Has The License for OpenSolaris Changed with the Change to Solaris 10?

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News: Has The License for OpenSolaris Changed with the Change to Solaris 10?

  1. This week, a rumour appeared that indicated that OpenSolaris was no longer open. However, it seems that this story was the result of some confusion around new terms of another Sun product, and while many are worried about how long OpenSolaris really will be open, the current concerns seem a bit unfounded.

     

    Also, this week Apple chimed-in on its open development platform strategy. Apple released a beta of the iPhone OS 4 SDK, including a new license agreement that bans Flash, but also may ban Appcelerator Titanium and other cross-platform development tools.

     

    A good write-up on Apple's new terms is at http://daringfireball.net/2010/04/iphone_agreement_bans_flash_compiler.

     

    These titan's of industry may have forgotten a basic principal of the Internet: Censorship is viewed as a network failure and the Net routes around it. And, a principal of Open Source Software (OSS): Software needs to be free.

     

    -Frank Cohen

    http://www.pushtotest.com


    Threaded Messages (17)

  2. Interesting Perspective[ Go to top ]

    A very interesting post, Frank. I hope you don't mind the liberties I took with the title. :)

    I do hope the people behind the reigns of power appreciate the kind of backlash that would happen if they went back on their promises of a world of open Java. I do hope this is an aberration, and not a pattern of behavior to come.
  3. Interesting Perspective[ Go to top ]

    A very interesting post, Frank. I hope you don't mind the liberties I took with the title. :)
    I do hope the people behind the reigns of power appreciate the kind of backlash that would happen if they went back on their promises of a world of open Java. I do hope this is an aberration, and not a pattern of behavior to come.

    Yeeks, *I* minded what you did with the title. It didn't tell me anything. :/

    Anyway, part of the core of the story is unclear - any links? I have been unable to find anything validating the statement, including live support channels for opensolaris, and I've been able to find content online that says that future development on opensolaris is assured, with participation by oracle.

    That doesn't mean that the "doom and gloom" will NOT happen, but there's no indication that I've been able to find that it WILL.

    In fact, I quote from the annual meeting:

    +[12:09] <DanR> Oracle will continue to make OpenSolaris available as open source, and Oracle will continue to actively support and participate in the community
    +[12:09] <DanR> Oracle is investing more in Solaris than Sun did prior to the acquisition, and will continue to contribute technologies to OpenSolaris, as Oracle already does for many other open source projects

    ...
    +[12:16] <DanR> The patch decision is aligned with how Oracle does business in other areas as well, patches are delivered for customers but not for free. So it's consistent, that doesn't define a platform future at all. x86 is the core of our Storage appliances for example, we're not going away from it at all. Though clearly we make more money on SPARC so there is more of an emphasis given the customer base.

    Here's the thing. The patch policy was NEVER free. There are free patches available but from what I've been able to tell... there's no news here, folks, carry on.

    The problem, of course, is slashdot, which posted "Solaris no longer free as in beer." It suggests that OpenSolaris will die because, after all, MySQL died. (Or will die.)

    It's all conjecture and handwringing. Oracle should probably write up a clarification that puts it all in simple terms, formally - instead of relying on logs from IRC, even if that was the official meeting - but I've been able to find nothing substantiating the position outlined here.

    Boring captcha this time: "goodhue in."
  4. Oracle has three interconnected things: OpenSolaris source code, OpenSolaris binary distribution, and Solaris. Pull the string on one and the others change too.


    OpenSolaris source code (most of it) is licensed under the CDDL open-source-like license. OpenSolaris binary distribution is still free but is distributed under a commercial license. Solaris is now trialware for 90 days and then requires a purchase.


    Dan Roberts of Oracle quelled rumors that OpenSolaris would die by telling the OpenSolaris Annual Meeting (a chat session) everything will remain the same: "Oracle will continue to develop technologies in the open, as we do today".


    I am ok with a commercial company wanting to make profits from the use of open source code. My problem is in the reliability of the company. I measure reliability by looking at the communication to the community and matching that to the release cycles of the product. 


    In Oracle's case they appear to be still learning what they bought. It was probably expedient to change the Solaris license to trialware. But, it shows a lack of understanding on how that impacts the open source project.


    The original title I wrote was: "The Open World Gets A Little Darker". It used to be easy to follow McNealy's rants against Microsoft's monopolistic behavior in the 1990s-2000s. I am aghast at what is happening now: Apple is acting like Microsoft and Oracle is not using the community (including TSS) to make informed and intelligent decisions.


    -Frank


  5. OpenSolaris/Solaris[ Go to top ]

    My understanding is that the 90 trial has been applied to Solaris, not to OpenSolaris. Has there been some confusion here, or has this changed been applied to OpenSolaris as well? The OpenSolaris release was in 2009. The 2010.3 release is still pending. What installer is being referred to here?
  6. It seems what Shane has pointed out is correct. The quick review of opensolaris.org revels no such change. It must be Solaris and not OpenSolaris.


  7. OpenSolaris is still free[ Go to top ]

    As of day I write it, nothing has changed in OpenSolaris Licensing, neither quietly nor verbously. It is still free to download and use. What has changed, however, is licensing of Solaris 10.
  8. So, it seems there is alot of confusing right now about this particular topic. Many people and sites are reporting the same thing that Frank has stated, but a little research is making it very hard to confirm the assertion. I'm not sure right now if this is something that has happened, is about to happen, or something that will never happen. I do hope the latter is true. But until we can get some really solid evidence from Sun or Oracle that indeed there has been a change in the license for OpenSolaris, we may have to conclude that indeed, OpenSolaris is still open.

