OpenSolaris is Dead. Long Live Solaris 11 Express

Leaked Oracle memo describes the demise of OpenSolaris in greedy corporate detail

A post at the alasdair on everything blog leaked a memo sent to the Oracle engineering time on August 12th, stating in no uncertain terms that Oracle will not be releasing further builds of OpenSolaris. Specifically: "All of Oracle’s efforts on binary distributions of Solaris technology will be focused on Solaris 11. We will not release any other binary distributions, such as nightly or bi-weekly builds of Solaris binaries, or an OpenSolaris 2010.05 or later distribution. We will determine a simple, cost-effective means of getting enterprise users of prior OpenSolaris binary releases to migrate to S11 Express." News about Oracle's Solaris strategy has been a long time coming. Developers and users alike have been speculating on Oracle's lack of communication and the departure of key Solaris engineering resources since the Sun acquisition. The OpenSolaris Governing Board (OGB) had set 8/16 as a deadline for Oracle to appoint a liaison to the Board. In its typical middle finger approach to the IT industry, Oracle instead decides to move all the hard work from the OpenSolaris team to a closed development model. According to the memo, most of the source code licensing will remain CDDL. However, in order to maintain control over technical innovations in the operating system, Oracle will release the source only after the enterprise Solaris distribution is published. Nightly source code releases will no longer be available. Corporate insider members of the Oracle Technology Network will have early access to binaries and source code, and may be able to contribute code "where that is appropriate" (read: where it benefits Oracle). Some other choice quotes from the memo: - "We can at any time make a specific decision to post advance technical information for any project, when it serves a particular useful need to do so." - Marketing hype for new features in the OS - "We will encourage and listen to any and all license requests for Solaris technology... All such requests will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis" - We will probably ignore most requests for new licensing options, but in the spirit of customer service we will gladly have a form on our site that is piped to /dev/null - "We will continue active open development, including upstream contributions, in specific areas that accelerate our overall Solaris goals" - We continue to accept source code contributions where it benefits us, but we won't release the contributions until they have been incorporated in an enterprise Solaris and are turning a profit for us This news following the public announcement that Oracle is suing Google over the use of Java for Android, a move which some speculate was part of the Sun acquisition strategy from the beginning. Convince me that Oracle isn't evil. I really, really need to hear it, because IT management everywhere buys its software hook, line and sinker.

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