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News: Red Hat Plans Open Source Java

  1. Red Hat Plans Open Source Java (30 messages)

    Red Hat is in discussions with Sun about launching an open source version of the Java platform.

    Redhat's CEO, Matthew Szulik, has said that have been working for five years on open source versions of Java technologies such as Just In Time compilers and Java Virtual Machines in a clean room environment, and has requested the sponsorship of Sun to go ahead with the full-scale project.

    "There's always been an interest in an open source implementation of Java developed in a clean room that adheres to the Java standards," Szulik told ComputerWire. "We're in discussions with Sun. We'd like to do this with their support."

    Sun hasn't been big into this idea in the past, but may see this as a competitive move against .NET. Szulik claims that the talks are at a "very serious stage".

    Read: Red Hat Plans Open Source Java

    What do you think this mean for Java? and Linux?

    Threaded Messages (30)

  2. It's about time![ Go to top ]

    Sun has been amazingly stupid about not leveraging the Open Source/ Linux community. If you install RedHat and are a PHP, Perl, C, Python, C++ or Tcl developer, you have everything you need out of the box. If you're a Java developer, you have to spend a few hours downloading and installing all of your tools.

    No wonder the Apache, MySQL, Perl combo is used so much by developers that come from Linux backgrounds. Those would all be Java developers if Sun had been making sure the JVM was shipping with Linux distros all this time. Even more would have flocked if there was a reference JVM that was Open Source.

    Sun needs hordes of developers that are familiar with Java to win against .Net. It needs college kids and hobbyists to play with Sun on the side, the same way everyone used to do with MS software in the early 90's.

    Instead, Sun has given itself a black eye in the Open Source community by putting it's big toe in the water, then pulling out every now and then. Why won't Sun realize that it's traditional Unix community has embraced Linux, even if they still use proprietary Unix boxes for heavy lifting.

    Between Sun's reluctance to take the path of least resistence to acheive higher market penetration with Java, and it's seeming inability to market SunONE software (how many people really know Sun makes a mail server?) Sun is quickly becoming in danger of winding up like SGI. IBM is more of a threat to Sun than Microsoft is. IBM has a lot more good will in the Open Source community although Open Office is probably a more important contribution than Eclipse. Sun needs allies these days.

    IBM is walking into deals with hardware, software, service and support all from IBM. They're giving software licenses away to win the hardware, service and support part. What Sun VAR can compete with that? A Sun VAR would have a hard time trying to give away the Oracle licenses or the SunONE App Server license in a deal.

    So what is Sun going to do to stop from becoming the next SGI? I love Sun tech and would like to see it stick around, but Sun needs to figure out a plan.
  3. It's about time![ Go to top ]

    I couldn't agree more. PHP, Perl, MySQL, and Postgres work out of the box on most Linux distributions. I'd love it if Java had a similar out of the box environment.

    Fortunately, Open Source Java is well on it's way to being complete. It's already possible to use Eclipse ans SWT in a completely open source environment (see http://klomp.org/mark/gij_eclipse/). The key thing missing from GNU Classpath and GCJ is a complete version of the AWT and Swing. SWT is starting to fill that gap, but it would be a lot better for all concerned if SWT won the open source Java GUI toolkit on it's own merits, not just because it was the only free one available. It would also be a shame if Mono became the default choice for open source "Java-like language" development simply because it had developed a richer open source environment.

    If Sun were to dual-license AWT and Swing under the current license and the GPL, it could have the best of both worlds. A complete version of Java could be bundled in all distributions, more open source apps/tools/libs would be developed, and Sun could still get money from Java licensing fees (since proprietary applications couldn't link to a GPLed library).

    It's a no-lose situation for Sun.
  4. Here's a list of what's working[ Go to top ]

    Here's a list of which apps currently work with an open sourced Java called Kaffe using GNU Classpath:
    http://www.kaffe.org/compatibility_applications.shtml

    Eclipse doesn't work with Kaffe, but it does work with GCJ, as well as several other apps:
    http://sources.redhat.com/rhug/

    Work is currently being done to merge GNU Classpath and GCJ.
  5. Go redhat[ Go to top ]

    About time that something likes this happens.
  6. Correct this..[ Go to top ]

    Actually it is no longer a pipe dream..




    http://sources.redhat.com/mauve/faq.html

    I do not see Red hAt dropping Mauve or GNU ClassPAth GNU COMpiler for Java or Kaffe in exchange for Sun's close dmind approach..