    I do apologize for not doing more due diligence in confirming this story before posting it to the front page. I will continue to look into this story and post back what I find.
  9. Sad[ Go to top ]

    This is what makes TSS so sad.

    A story is released over a week ago by some half wit at ZDNet claiming that OpenSolaris is 90 trialware and is debunked the same day.

    Where have the TSS editors been the past week? Did anyone bother to read past the first paragraph of that article or of any of the other clones, the comments, or bother to do any actual research?

    Frank still claims that OpenSolaris is trialware, but it is not. I say that since the text in this post still reads, "The new terms change OpenSolaris distribution to a trialware agreement.".

    Unless you have evidence, don't make claims like this.

    As I asked before, which installer did you use that you saw this?

    To me this looks like a pathetic attempt to get in the headlines.
  10. Sad[ Go to top ]

    This is what makes TSS so sad.
    If you don't like it then gtfo of here. You people keep bitching when there are no headlines, then you keep bitching when there are headlines.

    If they made mistake they will apologize and its all cool. No need to be drama queen like 'it's saaaad', 'it's pathetiiic'.


  11. So, I guess I'm where the buck stops on this one.

    Where have the editors been the last week? That's a very 'cutting' comment. :(

    I actually took over the job on Monday, and have been working hard to take control of what's going on here, which isn't an insignificant task. I think we've had some good headlines this week, and hopefully some good debate and comments. It's a good start.

    As for the post, well, please accept this mea culpa:

    I put the post up around 2am EST last night, hoping to have some headlines for people in North America for the morning (I do appreciate that this is an i18n site of course). As soon as I checked the site this morning, there was clarification from the community that this never should have been posted. I actually removed the headline immediately, and was completely embarrassed by it, but a past editor suggested that I should keep it up, as the replies clarified the fear, uncertainty and doubt that had been surrounding this rumor for the week. I think that was a good call, and rather than burying my mistake and making it look like it never happened, I ate some crow and reposted it, put in a bit of an apology, and changed the title so it wasn't quite so alarmist.

    So, I will say that on Friday of my first week, my hands are red from getting my knuckles wrapped so many times this week. But I still say it's a good start, and another lesson is learned.

    By the way, I think we can have plenty of headlines AND good content. 


    -Cameron McKenzie

  12. Apologies[ Go to top ]

    My apologies for being too harsh. I didn't mean to come off that hard.

    I was merely frustrated that I had to go through this all over again. I was caught off guard when this story broke last week. Then I thought that maybe something changed and it was actually true now.

    I always come back to TSS because it used to be great and I have no doubt it can be great again. I still find useful information here and I wish that staff well.
  13. Monopolies claiming to be open[ Go to top ]

    Hi Cameron:

    No need for mia-culpas - especially so soon after starting a new job. TSS isn't a news organization. It is an excellent community to digest the meaning driving the headlines.

    Also, while the TSS community is still large, it has been suffering from absent parents for a while. You're going to see cutting posting from community members who have been deprived.

    The issue at hand in this topic: How will the developer community respond to Oracle and Apple's moves to play like monopolies while claiming to be open?

    -Frank
  14. Thanks for your understanding, tss community.

    My skin is thick, and when there's a screw up, I expect to hear the full brunt of your frustration. It won't fall onto deaf ears.

    >>How will the developer community respond to Oracle and Apple's moves to play like monopolies while claiming to be open?

    It's my first week, so I don't want to start picking fights with the die-hard Apple community. Even moderate opinions on Apple can trigger the biggest flame wars. As far as Apple goes, I have this big problem of loving their products, but despising many of their practices. Okay, maybe I'll tone down the 'despise' part to 'do not understand' many of their business practices.







  15. Oracle and Apple[ Go to top ]

    Hey Frank. You inspired a new post about Apple and their new licensing agreement. Let's see how quickly this one turns into a flame war. :(

  16. So, it seems there is alot of confusing right now about this particular topic. Many people and sites are reporting the same thing that Frank has stated, but a little research is making it very hard to confirm the assertion. I'm not sure right now if this is something that has happened, is about to happen, or something that will never happen. I do hope the latter is true. But until we can get some really solid evidence from Sun or Oracle that indeed there has been a change in the license for OpenSolaris, we may have to conclude that indeed, OpenSolaris is still open.

    I do apologize for not doing more due diligence in confirming this story before posting it to the front page. I will continue to look into this story and post back what I find.
  17. with the Change to Solaris 10?[ Go to top ]

    Solaris 10 was released in 2005.
    I'm pretty sure the license for OpenSolaris did not change with the release of Solaris 10 as OpenSolaris did not exist at the time.
  18. It's just a new set of licensing terms that have been released, not necessarily a new product.

    I guess they're just saying that you can now download it and install it, you don't have to grab any discs off your local sales rep and get a key to get it working, and if you just want to play with it for 90 days, you're good. After that, if you're serious about using it, you've got to call your rep and pay the piper.

    It all seems reasonable, and I this doesn't have any impact on OpenSolaris whatsoever.


    This is a big reprinting of their terms. Under the circumstances, I think it's probably warranted.


    **************************************

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