Alan Hargreaves' Blog

The ramblings of a former Australian SaND TSC* Principal Field Technologist article – Linux goes head to head with Sun

Manek Dubash of Techworld appears to be another looking to fan flames of the issues between the CDDL and the GPL in his article titled Linux goes head-to-head with Sun.

In one corner is the GPL, or General Purpose License (sic), a free licence. It allows you to use the software in pretty much any way you see fit. One key proviso though is that any code that becomes part of the distributed product must also be published under the GPL.

That second sentence is the sticking point for a lot of commercial developers.

I found it disappointing that Manek only went to the organisation that is least likely to say anything complimentary about the license. It should also be noted that it is a condition of teh GPL that makes for the incompatibility with CDDL (and actually quite a lot of OSI approved license).

Simon Phipps actually wrote a very good article on the difference between Copyright and Patents which discusses why we address intellectual property in his article titled The IP Elephant in the IT Kitchen.

Also, like many other reporters Manek has made the mistake of reporting that Sun and Open Solaris is in competition with Linux. Never let the facts get in the way of a good story huh?

Sun as a company is in competition with Red Hat as a company. You can’t compete with a social movement. Indeed Sun sells a lot of linux as well as Solaris.

Open Solaris is not intended to steal developers away from Linux.

The community of Open Source developers is far larger than just the Linux Community. There are many folks who have a great interest in Open Solaris.

I’ve always been a fan of using the right tool (be that command, operating environment, real tools etc) for the job at hand. There are things that Solaris does very well and there are things Linux does very well. There is no one correct operating system for all environments.

Sometimes this means Solaris, sometimes it means Linux or one of the BSDs, sometimes it even means Windows.

I am hoping that by releaseing Open Solaris and having folks able to see how Sun has approached various Operating System problems that the general knowledge of such will be raised as such, computing as a whole moves forward.

Manek, is it too much to ask for a little balance in your reporting?

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Written by Alan

February 9, 2005 at 11:35 pm

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