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OpenSolaris Governing Board Closing Shop?

CmdrTaco posted more than 4 years ago | from the so-it-comes-to-this dept.

Open Source 234

echolinux writes "Frustrated by Oracle's refusal to interact with the OpenSolaris community or speak with the OpenSolaris Governing Board, the OGB has issued an ultimatum to Oracle: designate a liaison to the OGB by August 16th or the board will 'take action at the August 23 meeting to trigger the clause in the OGB charter that will return control of the community to Oracle.'"

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FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901346)

Where are my GNAA homies?

Re:FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901706)

With your mom.

Captcha: disgusts

Re:FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901890)

Over the lifespan of Windows XP, Apple will have dropped support for around ten operating systems. Discuss.

Sad (4, Interesting)

0racle (667029) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901444)

Oracle seems determined to destroy everything they acquired from Sun. We had 2 OpenSolaris machines since Zones and ZFS are just hot shit and several SunFire servers. We're moving the OpenSolaris installs to FreeBSD and are probably going to be looking at HP or IBM machines in the future.

Re:Sad (4, Insightful)

allcar (1111567) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901570)

It is sad. I find it really depressing to find the Oracle logos all over the Sun site and Java downloads. I guess that Sun were just too nice a company to prosper in the cut throat world of modern IT.

Re:Sad (5, Interesting)

Mark Round (211258) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901998)

They’ve completely alienated and scared off the community around OpenSolaris, killed any lines of communication by clamping down on employee blogs and ignored open letters from highly influential and important community members begging for *any* kind of information. They’ve forbidden Sun/Oracle employees from heading up the Solaris user groups and booted the meetings out of their buildings; turned Solaris 10 into a 30-day trial, and pushed back the 2010.x release of OpenSolaris with no word as to it’s planned release date, or even if it is being continued as a product.

Oracle are doing a superb job of killing Solaris - at least, as we knew it to be.

Oracle just really doesn't care about Solaris as a general purpose OS (there's no money in it), and it makes sense although I personally find it tragic. It's probably why they're also killing all their OEM deals. I strongly suspect Oracle's overall aim is to have Solaris relegated to the role of running as the bottom layer in an Oracle "database machine" or Java appserver bundle.

It excels in these tasks, and it would obviously fit into Oracle's stated goal of being a one stop shop, where if you want to run Oracle, they'll sell you the bundle - hardware, storage, OS and software. If they no longer want it to be a dominant general purpose datacenter OS, then their approach makes sense. They don't need a "community" around the product, they don't need open source developers porting applications to it, and they certainly don't need the overhead of running and managing a community portal anymore.

I think the way they are going about it reprehensible, and it's a tragic end for such a historic and innovative OS but you can see why. Larry is all about the $$$, and Sun's approach just wasn't bringing in the big bucks.

Re:Sad (2, Interesting)

hitmark (640295) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902250)

when the market goes down, the companies goes vertical.

heck, it may well be that oracle wont sell a stack, but rather lease it; with some kind of yearly support contract.

Re:Sad (2, Insightful)

Hylandr (813770) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902532)

When I was on the Oracle / Solaris website recently I noticed the environment was very old guard. Hailing to a day when Unix knowledge was a rare and expensive commodity.

You could see it in the language that was used, 60's business rhetoric regurgitated for today's business masses that might still buy it. Now, I am looking for contracts that are migrating away from Solaris. Going to try and catch this wave early.

- Dan.

Re:Sad (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902674)

Yeah, god forbid that a company actually make money and stay afloat, that's just a fucking sacrilege.

How is it "tragic" exactly? How is it "tragic" that they're cutting off a part of their business that is entirely unprofitable? Sun had plenty of those, it's why they're not around any more. The source for your beloved OS is still out there -- if you care about it so much why don't you do what every elitist OSS asshole says and compile it yourself? You said it yourself, "there's no money in it." That doesn't mean you can't use it.

No, what you really find tragic (but can't actually say due to your affinity for OpenSolaris) is that nobody CARES about OpenSolaris enough to support it or the community around it any longer. I suppose I could understand that, if I had a personal "attachment" to the OS, but I don't. Neither do they, and there's no reason why they should either.

Maybe instead of stamping their feet and declaring an "ultimatum" against Oracle they should offer up some practical reasons why ANYONE should give a shit about OpenSolaris? Go ahead and say "ZFS," the last bastion of a former Sun worshipper.

Re:Sad (4, Interesting)

jackspenn (682188) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902760)

I guess that Sun were just too nice a company to prosper

Well that and they were way over priced ...

Well that and the Open Source Community caught up with them ...

Well that and they didn't have a long-term solution/strategy to ensure new entries into the tech field could gain experience/skills on their products so they would be comfortable recommending them. Sun relied on the old guard to recommend Sun, while newer entries onto the computer field were more comfortable recommending solutions they had experience with.

As a result apache replaced Sun's web server as the standard.

Red Hat (and others) took away Solaris server market share.

New startups began by running Oracle and other databases on Linux (or even Windows) servers in the initial low funding development stages and then when it came time to go into production, some of them didn't bother with moving to Sun hardware and Solaris, and instead remained with what worked and building it out to be "good-enough" for less money and less headaches.

I was in college from 1995-1999. The guys who loved going to the lab became Solaris die-hards, because that was what the school at that time ran (it is now LINUX, LINUX and more LINUX). But I preferred working in my apartment, so when I had took C, LISP, and JAVA classes that were focused on the fundamentals of code, things like recursion or objects, my teachers didn't demand I used the Solaris workstation, just that I solved the problem and got a strong foundation. So I installed Red hat on a backup PC and worked by using the same languages, with the same libraries, with the same text editors only on LINUX as the labs used on Solaris. At the time, I was the minority, but with each new class the LINUX users increased and those willing to invest in learning Solaris decreased, not to mention a larger and larger percentage of Solaris guys knew both.