    More likely we will see Re dhat pay for GNU ClasspAth's licnese fee to SUN..the compatibility license fee that is..

    Red Hat already has a clean test suite to test the java compliance..which is why SUN may be talking to red hat at this time..
  7. SUN is not selling any hardware - IBM, Dell, HP crushed it completely.
    Solaris sells are record low thanks to linux and the economy.
    It MAY have in future thought of making something out of java.
    With this will that chance be gone too ???
  8. Sean: SUN is not selling any hardware - IBM, Dell, HP crushed it completely.

    Hmm. Very interesting. Where do you get your assertion from? I'm just curious. I'm obliged to agree that Sun's hardware is generally (a) slower and (b) more expensive than Dell and HP on the low-end, however it's very competitive in the mid-range and scales much higher. It's a lot cheaper than IBM ... but I don't know if you have ever had the privilege of pricing high-end IBM kit. (You would be surprised how many WebSphere installations run on Sun hardware, for example, because the companies cannot afford IBM hardware but are standardized on IBM software ;-)

    Peace,

    Cameron Purdy
    Tangosol, Inc.
    Coherence: Easily share live data across a cluster!
  9. 1. Sun is still in server market but its share has gone dwon drastically - all becoz of competitive IBM, HP , DELL servers. Based on wired.com, most of the companies when think of buying new software go to OBM or HP or DELL first before coming to sun.

    2. making java open soyurce means creating hell lot of new versions / variations / flavors of java. this is nothing but confusion. Forgte abt compile once , run everywhere. It wil be compile every damn place before u run. Lets stick to Sun's java , than to have tom's java, dick's java and harry's java.

    3. Stupid claims of .Net taking over java becoz of this - i dont think so. .Net is no competition to java. please be realistic. Java is here to stay no matter what. and this open source java or not cannot be related to MSFT taking over java, blah blah blah.
  10. About Sun selling more/less then IBM, HP and Dell.
    I don't know where the original poster got it from, but it might be from the same place I read it.
    See http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=10141 for a comparison of hardware sells.
    They have a nice little graph as well, which says this:
    HP: 31% Other: 28% Dell: 20% IBM: 14% Sun: 7%
    Those are the percentages for the servers shipped in 2002.
    I was quite surprised as well, I actually thought it was the other way around (i.e. Sun > IBM > Dell > HP and 'other' somewhere between).

    Ludootje
  11. Ok,
    So the alternative is to do nothing and waiting for the Mon$ster to push their .net stuff, they'll integrate it into all their products and protocols (creating a defacto standard) forcing anyone who develop to do it their way and kill off all competition. Remember, they want it all, the only way to stay in the business is to get employed by them (at their terms). Yeah! Great idea!
  12. Death to Java if Microsoft gets hold of Open Source Java. By SUN holding on to Java the prevent others from creating various strains of Java. Just as the Microsoft Lawsuit which caused Microsoft to stop using Java technology showed. Microsoft will take it, change it to suit them, riun Java for everyone else.

    Here are some comments from James Gosling regarding open Source Java.

     "If I talk to the lawyers involved in the Microsoft case, I always come back completely horrified, [thinking] if we ever do this, we're screwed."

    http://www.computerworld.com/developmenttopics/development/java/story/0,10801,82109,00.html

    I think distribution with RedHat would be terrific, but OpenSourcing Java would be it's demise. Just my opinion.

    SD
  13. There is exactly zero evidence such a thing is probably or even possible. The "various strains" argument is a smoke screen. In case you didn't notice, Microsoft already took Java, changed it to suit them and called it C#. Did that ruin Java for everyone else?

    I'd be interested if someone could come up with some other argument as to how a completely open source implementation of Java would cause harm to the community. As a matter of fact, I think the lack of an open source implementation of Java along with projects like Mono beginning to mature will draw developers who might otherwise use Java away from it.
  14. What would the benefits be? There are already commities which work with SUN to plan future versions,etc.

