Illumos Shines New Light

Posted on August 7, 2010

As many of you have no doubt heard, this week Illumos opened its doors to the world.

What is Illumos? A change to put “OpenSolaris” back on track. When this slay ride started, “OpenSolaris” wasn’t a distribution, it was a community. It was users and developers and sysadmins gathering around a great operating systems code, now free to learn from, contribute to, and to innovate on. But that’s not how it really went down… is it?

Illumos isn’t a fork. There is no such desire. We’re simply moving the code out into the community, where it belongs, and leaving the corporate red tape behind. Garrett D’Amore, who has spearheaded this and will serve as our benevolent dictator for the time being, has already invited Oracle to participate. I really hope that they do. We have here now a way for the community to contribute better than ever before, and a way to cross-pollinate with the Oracle gate in an orderly way. By keeping them in sync we can share between the two as we wish.

Whats best of all is that while Garrett is a Nexenta employee, this is not a Nexenta owned project. Nexenta will use it, as will Joyent, as will Belenix, as will anyone else who desires.

While I wish we didn’t need to setup an external community repository, all other alternatives have been exhausted.

This isn’t really even the first time this has happened. At Genunix there was for some time SVN Repostitories maintained… they simply didn’t get much love. Whats different this time is that there are an increasing number of developers that depend on this codebase which can not be at the continous mercy of Oracle. We can find security in having our own community gate.

I personally applaud Garrett for his decisive leadership and Nexenta for allowing him to pursue this. The future is looking a lot more bright and I really hope that Oracle will join in and we can all work hard to innovate on this amazing platform, together.