When I went to work for a startup in California, they couldn't afford the quotes for Sun, so I purchased three DELL servers and installed Linux on them to accomplish the same task. Now nobody asks for Solaris admins, they ask for Linux admins.

Re:Sad (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 4 years ago | (#32903028)

I find it really depressing to find the Oracle logos all over the Sun site and Java downloads.

Yeah. It really makes me worry about Java's future. Is there any other comparable cross-platform language that runs in a managed environment?

Re:Sad (1)

bleh-of-the-huns (17740) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901650)

Oddly enough, I went the other way around about 6 months ago because I wanted a better implementation of ZFS and iSCSI. Freebsd's implementation is far behind OSOL, and iscsi is not even close to being functional in 8. iscsi works in 7, but zfs does not.

It's unfortunate, but I see OSOL dieing a slow horrible death at the hands of Oracle.

Re:Sad (1)

0racle (667029) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901688)

Oh, we unfortunately are not using ZFS on FreeBSD because it's not as stable, but it was the Jails that pushed us to FreeBSD instead of Linux which is what runs most of our other systems.

I'd just like to interject for a moment. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901926)

What you're referring to as Linux, is in fact, GNU/Linux, or as I've recently taken to calling it, GNU plus Linux. Linux is not an operating system unto itself, but rather another free component of a fully functioning GNU system made useful by the GNU corelibs, shell utilities and vital system components comprising a full OS as defined by POSIX.

Many computer users run a modified version of the GNU system every day, without realizing it. Through a peculiar turn of events, the version of GNU which is widely used today is often called "Linux", and many of its users are not aware that it is basically the GNU system, developed by the GNU Project.

There really is a Linux, and these people are using it, but it is just a part of the system they use. Linux is the kernel: the program in the system that allocates the machine's resources to the other programs that you run. The kernel is an essential part of an operating system, but useless by itself; it can only function in the context of a complete operating system. Linux is normally used in combination with the GNU operating system: the whole system is basically GNU with Linux added, or GNU/Linux. All the so-called "Linux" distributions are really distributions of GNU/Linux.

Re:I'd just like to interject for a moment. (1, Funny)

S.O.B. (136083) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902048)

I didn't realize RMS posted on Slashdot.

Re:I'd just like to interject for a moment. (-1, Flamebait)

0racle (667029) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902094)

Oh blow it out your ass. Excuse me, your GNU/ASS.

Re:I'd just like to interject for a moment. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902808)

Better than having an OpenAss, I would think. Maybe not in your case though, you fucking Sun-worshipping faggot. Now go stick your dick in your old SPARC machine and stop polluting the Internet you fucking waste of oxygen.

Re:I'd just like to interject for a moment. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902978)

Have you ever seen a Gnu? Gnu/Ass is not so attractive. And if you shit daily, like all Red Blooded Americans, you have an Open/Ass every day.

Re:I'd just like to interject for a moment. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902980)

Personally, I prefer GNU/Solaris. /usr/sfw/bin is what makes it a usable OS.

Re:Sad (5, Insightful)

Third Position (1725934) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901700)

This is not exactly a surprise. Oracle has a deep and abiding interest in Oracle's bottom line. How does Open Solaris contribute to that? It doesn't, hence Oracle losing interest fast.

As painful as it may be to acknowledge, this is actually a rational approach. Look no further than the fact that Oracle ended up eating Sun, not the other way around. I like Free Stuff as much as the next guy, but that doesn't change the fact that if you're in business to make money, you'd damn well better focus on things that make you money.

Re:Sad (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901964)

Well developed open projects however allow for greater mindshare leading to more people using their commercial offerings. Look at Red Hat, because RHL was well used on people's personal desktops, it made sense for them to push a company towards Red Hat's commercial products. Same thing with Ubuntu, because many people who use Linux are comfortable with Ubuntu, when a small business looks to consider Linux, Ubuntu is their first choice. Solaris has a lot of features that could be very handy for businesses, but without experience, most tech people are going to recommend BSD or Linux because it is what they have worked with.

Support a community well and it will pay you back. Alienate a community and you are suddenly competing against better entrenched products.

Re:Sad (1)

Mark Round (211258) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902224)

Not if they don't want or need a community around their product. I posted about this above, but I suspect Oracle are of the opinion that there's no money to be made selling Solaris as a general purpose OS. They probably just want it as the bottom layer in a hardware & software bundle, tuned to running Oracle or Java workloads.

Re:Sad (1)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 4 years ago | (#32903272)

"They probably just want it as the bottom layer in a hardware & software bundle, tuned to running Oracle or Java workloads."

I think that is the point exactly. I think Oracle inherited all this OSS stuff from Sun and they're still scratching their heads trying to figure out how it will fit into their bottom line. I know Oracle is not new to OSS, I think InnoDB was open, but the Sun acquisition dramatically expanded their OSS offerings and I think their still playing catchup with understanding exactly how all this technology fits with their profit plans.

Re:Sad (4, Interesting)

Timex (11710) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902340)

Support a community well and it will pay you back. Alienate a community and you are suddenly competing against better entrenched products.