    I am looking for explainations not arguments. If it would be better for Java as a whole, I'm all for it. I just have concerns that as a developer I then have to choose a specific version of Java to work with, Every major player will release their own spin on it, we will have IBM Java, SUN Java, BEA Java, Microsoft Java, RedHat Java, the list goes on and on. Also, I don't care how silly you think it is, Microsoft becomes a threat if it becomes Open Source.

    Would the Core be Standard and then there be distributions like Linux? Maybe I just don't get it. Enlighten me!

    SD
  15. You do realize that right now you have Sun Java, IBM Java (IBM's JDK and Jikes), BEA Java (JRocket), Blackdown Java, Microsoft Java (J++), Apple Java and many other implementations specifically designed for a particular device (like the versions on my Sharp Zaurus pda and my Nokia 3650 cell phone). Is this causing the downfall of Java? And why shouldn't different versions of the JVM meeting different requirements be encouraged? As long as they are all compatible with the Java standard your app will run on it just fine. It won't matter to you if it's open source, closed source, written by Sun, IBM, Microsoft, Red Hat or some group of open source developers that you've never heard of before. That is the beauty of a standard.

    And again, I have seen no evidence and no good reasons why Microsoft would be any more or less a threat if there was an open source Java implementation. It seems to me that they were able to fork Java without much difficulty already. Is there any other language out there that doesn't have an open source implementation?
  16. "As long as they are all compatible with the Java standard your app will run on it just fine."

    I think this is a key issue that SUN is trying to work out regarding making Java Open Source. They want to maintain control over Java!

    It is almost open source now.
      -The source code is available.
      -Numerous companies outside SUN work on the specification and future versions.

    What would change aside from Licensing cost?

    SD
  17. I don't think anyone is suggesting that really visible changes occur, even to the licensing costs. The issue is simply that the open source community is interested in a complient, certified open source implementation of Java. The JCP would stay the same, Sun doesn't need to give up control over Java. But, will Sun let this happen?
  18. ...throw me an e-mail, willya, mr Namesake? :-)

    My address is crXXX@saunalahti.ZZ , where "XXX" is our shared surname and "ZZ" is the country code for FInland, where I live... Sorry 'bout the mangling, not sure how much spam I'd get without it.

    Hopefully yours,
      Christian R. Conrad
  19. Red Hat Plans Open Source Java[ Go to top ]


    > And again, I have seen no evidence and no good reasons why Microsoft would be >any more or less a threat if there was an open source Java implementation. It >seems to me that they were able to fork Java without much difficulty already. >Is there any other language out there that doesn't have an open source >implementation?

    They DID it already, but they had to step back because Sun had the control of Java.
     If you follow the emaild for the Java trial, you will see that MS's intention was exactly that, split Java.

     Maybe now MS will not longer try that... but.
  20. Red Hat and Java[ Go to top ]

    I don't see any reason why SUN should open source java. It would be one of
    the worst thing to do since M$ will kill it with FUD and strains.

    Open source doesn't have the teeth to fight M$ FUD. Case in point SCO/IBM spat
    and many more.

    Take a look at JBOSS, what a mess it is. Open source is not the panacea for all
    problems !!!!!!!!
  21. Red Hat and Java[ Go to top ]

    As if Microsoft doesn't already attack Java with FUD (petstore) and strains (C#). Is there anything new that Microsoft would be able to do if there was an open source implementation?
  22. Java Open Source[ Go to top ]

    And you can see how many Java developers are getting onto C# bandwagon ?

    C# is a different lang but creating a split to java would be really
    hazardous. IMHO.....
  23. Sun sucks![ Go to top ]

    I think Sun is not aware of the fact that the current success of the Java platform is largely due to the open source community who created great software.
    Without community support Java sucks! Now Sun must know that if it keep creating nonsense barriers over the open source community M$ will certainly invade server market as it did client one.IBM realized this fact and support OS not because it loves OS folks but because it is economically wise to do so.What Sun should do right now is to focus on creating high quality software to compete with its competitors instead disturbing OS momentum
  24. Open Source Java?[ Go to top ]

    I agree that opensourcing Java would lead to numerous Java incompatible clones. There are enough problems with different *official* Java versions, but this is life. I have no problem with letting Sun to do the developement and maintenance for us. I would only suggest to release JDK under a licence that would allow to ship it with Linux distributions and "similar" software (like browsers).

