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Is The Linux Community Afraid of Opensolaris?

It's about time someone wrote this article:

I know the headline is a little bit provoking. But when you think about some comments from Linux proponents you could think so.

This is an interesting development. In the years before, there wasn't such comments. Solaris was considered as a dead end. But then the game changed. We open-sourced Solaris. The full monty over the time. We open-sourced the cluster framework. And we won´t stop to open source further code until there is no more code to open-source. BTW: I find "Sun should contribute more" really interesting. In the moment you start up your text processor on your favourite Linux distribution you've gone through more code contributed by Sun than of anybody else. You´ve already traversed a large amount of code contributed by Sun when you just login into GNOME. This is a fact most people tend to ignore.

Is the Linux community afraid of Opensolaris? [c0t0d0s0.eu]

This might come handy...

The HCL (Hardware Compatibility List) now includes OpenSolaris content. Sun's hardware compatibility list includes the systems and components that run OpenSolaris, and the drivers and devices it supports.

=> HCL for OpenSolaris

OpenSolaris UNIX OS Officially Launched

OpenSolaris AKA project Indiana is here. Sun and the OpenSolaris community launched the official first version of the open-source OpenSolaris operating system, which has only been available in pre-release versions for developers until now. New operating system includes:

=> Single CD installation (like many Linux distros)

=> New installer and package manager

=> DTrace, Containers, ZFS and other technologies

Amazon is offering selected developers the ability to run OpenSolaris applications on its EC2 "cloud computing" servers. Participation for now is by invitation only - the service has a beta tag while the company learns how to scale up.

Companies with OpenSolaris packages available for EC2 from Monday include Gigaspaces and Zamanda, with Sun also providing Glassfish and Ruby on Rails packages.

OpenSolaris upgrades are to be released every six months.

Download OpenSolaris

The Live CD makes it simple to boot to a fully functional desktop environment, including Firefox and Thunderbird. Try it without fear -- our instant rollback feature works like a giant undo button, so your system is always protected, and you'll never lose work. And, you can load OpenSolaris 2008.05 easily in a variety of virtualization technologies including the open source VirtualBox hypervisor:

This is a great way to build UNIX based NAS server with all goodness of ZFS.

Sun recently announced the addition of powerful developer tools and expanded professional service capabilities to help developers better leverage the growing open source communities that are fast changing the economics of the storage IT landscape. Over 3,000 members and 30+ projects within an active and growing OpenSolaris storage community demonstrate a groundswell within the storage industry for developers and enterprise companies to use open source alternatives to expensive proprietary storage offerings.

Sun further claimed that average developer will be able to set up an OpenSolaris server is about 10 minutes. You can build a OpenSolaris operating system storage server in 10 minutes or less. This how-to recipe is intended to familiarize developers with the simple commands in Solaris for performing data management tasks, i.e. ZFS, NFS, CIFS, COMSTAR etc.

Setting Up an OpenSolaris Storage Server in 10 Minutes or Less

Setting Up an OpenSolaris NAS Box: Father-Son Bonding

Now, the million dollar question - will free software able to sell Sun hardware?

Sun is planning to release OpenSolaris soon with better package management, GNU userland tools and fast release cycle just like Fedora or Ubuntu Linux. Sun's Ian Murdock gave a presentation about OpenSolaris at LugRadio Live this past weekend. He explained how OpenSolaris reflects Sun's changing platform strategy and also discussed some of the technical attributes that differentiate OpenSolaris from Linux.

The first steps towards this goal have been realized in the latest developer preview release of OpenSolaris which offers a complete GNOME desktop environment as well as a package system and an installer. The final release will take place in May and the distribution will adhere to a six-month release cycle, just like Fedora and Ubuntu.

Few suggestion...

  • Get Gnome desktop instead of Sun branded Java desktop. Please keep your corporate color away from my desktop.
  • Currently OpenSolaris does not support virtual console
  • Get complete package collection; I want something like FreeBSD ports or GNU/Debian APT repos.
  • Get pulse-audio or may be ALSA sound support

=> Sun touts big plans for OpenSolaris as first release nears

Project Indiana is working towards creating a binary distribution of an operating system built out of the OpenSolaris source code. The distribution is a point of integration for several current projects on OpenSolaris.org, including those to make the installation experience easier, to modernize the look and feel of OpenSolaris on the desktop, and to introduce a network-based package management system into Solaris.

The resulting distribution is a live-CD install image, and is fully permissible to be redistributed by anyone. It will also have the capability for developers to create their own, customized distribution based on Project Indiana.

Now the first preview version is available. This is an x86-based LiveCD install image, containing some new and emerging OpenSolaris technologies. This may result in instabilities that lead to system panics or data corruption.

Among the features contained in this release are:

  • Single CD download, with LiveCD 'try before you install' capabilities
  • Caiman installer, with significantly improved installation experience
  • ZFS as the default filesystem
  • Image packaging system, with capabilities to pull packages from network repositories
  • GNU utilities in the default $PATH
  • bash as the default shell
  • GNOME 2.20 desktop environment

Download Project Indiana OpenSolaris Developer Preview ISO

=> Visit the official site to grab ISO file

This is an interesting filesystem comparison. If you are looking to build cheap storage for personal use file system decision is quite important:

This is my attempt to cut through the hype and uncertainty to find a storage subsystem that works. I compared XFS and EXT4 under Linux with ZFS under OpenSolaris. Aside from the different kernels and filesystems, I tested internal and external journal devices and software and hardware RAIDs. Software RAIDs are "raid-10 near2" with 6 disks on Linux. On Solaris the zpool is created with three mirrors of two disks each. Hardware RAIDs use the Areca's RAID-10 for both Linux and Solaris. Drive caches are disabled throughout, but the battery-backed cache on the controller is enabled when using hardware RAID.

=> ZFS, XFS, and EXT4 filesystems compared