If you'll pardon the dated reference, this isn't the first time something like this has happened. One case that comes to mind is Apple's ending the life of the Apple II line. Sure, it would have been a virtual nightmare to keep backward compatibility as they moved forward with the series, but because of the way they went about it, many of their big fans jumped ship to the PC-compatible camp, rather than shifting to the Mac. Apple could have had a larger following with their Mac line, had they tried to make the change a little more gently, but they didn't, and they are only recently beginning to recover from it.

If Oracle is careful, they won't make any waves in doing what they think is the best action to take, but somehow I get the feeling that they're past caring what anyone else thinks.

Re:Sad (4, Insightful)

0racle (667029) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902050)

OpenSolaris as the basis to Solaris 11, or simply dropping Solaris 10 and going with OpenSolaris as the primary OS would have brought a more modern environment and significantly improved package management and patching while still maintaining the expected stability from Solaris. Oracle seems to prefer to keep Solaris archaic. They just killed their best beta platform.

Oracle got rid of the free to download and use Solaris 10 as well. Sun moved that way to entice developers to develop and test on their platform. Oracle, instead of continuing that to keep developers, moved Solaris back to a pay only. Why would anyone pay to develop or test on Solaris when the competitors are free and just as good? Who is going to buy Solaris when the only thing tested on it is Oracle Database? Oracle is shooting itself in the foot.

Re:Sad (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902100)

Oracle could leverage Open Solaris as the ideal Oracle platform.
They could push for high end web solutions to use Oracle+Solaris+Java.
So yes it could be a really good solution for them. Also if they can get enough people using OpenSolaris they will have a well trained pool of sysadmins. OpenSolaris could compete with RHEL and Sun/Oracle can sell support like Red Hat.

Re:Sad (1)

codepunk (167897) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902254)

They could but it would compete with their Linux offering thus adding no value vs development and maintenance costs.

Re:Sad (4, Informative)

Doc Hopper (59070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902444)

Oracle could leverage Open Solaris as the ideal Oracle platform.
They could push for high end web solutions to use Oracle+Solaris+Java.

Actually, Oracle DOES leverage OpenSolaris as an Oracle platform. The 7410 storage platform exclusively runs OpenSolaris under the hood. Bog-standard Solaris wasn't up to the job. We've bought a number of these storage platforms and are testing them out right now; other than annoying production delays due to unavailability of really-honking-big SSDs, they are extremely cool and high-performance storage solutions.

Also the newer T5240 boxes run way better on OpenSolaris than on stock Solaris 10. No ifs, ands, or buts. Better hardware support and faster I/O. You have to be running the 10/09 release of Solaris 10 to even support these boxes at all, and OpenSolaris supported them before they were even released.

Re:Sad (2, Insightful)

qwijibo (101731) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902574)

OpenSolaris provides insight into the directions Solaris is going. I've used my experience with OpenSolaris at home to discuss possible future directions at work once the features work into mainstream Solaris. OpenSolaris is to Solaris what Fedora is to RedHat Enterprise Linux. Giving your customers a chance to preview what's up and coming gives them an opportunity to suggest a direction before it's in the mainstream release. Sure, a lot of deadbeats benefit from making the OS freely available, but getting contributions from the unpaid community and giving your customers reasons to promote your products should be a good enough benefit to justify the business case to keep it going.

I work for a hosting group in a large financial services company. We have over a thousand Linux and Solaris systems we support, with more being added all the time. We have numerous internal groups that need large Oracle databases on Solaris and we're happy to provide that. The people who write standards for the company are telling us to move away from Solaris and either move to Oracle on Linux, or for large databases, go to DB2 on AIX. When we're being told to drop Solaris, we really need something compelling to argue in favor of keeping it around. That is going to be much harder with Oracle's tight lipped approach to letting customers know what's coming up.

At home, I run OpenSolaris using ZFS for all of my storage. I run Ubuntu under VirtualBox to get all of the benefits of ZFS on the hardware with the more user friendly features of Ubuntu as a desktop. This is working out great for my whole family. Unfortunately, it looks like I'm going to have to look for another OS for the bottom of the stack since Oracle appears to be dropping it entirely.

OpenSolaris may not be a direct money maker for Oracle, but it has a very real contribution to their bottom line. With an enterprise database, you can get away with being secretive about everything. With an operating system that is much more widely used, that approach is not wise. Unfortunately, Oracle probably won't realize that until they've permanently lost several large customers.

Re:Sad (1)

DesScorp (410532) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902242)

Oracle seems determined to destroy everything they acquired from Sun. We had 2 OpenSolaris machines since Zones and ZFS are just hot shit and several SunFire servers. We're moving the OpenSolaris installs to FreeBSD and are probably going to be looking at HP or IBM machines in the future.

And just how much money did Oracle make from your two OpenSolaris machines? If you bought them pre-merger, they made nada. Zip.

Oracle doesn't care about you unless you're willing to spend a lot of money. That's not bad, that's just their business model. They're trying to become the Mercedes-Benz of IT. They're going mostly to the high end of the enterprise. They expect to be well paid for both hardware and software. And I suspect Sun will start making more money on the high end if they do it right. I hear people moaning at Slashdot all the time about how Oracle doesn't care about the little guy, the small shop. Well, you know what? You're right, they don't. You're not their target. You don't have enough money to interest them. So it's best for all involved that you DO move your installs to BSD. So Oracle can concentrate on the big paying customers, and you can concentrate on your shop that doesn't pay for operating systems.

Re:Sad (2, Informative)

Doc Hopper (59070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902572)

Oracle doesn't care about you unless you're willing to spend a lot of money.