    It would be nice to have Java more modular (JDK 1.4.1 = 40MB) with much less C-based code, which doesn't make porting JVM easy etc. But that's another story...
  25. let's stay with sun's JVM[ Go to top ]

    I believe one version of JVM would help java devleper much better. what is the point of an open source JVM? create more compatible issues so that java can be killed?

    Just ask Sun's permission to ship JVM on LINUX for free.
  26. let's stay with sun's JVM[ Go to top ]

    I believe one version of JVM would help java devleper much better. what is the

    > point of an open source JVM? create more compatible issues so that java can be
    > killed?
    >

    Open source has a pretty good record when it comes to standards compatibility. For instance, TCP/IP is open source, yet most TCP/IP implementations are compatibile. Mozilla is far more standards compliant than Internet Explorer, the current version of GCC supports the complete C++ standard (few commercial C++ compilers do) and so on. Once a standards based open source project reaches maturity, on the whole, it doesn't try to break the standard. Instead, it tends to focus on:
    * improving performance
    * modularlizing components so they can be used in other projects (e.g. we have LibPerl for embedding Perl in C+ programs, JBoss has modularized their EJBs so you can use a subset if you don't require a full implementation)
    * adding optional plugins/add-ons/libraries

    >
    > Just ask Sun's permission to ship JVM on LINUX for free.
    >
    Even with Sun's permission, the JVM wouldn't make it into most base Linux distributions since it's not open source. Linux distributions only tend to support software that they can directly fix bugs on. It's one reason why you don't get into the "cross-vendor blame game" when you use open source. When some application doesn't work, it's the distribution's fault and either it, or your support company (e.g. IBM Global Services) is responsible for fixing it. There's not passing the buck.

    If Java remains and add-on while purely open sourced Mono gets into the main distribution, the playing field will not be level. Perl, PHP, and Python already have an unfair advantage over Java because their already part of all Linux distributions and are already integrated and set up. Many LAMP (i.e. Linux+Apache+MySQL+(Perl or PHP)) systems might migrate to LAMM (Linux+Apache+MySQL+Mono) simply because it has ASP.NET has many of the advantages of JSP and is already integrated into Linux distributions. I'd much rather have LAMP systems migrate to LAMJ (Linux+Apache+MySQL+Java). Having Java part of most distributions would also allow open source projects like OpenOffice, Apache Tomcat, and Mozilla prepackage their own JVM so that they "just work without configuration" when you install them.


    Besides, Open Source Java is happening, whether Sun likes it or not. You can already run Tomcat, Eclipse, and several other Java apps on the purely open source Kaffe or GCJ JVMs plus libraries. There are stills some compatibility and completeness issues, mostly dealing with the AWT and Swing libraries. SWT fills this niche nicely. If Sun doesn't give it's blessing, the SWT may begin to overtake Swing/AWT, not because it's better, but simply because will be available on all Linux distributions. If that happens for one major library, why not others? By not giving it's blessing, Sun may actually cause a split in the Java platform.

    Ironically, the more Sun gives support, the more control it will maintain.

    * if it doesn't give support, it may lead to a split where sone loses control (most likely to IBM or RedHat)

    * if it certifies the Open Source Java, it will make sure that it doesn't have compatibility issues, but it makes it easy for Apache and Linux distributions to package "the Apache commons library", SWT, and other useful libraries, with their Java so they are just as convenient to use as SUN's. As a result, they will be used more often over SUN's when they are superior. The JVM will also be different and may be extended to allow other VMs like Perl/Python/Ruby, or Mono, to interoperate.

