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Sun Renews Its Vows to Open-Source Solaris

Sun Renews Its Vows to Open-Source Solaris

Sun has been repeating itself lately and saying that it really is gonna open source Solaris 10, the next major update of the Unix operating system, by the end of the year, to get other people to contribute to it and hopefully revivify interest in the one-foot-in-the-grave OS.

Sun will continue to control what goes into the thing. The way things are structured the project will supposedly resemble Red Hat's Fedora.

Solaris-as-open-source is a veritable legal minefield because Sun frankly doesn't know where some of the code comes from or who owns it, a realization on the part of its legal department that stopped Sun from open sourcing the operating system years ago when the notion first presented itself.

As a result, Solaris won't exactly be your classic open source project. Sun won't be able to share all the code.

Solaris 10 includes widgetry called Janus appropriately enough that will run Linux application unchanged. Whether Janus will be ready when Solaris 20 pops is another story. Sun may have to play catch-up.

Meanwhile, Sun, which like the little boy who put his finger in the dike, is trying to stop Wall Street from swamping it as it rushes to replace Sun gear with industry standard stuff, has been telling folks that Solaris on Opteron is a heck of a sight better and cheaper than Red Hat, which it's now targeting as Red Hat does Sun.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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