Correction: Oracle wants you to spend a lot of money, but they care about you as a potential paying customer. For instance, you can pick up a two-user license of Oracle Database for free and run a large production web site on it if you want. Think about your typical MySQL deployment: One user for the web site, and maybe a second user for the administrative user (usually "root"). Oracle gives this away for free for unlimited use.

The goal is to eventually rope you into a larger deployment with more capabilities so you become a paying customer. Always has been.

But I can assure you the sales guys "care" to get your money even if you're only spending a little bit of it. And Oracle spends a ton of money on trial programs, free software (Oracle Enterprise Linux, for instance), and other promotions to eventually drive revenue.

Re:Sad (2, Interesting)

TheLink (130905) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902772)

> They're trying to become the Mercedes-Benz of IT. They're going mostly to the high end of the enterprise.

Climbing up the ladder may work, but don't be surprised by how high and fast Intel, AMD and their partners can climb ;).

DEC and SGI also went for the high end of IT.

HP's HP/UX is good as dead, and they've done a good job killing off Tandem and VMS.

So far IBM is still holding out with their POWER stuff.

Re:Sad (2, Informative)

CAIMLAS (41445) | more than 4 years ago | (#32903294)

We're moving the OpenSolaris installs to FreeBSD

That, is a mistake. I strongly recommend you do some reading about the base requirements for ZFS on FreeBSD as well as its many shortcomings (at least compared to the OpenSolaris implementation).

Just a couple of the shortcomings I've hit against in the past couple months:

* stability issues. Even with the supposed "stable" 8 RELEASE and the 'required' ZFS tuning and hardware, I've had ZFS lock the system. It would appear the only significant difference between the 7.3 and 8 ZFS implementations is that in 8, they've removed the "EXPERIMENTAL!" warning on the opensolaris driver.
* boot mechanisms. There is no 'official' way to boot off a ZFS zpool, and all the ways that exist to get around that shortcoming are poor compromises, won't work from one release to another, or require use of unstable code (USB boot device, grub2, etc.)
* ZFS requires a *minimum* of 4GB of RAM for supposed stable operation. It will use that memory, even on an infrequently accessed file server. You will have stability issues with less, even with the recommended FreeBSD ZFS tweaking.
* Compared to Linux or OpenSolaris, FreeBSD stability - largely related to device drivers - is pathetic and amateur.
* A general "unprofessional asshole" attitude on the mailing lists. "I've discovered a bug, here it is" seems to result in things like "we're not going to fix that, we'll replace the system in the next release" or similar - if any response is made at all (admittedly, the only list I'm currently following is freebsd-usb).
* ALong those lines, the inclusion of incomplete/dysfunctional systems (presumably) simply on the basis of superior design.

Zones, however, would probably be pretty well implemented via jails. Those are cool. But ZFS is, IMO, not a good choice for picking FreeBSD. FreeBSD does a subset of things very well (networking, documentation, infrastructure design and naming), but ZFS is, unfortunately, not one of them (yet).

I'm very concerned that Oracle is going to kill ZFS off. It is one of the coolest, most useful things to come to storage in a long, long time. Hopefully the Linux folks can pull their pants up quickly and come out with something feature comparable.

and alone one dark night (2, Funny)

nimbius (983462) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901450)

on the internet, i felt my coffee mug rumble and the tubes begin to quake...i felt a fork looming in the distance.

Re:and alone one dark night (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901476)

Yeah, except CDDL doesn't allow forking.

Re:and alone one dark night (1)

tenco (773732) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902416)

Yeah, except CDDL doesn't allow forking.

I guess that's why the CDDL is better than the GPL?

Re:and alone one dark night (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902804)

Actually, the CDDL does allow forking.

Re:and alone one dark night (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | more than 4 years ago | (#32903036)

Yes, it does. The problem is that there's no supporting user community to maintain a fork; almost all of OpenSolaris's updates come from Oracle/Sun.

Re:and alone one dark night (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902626)

Dear Google,
Please rescue Java from Oracle's grasp. Re-brand it as a Google thing, and everyone will love you all the more.
I expect to see http://google.com/java by 2011.

lolwut? (5, Insightful)

wmbetts (1306001) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901464)

So they're trying to force Oracle to give them a liaison by threatening to cut their own throats? Great move I'm sure Oracle will get exactly what they want.

Re:lolwut? (5, Insightful)

valeo.de (1853046) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901596)

It looks like they don't have any real power anyway, so they're basically telling Oracle they will no longer work to Oracle's benefit for free.

Re:lolwut? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901716)

So they're trying to force Oracle to give them a liaison by threatening to cut their own throats?

If your boss stops paying you for the work you do, threatening to 'quit your job' is not cutting your own throat, it's telling that boss to fuck off and they are not getting anything more for free.

Perfectly reasonable position

Re:lolwut? (1)

iammani (1392285) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901864)

Its like threatening to quit if they dont give you a pay rise. Often not a great move, but people do it all the time.

Re:lolwut? (4, Funny)

Brett Buck (811747) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902162)

It's the Judean People's Front crack Suicide Team to the rescue!

Re:lolwut? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902266)

So they're trying to force Oracle to give them a liaison by threatening to cut their own throats? Great move I'm sure Oracle will get exactly what they want.

Since a part of it also involves giving control of the community to Oracle as well, it sounds more to me like they're threatening to cut their own throats, which would result in Oracle, being the sole beneficiary in the will, getting everything they have afterward. And not just implying this; explicitly telling Oracle this beforehand.

I blame Jörg Schilling (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901490)

Is he involved in the negotiations?

Re:I blame Jörg Schilling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902346)

Is he involved in the negotiations?