    * if it licenses it's version of Java under the GPL so open source apps could like to their version of Java while closed source apps would have to follow Sun's licensing rules (TrollTech successfully uses this approach to license Qt, the toolkit for KDE), SUN could completely control the open source Java distribution (like they do OpenOffice) and most other open source implementations would fall out of favour.
  27. Re: let's stay with sun's JVM[ Go to top ]

    I believe one version of JVM would help java devleper much better. what is the

    > > point of an open source JVM? create more compatible issues so that java can be
    > > killed?
    > >
    >
    > Open source has a pretty good record when it comes to standards compatibility. For instance, TCP/IP is open source, yet most TCP/IP implementations are compatibile. Mozilla is far more standards compliant than Internet Explorer, the current version of GCC supports the complete C++ standard (few commercial C++ compilers do) and so on. Once a standards based open source project reaches maturity, on the whole, it doesn't try to break the standard. Instead, it tends to focus on:
    > * improving performance
    > * modularlizing components so they can be used in other projects (e.g. we have LibPerl for embedding Perl in C+ programs, JBoss has modularized their EJBs so you can use a subset if you don't require a full implementation)
    > * adding optional plugins/add-ons/libraries
    >

    Here, here! Open Source has always been a strong adherent to standards. Even the unsanctioned Open Source Java attempts (GCC, Classpath, numerous others) have always had the goal of being compatible with the Sun JVM and Java specs.

    Of course there will be experimentation, but that will be marked as such and anything that works will be submitted as a spec to whoever controls the spec. Look at LDAP. The maintainer of OpenLDAP has contributted most of the newer RFCs around LDAP. They got the basic specs implemented and started to improve it. The improvements were submitted as new specs.

    If there is an Open Source Java, it will always be compatible, and on top of it, it will contribute to the whole Java community.

    > >
    > > Just ask Sun's permission to ship JVM on LINUX for free.
    > >
    > Even with Sun's permission, the JVM wouldn't make it into most base Linux distributions since it's not open source. Linux distributions only tend to support software that they can directly fix bugs on. It's one reason why you don't get into the "cross-vendor blame game" when you use open source. When some application doesn't work, it's the distribution's fault and either it, or your support company (e.g. IBM Global Services) is responsible for fixing it. There's not passing the buck.

    It won't be in the core Debian distro until it is under an Open Source license. RedHat will ship it because there is a clear business case for them. An Open Source Java would have the "massive-peer review" benefit, which is why popular Open Source projects seem to be able to achieve production level quality so quickly.
    >
    > If Java remains and add-on while purely open sourced Mono gets into the main distribution, the playing field will not be level. Perl, PHP, and Python already have an unfair advantage over Java because their already part of all Linux distributions and are already integrated and set up. Many LAMP (i.e. Linux+Apache+MySQL+(Perl or PHP)) systems might migrate to LAMM (Linux+Apache+MySQL+Mono) simply because it has ASP.NET has many of the advantages of JSP and is already integrated into Linux distributions. I'd much rather have LAMP systems migrate to LAMJ (Linux+Apache+MySQL+Java). Having Java part of most distributions would also allow open source projects like OpenOffice, Apache Tomcat, and Mozilla prepackage their own JVM so that they "just work without configuration" when you install them.
    >

    This is a far bigger threat to Sun than whatever devious plans MS has. Developers will have some level of compatibility with there proprietary counterparts and will be able to use the knowledge of all there .NET using friends. If the .NET developers reach critical mass, at best Java developers will be seen in the same regard as C++ developers, at worst COBOL developers.

    >
    > Besides, Open Source Java is happening, whether Sun likes it or not. You can already run Tomcat, Eclipse, and several other Java apps on the purely open source Kaffe or GCJ JVMs plus libraries. There are stills some compatibility and completeness issues, mostly dealing with the AWT and Swing libraries. SWT fills this niche nicely. If Sun doesn't give it's blessing, the SWT may begin to overtake Swing/AWT, not because it's better, but simply because will be available on all Linux distributions. If that happens for one major library, why not others? By not giving it's blessing, Sun may actually cause a split in the Java platform.
    >
    > Ironically, the more Sun gives support, the more control it will maintain.
    >
    > * if it doesn't give support, it may lead to a split where sone loses control (most likely to IBM or RedHat)
    >
    > * if it certifies the Open Source Java, it will make sure that it doesn't have compatibility issues, but it makes it easy for Apache and Linux distributions to package "the Apache commons library", SWT, and other useful libraries, with their Java so they are just as convenient to use as SUN's. As a result, they will be used more often over SUN's when they are superior. The JVM will also be different and may be extended to allow other VMs like Perl/Python/Ruby, or Mono, to interoperate.
    >
    > * if it licenses it's version of Java under the GPL so open source apps could like to their version of Java while closed source apps would have to follow Sun's licensing rules (TrollTech successfully uses this approach to license Qt, the toolkit for KDE), SUN could completely control the open source Java distribution (like they do OpenOffice) and most other open source implementations would fall out of favour.

