Rebutting some anti-OpenSolaris FUD
I really have to respond to this piece of uninformed claptrap. It is almost 100% pure FUD. Frankly, I can think of only one reason why extreme Linux zealots like Maureen O'Gara write stuff like this: they are scared shitless of the competition Linux is facing with OpenSolaris. Deep down, they know they can't win on technical arguments, so they resort to spreading as much FUD as possible.
I'll quote sections of the article, and then respond with the facts.
This time through, people are pretty convinced Sun "doesn't get" open source - or doesn't want to. Murmuring is heard about Sun's stated intent to cherry pick any community changes made in the name of "OpenSolaris" and put them in a Sun-blessed, Sun-tested, Sun-supported, Sun-distributed Solaris "subset."
How can Sun cherry pick a source base that is open? It is true that Sun will continue to release its own branded version of Solaris, in much the same way that StarOffice is the Sun-branded version of OpenOffice. But if anything, the Sun-branded Solaris will be a superset of OpenSolaris, including those bits that can't be opened because the IP holder didn't grant Sun the rights to open the code. Again, this is no different to StarOffice and OpenOffice.
Sun has yet to post the OpenSolaris code though it was promised weeks ago. And it's not going to be Solaris 10. It's going to be Solaris 10.1, widgetry Sun has code named Nevada. How they differ is unclear.
Ummm, Sun promised no such thing. They have committed to releasing the code in Q2 this year; by my reckoning they have nearly 3 months left, given that Q2 started 8 days ago. And the reason why it won't be the source code to Solaris 10 is quite simple: the code that is released is based on the current version under development. The code that makes up Solaris 10 FCS is about 4 months old now. As for the comment about how they differ being unclear: perhaps if Maureen did just a little research, she could read the What's New notes on the Solaris Express page or read one of several blogs detailing the changes.
The stuff is now due out by the end of the quarter under Sun's new Open Source Initiative-approved royalty-free Common Development and Distribution License (CDDL), a variant of the Mozilla License that forbids putting Solaris code in Linux or connecting it to any GPL code to avoid having to put proprietary IP in the public domain.
Sigh. I thought this one was addressed months ago: the CDDL is not incompatible with the GPL; it is the GPL that is incompatible with the CDDL. It is perfectly permissible to link code under license with CDDL code, provided the license of the other code allows it. GPL code can only be linked to other GPL code; it is the GPL that is inflexible and restricts developers' choices, not the CDDL. Oh, and releasing IP under the GPL does not place it into the public domain. Something in the public domain has no copyright and can be used as one sees fit. The GPL has some very explicit provisions copyrights and what one may do with the code.
Within hours of its CAB announcement, Sun president and COO Jonathan Schwartz, Scott McNeil's stand-in as Peck's Bad Boy, slammed the GPL as predatory economic imperialism while keynoting the Open Source Business Conference and said Sun would remain aloof from it.
Who's "Scott McNeil"? I presume Maureen means Scott McNealy, Sun's CEO. And it would be hard for Sun to remain aloof from the GPL, given that is the license used by OpenOffice...
Sun also stuck two of its own people on the CAB: chief technology evangelist Simon Phipps and senior staff engineer Casper Dik. Hmmm, Phipps.
Not sure what Maureen means by these thinly disguised attacks. Both Casper and Simon are respected, consumate professionals, as are the rest of the CAB. (In the interests of full disclosure, I should point out that I am a member of the CAB.)
The bottom line is this: we in the Solaris community encourage and enjoy healthy competition. Competition fosters innovation, and that's what it's really all about. If hard-line Linux zealots like Maureen put their energies into making Linux a better product rather than indulging in pointless FUD spreading, their OS of choice might have a better chance of keeping up...