Yes, he is. While it is easy to blame Schily, I am not sure he deserves to be blamed.

It is obvious (0, Troll)

codepunk (167897) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901494)

Look it is obvious, Oracle is putting a nail in anything having to do with Solaris. Get over it, move on and start migrating.

Re:It is obvious (-1, Troll)

negRo_slim (636783) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901598)

Look it is obvious, Oracle is putting a nail in anything having to do with Solaris. Get over it, move on and start migrating.

And yet if MS was doing the same thing you'd lose your little mind.

Re:It is obvious (0, Troll)

jemtallon (1125407) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901732)

You know who else misrepresented his opponents positions? Hitler. >:)

Re:It is obvious (1)

codepunk (167897) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901876)

MS is completely 100% irrelevant to me I could care less what they do.

Re:It is obvious (1)

tychovi (1221054) | more than 4 years ago | (#32903300)

Actually Microsoft bought Sysinternals hired the developers and made the whole thing better and is still giving it away for free. Those utilities are good enough that I would pay for them and I believe I did donate back before MS acquired them. Oracle on the other hand was saying:

"We've been in the open source business a very long time. We've been a distributor of Apache and we have our own version of Linux," Ellison said. "We have no problems having both Linux and Solaris and we want to make them both better." -- Larry Elison Interview on http://www.serverwatch.com/news/article.php/3861376/Whats-the-Future-of-Linux-and-Solaris-at-Oracle.htm [serverwatch.com]

While the reality is that they're letting OpenSolaris die on the vine...

Re:It is obvious (1)

stakovahflow (1660677) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901724)

Feels like kind of a shame, doesn't it? But I'm still glad I never made the "switch" from FreeBSD/OpenBSD to Solaris/OpenSolaris...

--Stak

Re:It is obvious (2, Interesting)

DesScorp (410532) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902304)

Look it is obvious, Oracle is putting a nail in anything having to do with Solaris. Get over it, move on and start migrating.

No, Oracle is putting a nail in OpenSolaris. They're quite interested in developing commercial Solaris. They just want to be paid for it. You don't make money by not making money. You'd have thought everyone would get that now after the Internet bubble 10 years ago.

Uhhh... (4, Funny)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901514)

Uhhh.. that will show them?

"If you don't give in to our demands...we'll give up & stop existing?"

Re:Uhhh... (5, Insightful)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901708)

No, it seems more like "If you don't appoint 1 person to sit at a table, we'll dump responsibility for the whole thing on your lap... where you still won't have anyone pay attention to it, so we may as well all just cut to the chase and declare OpenSolaris dead."

Re:Uhhh... (4, Interesting)

ak3ldama (554026) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902286)

...so we may as well all just cut to the chase and declare OpenSolaris dead.

This is absolutely what is happening. [cuddletech.com] From that post I linked to:

I once advocated this kind of self-implosion tactic back in the Sun days. The reason was to re-organize the OpenSolaris leadership to be more engaged and industry focused. That was a good idea back in the days when I had faith that Sun would "do the right thing". However, those times have past. Oracle has made it clear that it either controls things or it doesn't... there is no give and take. I don't think we can demolish the structure and believe that Oracle will re-organize in such a way as to give the community more power. It was a long shot with Sun anyway.

However, the most important tidbit he reveals lower in his post:

We're in no worse a position right now than we were during the Sun days. They didn't communicate, we had no visibility or impact on the OpenSolaris distribution, etc. Don't fall into the lie that things are now "worse" than they were... they aren't. Its status quo. The difference is that the OGB is no longer composed of Sun insiders who can get a sense of control from hallway conversations and are now as blind and weak as those of us in the community always have been.

My apologies to Ben Rockwood for raping his blog post of content, but this is /. and no one reads anything linked to apparently.

Re:Uhhh... (1)

Mysticalfruit (533341) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902400)

Oracle had one plan when they bought Sun. Kill it and pump a few extra rounds into it, just to make sure.

If these guys are smart, they should just bang the gavel, stop trying to talk to Oracle, officially fork OpenSolaris. I'm sure Oracle will probably go bat shit lawyer crazy and start yelling it's their property, but since they've given it so little interest... who knows.

Re:Uhhh... (4, Insightful)

rattaroaz (1491445) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902514)

If you follow the discussions, the community around Opensolaris is not enough to maintain a fork. 99.9% of the OS is developed and maintained by Oracle now. It's not like the Linux kernel where numerous people/companies contribute. Legally, you can fork Opensolaris given the CDDL. But maintaining a fork is just not realistic. If it was as popular as Linux, then okay, but that is the problem.

Re:Uhhh... (4, Insightful)

Doc Hopper (59070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902712)

Oracle had one plan when they bought Sun. Kill it and pump a few extra rounds into it, just to make sure.

Nope. Oracle had a major goal when they bought Sun: create a vertically-integrated platform where they control everything from the hardware through the OS, applications, and support contracts. IBM has that sort of leverage with DB2 + Web Services on AIX, along with a killer international sales and support force with its fingers everywhere in the Fortune 500. IBM is really Oracle's main competition and has been for several years because they could offer whole-life-cycle, end-to-end support at a fraction of the cost of Oracle's offerings. The acquisition of Sun allowed Oracle to compete where it was getting hammered.

Accepting reality (5, Insightful)

ThrowAwaySociety (1351793) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901800)

Uhhh.. that will show them?

"If you don't give in to our demands...we'll give up & stop existing?"

It's not like they can really threaten Oracle into submission. Sometimes, you just have to roll over and ask, "Honey, are you really in this for the long run, or are you just screwing me?" If you don't like the answer, you just pack up and leave. No need to go all psycho.

