Cisco, TomTom, Verizon, Motorola....

The application of jaded old-fashioned business plans may be tempting to old hacks who have not caught up with current methods. But be assured that the new generation is only too aware of what can be achieved by applying new strategies. Ask General Motors how they ended up sh1t creek, while Porsche are still making more money than they can count.

@ Brian "If you want to play in their sandbox, its their rules"

- Yes but you don't have to play the ostrich. There are enough senior execs with their heads in the sand.

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Dead Vulture

They didn't have to open Solaris

Ya know, Sun didn't have to open up Solaris since its their baby. However, if they are going to use the word "Open", it needs to be OPEN!! It's not that hard to understand. I foresee a lot of old-style companies wanting to jump onto the "Open" bandwagon but not have the faintest inkling what it really means, or else they are going to bad-mouth it and still not know what it really means.

If you can't be truly open, DON'T DO IT! It's that simple.

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Gates Horns

@ Tom King - "Open"

Try telling that to Microsoft with its "Office Open XML".

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