CentOS is a community-supported, freely-available operating system based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Lance Davis created CentOS and now he goes absent without leave. In an open letter from his fellow CentOS developers:
You have long promised a statement of CentOS project funds; to this date this has not appeared. You hold sole control of the centos.org domain with no deputy; this is not proper. You have, it seems, sole ‘Founders’ rights in the IRC channels with no deputy ; this is not proper.
I just hope that Lance gets back to his fellow developers and gets things sorted out for all of us. This is concerning as we’ve large number of servers deployed using CentOS. It gets more interesting:
Lance vanished from the project some time in 2008. Everybody needs time off from projects from time to time, so there was no real need to worry about that. What there was to worry about is the following: Lance is the only one, who can make active changes to the centos.org domain, as he “owns it”. Nobody else in the team is able to add nameservers, for instance. Recently he put an anonymizing service on the domain, so that nobody from the outside can see who that domain belongs to.
The third thing – and that is the one which hurts me the most – is that Lance is the one who has access to the Google AdSense and the Paypal accounts, again without a backup. We have asked for overviews of the accounts several times now and haven’t gotten back any answers. This money was donated towards the project and could have been used for professionally made media for fairs and conventions, professionally made advertisement material for the same, hardware, community support (give out media to people who want to show off CentOS) and so on. To make it clear: Nobody in the CentOS team wants to make money off the project, we all have jobs and do CentOS in our free time.
If he’s disappeared, how they are going to move all servers and domain? May be Lance can keep money and handover domain, IRC admin access to his fellow developers. What do you think?
Update (Aug-1-2009): Long Live CentOS
The CentOS Development team had a routine meeting today with Lance Davis in attendance. During the meeting a majority of issues were resolved immediately and a working agreement was reached with deadlines for remaining unresolved issues. There should be no impact to any CentOS users going forward.
The CentOS project is now in control of the CentOS.org and CentOS.info domains and owns all trademarks, materials, and artwork in the CentOS distributions.
CentOS is not dead or going away. The signers of the Open Letter are fully committed to continue the CentOS Project. Updates and new releases will continue.
Most of the Issues have been resolved, there is an action plan with agreed upon dates for any outstanding issues.