What were we talking about again? Oh yeah. If the organization disbands, Solaris loses some of its credibility as an open platform with a healthy, involved community. Not a death blow, but better than prolonging a charade.

Re:Accepting reality (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902578)

Hmm. Wish I could get my girlfriend into a position where she would have to roll over to ask me that question.

Re:Accepting reality (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902892)

Hmm. Wish I could get my girlfriend into a position where she would have to roll over to ask me that question.

Naked backrubs.

Very sad to witness this (1)

DrunkenPenguin (553473) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901546)

I'm very sad to witness this mess, but I suppose it's just best to accept the fact that Solaris ceased to exist the day Oracle bought Sun. Solaris is and never will be the Solaris we old hackers got to know and love. Maybe it's better to accept it and move on. Still - very sad thing.

Re:Very sad to witness this (1)

C_Kode (102755) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901576)

Solaris isn't dead. Oracle said as much. It's OpenSolaris that has become roadkill via the Oracle purchase of Sun.

Re:Very sad to witness this (1)

DrunkenPenguin (553473) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901720)

I don't believe in Oracle Solaris. Sorry.

Re:Very sad to witness this (1)

Rob Riggs (6418) | more than 4 years ago | (#32903134)

Solaris isn't dead.

It's just pining for the fjords.

Re:Very sad to witness this (1)

DrunkenPenguin (553473) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901654)

Sun has set. It happened the day Oracle bought Sun. I want to personally thank each and every Sun employee who ever got anything to do with the amazing Solaris OS. Thank you. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wEUGF3NGbPg [youtube.com]

Re:Very sad to witness this (1)

hondo77 (324058) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901950)

Solaris is and never will be the Solaris we old hackers got to know and love.

Oh, I don't know. I had to use Solaris a couple of years ago and I felt like I was back in 1992 all over again...

Re:Very sad to witness this (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902258)

I felt like I was back in 1992 all over again...

Ah, 1992. George H. W. Bush vomits into the lap of Prime Minister Kiichi Miyazawa on TV. Riots in Los Angeles. Hurricane Andrew. Windows 3.1 is released.

Good times.

Re:Very sad to witness this (1)

countSudoku() (1047544) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902776)

You must not get near Unix or Linux much then, because they ALL look like that at the command line, even the latest versions not coded in the '90s. Still, good for you for putting down the mouse for two minutes and getting into some REAL computing. As a very long time Solaris Admin (22 years +, kids) I am not surprised at how Oracle completely ignores the open source community in favor of more $$. Look how they are fumbling SPARC, Java, MySQL, and now Open Solaris. In case you're not aware, which is what it seems here, Open Solaris is/was where all the latest crap is/was built. It was a very stable "testbed" for Solaris 11, now it's about to get forked, but anything interesting will never make it back into the main line code for Oracle's Solaris 10 updates. It is sad, but I saw this coming, which is why I'm all about Linux and VMWare now. I've done everything with Solaris I need to do; if you've not used the Zones then you've missed out on a very well designed, free, virtual environment that will become a fond memory now. So, good for Oracle! Go make lots of money with your expensive, proprietary products. I've seen OAS and Oracle DB. I support open source in the enterprise, and I push open source into the enterprise. Solaris bought my house, but Linux/VMWare is going to buy the next one. So long, and thanks for all the fish, Solaris!

Re:Very sad to witness this (2, Informative)

arth1 (260657) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902872)

The road to the perfect OS sure has a lot of big roadkills:

- DEC OSF / Digital Unix / Tru64 - gave us 64-bit and support for more than one CPU type.
- Unicos - gave us NUMA and threading that actually worked.
- IRIX - gave us xfs, OpenGL, mixed 32/64-bit environments and tonnes of new GUI features now found in all OSes.
- NeXT - gave us heartburn, upset stomach, indigestion and envy of those who could actually BUY a system.

and now OpenSolaris goes too, and will undoubtedly drag Solaris with it in the long run.
With HP-UX on life support, HURD being just a wet dream, and BSD evolving as quickly as granite, there's not a lot to choose from anymore, at least not for servers.

Strange, but reasonable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901640)

This makes a good deal of sense. Basically, the OGB doesn't have any power. They are stuck trying to make progress and maintain a platform without any support or guidance from Oracle. Since they don't have any ability to work anymore, they are basically saying, "If you don't give us some power, we might as well quit." This will make their lives easier. It will also mean the blame and responsibility for OpenSolaris' future will lie squarely with Oracle. They won't be able to blame the board, they will have to deal directly with the OpenSolaris community and/or kill the platform.

Really, if Oracle isn't willing to play, there isn't any reason for the OGB to exist anyway.

Why the silence? (1)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901648)

The thing I don't get is Oracle's utter silence on the issue If they're discontinuing Opensolaris (even though they've claimed they aren't twice now), why not just come out and say it? They stopped releasing builds, they aren't interacting with the governing board... you'd think SOMEONE there would realize that saying nothing is WORSE than just pulling the plug. If they are indeed pulling the plug, and came right out and said it from the start, I'm sure they'd find plenty of customer still willing to use Solaris proper. At this point though, going by the mailing lists and customers of mine who run solaris and Opensolaris, they've simply turned many paying and non-paying (but mindshare) customers into bitter people. The type of people who go out of their way as admins to make sure that a company's wares don't exist in the shop in any form if they can be replaced. The stuff they've been doing is the type that causes irreparable damage to their image. At some point they're going to have to figure out that people can very easily move away from an OS... it's not like their database customers that are generally stuck with them because it's so much work to move to something else.