    Bingo, Open Sourcing something does not have he simplistic consequences that either MS or Sun would have you believe. Especially when it's infrastructure tech. Infrastructure tech is consider holy when it comes to making changes that might cause incompatibility. Look at JBoss, they implemented the J2EE spec then started looking at ways to integrate things like AOP. They want and their users want compatibility first, then performance options and flexibility.

    Sun's best ally is the Open Source community. They will attack anyone who will try and split the standard or who plays games to make things incompatible. Look at the bile seethed forth whenever IE's standards complience is brought up. Look at how well Mozilla adheres to standards in comparison. Examples of the Open Source community pushing Open Standards is long. Examples of splits that have created incompatibilities are short and most have been forgotten and abandoned.

    If you look at the history of the community and the opinions of those that actually develop Open Source, then you will see that Open Sourcing Java would be a good move for Sun. The Open Source community has fought to help make sure that MS doesn't dominate the HTTP or other web protocols, it will do the same for a language like Java.
  28. Open Source Java[ Go to top ]

    I don't see Linux making any dent in enterprise market with Php/MySql. LAMP
    is for people without money or have too much time.

    Sun will have Java as part of std dist on windoze. If HP/Dell can ship
    who cares abt RedHad/SCO/Suse. They are minows in enterprise/consumer market and
    it will take a couple of decades before LINUX can be reckoned in consumer/enterprise market like Win2K/Solaris is...... Timeline will vary if Linux starts stealing from IBM/SCO/Sun to build functionality but thats
    another topic.

    Linux+Java will happen irrespective of Php/MySql advances as long as Linux makes
    progress in enterprise space.
  29. Open Source Java[ Go to top ]

    I don't see Linux making any dent in enterprise market with Php/MySql. LAMP

    > is for people without money or have too much time.

    No one ever thought anyone would consider Windows as an enterprise OS. The idea of MS being in large data centers was funny a couple of years ago. Besides, it could it PHP/Oracle or PHP/DB2. Don't underestimate the effects of popular technologies. My point is that the professional pressure of .NET and the popular pressure of LAMP and the like could make Java a niche technology, or one with little to no growth.
      
    >
    > Sun will have Java as part of std dist on windoze. If HP/Dell can ship
    > who cares abt RedHad/SCO/Suse. They are minows in enterprise/consumer market and
    > it will take a couple of decades before LINUX can be reckoned in consumer/enterprise market like Win2K/Solaris is...... Timeline will vary if Linux starts stealing from IBM/SCO/Sun to build functionality but thats
    > another topic.

    I'm not sure what industry info you are reading, but IBM and Dell are selling a lot of Linux installations. Linux doesn't need anything from SCO. This has got to be a troll. IBM will be migrating the same scalability capabilities into Linux that AIX and OS/390 has. Sun will have just as hard a time competing with IBM and Linux as it does with MS. BTW, I've actually met some of the people who are working on making Linux the most scalable Unix around, they come from the companies that made the proprietary Unix's scalable. They don't need to steal anything, they've got designs they already want to play with that will beat what they did for the proprietary Unix's. It's more a matter of 5 years till Linux solutions are readily available from numerous vendors that can scale as much as Solaris.
    >
    > Linux+Java will happen irrespective of Php/MySql advances as long as Linux makes
    > progress in enterprise space.

    But will it be a no growth niche market? Will we all have to go work on .NET or Perl rather than our beloved Java? I like Java because it's a better solution, it makes way more sense in it's specs. I don't want to have to use inferior technology to pay the bills.
  30. Red Hat Plans Open Source Java[ Go to top ]

    Maybe Sun should follow the Linus Torvalds model for product ownership?
  31. Mono and ikvm.net's java support is getting pretty good now - it uses GNU classpath like GCJ does, but sticks to a java/C# style model of JITing rather than the native code approach of GCJ

    See: http://www.go-mono.com/ and http://www.nexus.hu/vargaz