Re:Why the silence? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32901802)

I was a Sun employee and hoped that Oracle management would have more ideas with what to do with the technologies than Sun. But we were told 'margin is king and nothing else matters'. So where is the margin in Open Solaris, MySQL, or most other Sun products that Oracle can cash in with ASAP?? If there is not a high margin then Oracle will kill it.

Of my group of about 25 when Sun was taken over, less than a quarter are left. And the others are looking.

Re:Why the silence? (2, Insightful)

0racle (667029) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901874)

I'm sure they'd find plenty of customer still willing to use Solaris proper

Are they willing to pay for it though? Oracle removed the ability to download and use Solaris 10 for free. This isn't 10 or 15 years ago, Linux and *BSD are more then capable of doing most of the loads you would throw at Solaris an RHEL has the cooperate support and a sane company backing it.

Oracle seems to be looking at Solaris the same as they look at their Database product. Oracle Enterprise Database, even for all its irritations and faults does get the job done very well and does shine against it's competitors, Solaris doesn't have that same position any more. There are many just as good products out there.

Re:Why the silence? (4, Informative)

Doc Hopper (59070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902174)

Oracle removed the ability to download and use Solaris 10 for free.

Thanks for playing. Please try again.

1. Register at sunsolve.sun.com.
2. Click "Downloads & Trials", and select "Top Downloads".
3. Under "Servers & Storage Systems" select "Solaris".
4. Download the option most suited to your needs. For certain releases, you may be asked some survey questions first. If you're not certain you want Solaris full-time on your workstation, I'd suggest going with the VirtualBox image.

The assertion that Oracle no longer allows you to download and use Solaris 10 for free is completely FALSE. I hate seeing this canard repeatedly trotted out as if it were true. There were a couple of days during the support transition and shutdown of legacy Sun data centers when Solaris downloads were affected, but that's been fixed for quite a while now.

Re:Why the silence? (3, Insightful)

CatsupBoy (825578) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902928)

What buttons do I have to click to get my free patches? Oh that's right, they don't supply patches for free anymore.

If you think downloading a base image constitutes as using for free, then I'm afraid you are mistaken. It takes security patches and bug fixes to keep an OS in production quality working order.

Maybe you just re-install every 6 months when the new media set is released? right!

Re:Why the silence? (1)

mandelbr0t (1015855) | more than 4 years ago | (#32903184)

What buttons do I have to click to get my free patches? Oh that's right, they don't supply patches for free anymore.

When did they ever? Yes, Oracle is selling Solaris support. So what? If you need Solaris, then you should be willing to pay for it. If not, Oracle supports Linux as well. The Oracle bashing has gotten to be a bit much. Sun would have been dead one way or another; they're lucky someone with cash decided to trawl through all of it and decide some of it was worth keeping. It's unfortunate to see an open community die like this, but if it can't survive without Oracle, then there probably weren't many people there to begin with.

Re:Why the silence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902946)

You can download it sure, but it's now a 30 day trial.

Re:Why the silence? (1)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902200)

That's FUD. You can still download and run Solaris for free. You only need to pay for it for commercial use.

http://www.ypass.net/blog/2010/04/solaris-licensing-changes-the-real-story [ypass.net]

Linux and *BSD still have nothing to compete with zfs and dtrace. Their competition to crossbow (new networking stack) sucks. And even with SELinux, can't touch the fine grained access controls built into Solaris. But I suppose if you've never used it, it seems like it doesn't do much different.

Re:Why the silence? (1)

starfishsystems (834319) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902650)

I've been involved with Sun since early days, and intensively with Oracle for the past couple of years.

The two cultures couldn't be more different, especially where support is concerned. It's a good litmus test. Sun would stand behind its products. If something wasn't right, all you had to do was say so and someone who knew what he was talking about would go and fix it. I don't mean that the process was perfect, but there was some agility to it. Oracle seems to stand in front of its products. If something isn't right, the default response is that it must be your fault. I don't know if the support staff are trained to play dumb or gradually get worn down by the Oracle culture, but the effect is the same either way. It's a huge distraction to have to educate the people who are supposed to be providing support, especially when their efforts seem to be bent on looking everywhere but at the issue.

So here's the bottom line. Often we're stuck for one reason or another with a particular product line. The difference is that I was happy to buy millions of dollars of Sun product. I loathe the very thought of having an Oracle product on site.

Old Aggie joke (3, Funny)

BenEnglishAtHome (449670) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901730)

An Aggie* comes home to find his wife in bed with another man. He pulls out a pistol and points it at his own head. His wife screams "No, don't do it!" The Aggie replies "Just wait; you're next."

* - Footnote for people not from Texas - Students at Texas Agricultural and Mechanical (A&M) University are called Aggies and are the subject of endless jokes insulting their intelligence.

Re:Old Aggie joke (1)

johnncyber (1478117) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901814)

And as a Red Raider I thank you.

Re:Old Aggie joke (1)

johnncyber (1478117) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901924)

That is I thank you for making my morning.

Re:Old Aggie joke (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902264)

Jokes? I thought those were news reports!

Re:Old Aggie joke (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902782)

Why did the three Aggies go to the Xmas party dressed as firemen?

Because the three wise men came from afar.

(read it out loud, it makes more sense).

What about VirtualBox? (4, Interesting)

yuna49 (905461) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901810)

I don't really care about OpenSolaris, but I have been a happy user of VirtualBox since before it was acquired by Sun. Sun developed some nice, but proprietary, tweaks to VirtualBox in areas like graphics drivers. I do see development continuing as I get prompted to upgrade fairly regularly, but I've been nervous that VirtualBox will also eventually be treated as roadkill by Oracle. Obviously there will always be a free implementation since the "open-source edition" is GPL-licensed.

I can understand Oracle's lack of interest in OpenSolaris since they've supported Linux for a long time now. (Hell, they even compete directly against RedHat with their Oracle Enterprise Linux [wikipedia.org] distribution.) I do wonder, though, whether they'll stay committed to VirtualBox down the road.

Re:What about VirtualBox? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902612)

Oracle Enterprise Linux tracks RedHat Enterprise Linux quite closely. It's more like a CentOS than a separate distribution.

Re:What about VirtualBox? (2, Interesting)

Doc Hopper (59070) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902820)

I do wonder, though, whether they'll stay committed to VirtualBox down the road

I hate to engage in speculation, but Oracle now has two virtualization solutions:

1. Server-side "OVS" or "OVMS": Oracle Virtual Server. This is a Xen-based implementation used widely within Oracle under the framework of their Grid and Elastic Grid products. It's portable, scalable, and is a huge revenue-generator in areas like Oracle Education.

2. VirtualBox, which is more of a client-side, "run it on the desktop" app.

They both have their niches, so I don't see either going away any time soon. OVS is a beast to manage on more than a handful of servers, and paravirtualization (required for good virtualization of Windows) is just now getting rolling onto the "good" side of the usability & performance hump. While Vbox has worked great in that environment.

Speculation: I think we may see some sort of interoperability merge in the future between Vbox & OVS. I am fairly certain there is no development along those lines right now -- Oracle's really busy working on integrating all the web-services & database stuff acquired from Sun, PeopleSoft, and other acquisitions -- but I bet it's on a roadmap somewhere.

It's not just Solaris (1)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901822)

Most proprietary IT companies have started to - if not openly embrace - at least accept and try to work with F/OSS (both in communities and with sponsored products).

Some have been quicker than others; some have taken it more seriously than others. Some have quite obviously put up with F/OSS under protest rather than actively encouraging it.

Oracle, I would say, at least before they acquired Sun, has definitely been in the "not taking entirely seriously" camp. A traditional proprietary vendor, who consider anything free (either speech or beer) to be a toy, something the kiddies can play with and then when they grow up they can start using the Super Enterprise Product. So not only is this not a surprise, I'd say it's almost expected. Frankly, there are projects which I'm far more concerned about - MySQL and OpenOffice immediately spring to mind.

Re:It's not just Solaris (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902130)

Honestly, I wouldn't be too concerned if they killed off MySQL. It might drive webhosts to finally start using PostgreSQL; it's has been a better product for a while now.

Ah Oracle (2, Interesting)

sir lox elroy (735636) | more than 4 years ago | (#32901902)

You have already showed what kind of a BOFH you can be. I was attempting this week to find drivers for some of our Ultra 20s, I can't even download drivers without a stinkin Maint Agreement. This is why I went with MySQL years ago, and not Oracle, hmmm time to change to PostGRES and dump all the Sun equipment.

Re:Ah Oracle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902146)

Welcome to what has always been, and always will be...

It amazes me that people put up with the pitfalls of vendor lock-in. People talk about the up-front troubles of a single vendor, but always fail to consider what would happen if the vendor goes out of business. For most proprietary products - you're just plain screwed.

For F/OSS stuff - you have a fighting chance to figure out what you want to do. May cost you a bit to hire people from time to time, but at the end of the day, you choose, not someone's VP of Sales.

Sad for OpenSolaris (1)

guruevi (827432) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902262)

Especially now that we have a need for Sun's Solaris, they close up shop and sell to Oracle. Sun was far ahead of their game implementing virtualization and extreme storage limits in a time when there was no need for it. Now the industry is finally ready to get started using these technologies and they decide to sell it. Sun's systems were finally starting to get used, systems like the Thumper have been in great demand. Too bad they wasted money on overpriced 1U servers ($10k for an Opteron system?) and projects that were very good but never went anywhere (trying to build on Java's success). Instead of selling the company, they should've cut off 80% of it (including their idiot C-level executives) and concentrated on selling ZFS, Xen and Zones

Today Solaris, tomorrow MySQL? (1, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902502)

The future of MySQL is iffy, too. All Oracle has to do is put the second team on maintaining it, and it will die. A database program has to be very reliable to be usable at all.

We've already seen this with "MySQL Workbench". Since Oracle took over, all the MySQL GUI tools were wrapped into a central "MySQL Workbench" program. Which crashes frequently. (If you can install it at all. [mysql.com] ) If Oracle can bring MySQL down to the level of MySQL Workbench, nobody will be able to use it.

MySQL needs to be fully archived, including the revision history, outside of Oracle, just in case.

Re:Today Solaris, tomorrow MySQL? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902838)

On RHEL it's a disaster- it crashes so much its useless. The MySQL Administrator tool is the only good way without a CLI to make a backup/do much administration.

this doesn't make sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32902684)

why do they buy sun and let everything rot? was sun such a threat to oracle? or is oracle just retarded?

It's not sad, it's normal (1)

VincenzoRomano (881055) | more than 4 years ago | (#32902932)

When you have enough money, you rule. That's it.
Want to kill an open ource project? Buy the "supporting" company (if any, like MySQL AB) or buy^H^H^Hhire the top 5 or 10 developers.
Is the control of the project already in your hands? Simply forget about it.
Then sue all forks.
It's (sadly) normal.
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