Welcome!

Linux Containers Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Sematext Blog, Roger Strukhoff

Related Topics: Java IoT, Linux Containers

Java IoT: Article

Why It Makes Sense for Sun to Open-Source Java Libraries & Solaris Kernel

Why It Makes Sense for Sun to Open-Source Java Libraries & Solaris Kernel

It makes a lot of sense for Sun to open source the Java Libraries and Solaris Kernel.

It's sound business for Sun to (a) Open source license the Java J2SE,J2EE and J2ME framework libraries; and (b) Release a fork of the Solaris Kernel under the GPL license.

It would benefit the entire Java based industry - including the free software, open source, and proprietary based vendors - to open license the core J2ME, J2SE, J2EE libraries and Java to bytecode compilers.

Java's primary strength, the ability to write code which is constantly portable across many vendors platforms, would be greatly enhanced if all of the vendors were using the same core libraries.

To insure that the standard base core would not become polluted with incompatible forks, the source could be licensed with a clause requiring any incompatible changes or any additional classes or methods to be moved to and occupy only the vendor's namespace. Another clause would require that the vendor version of the Java-to-bytecode compiler and any GUI IDE defaults to generating portable bytecode, without embedding any vendor-specific references.

The OSF definition of an open source license clause five explicitly states:

"The license may require derived works to carry a different name or version number from the original software."

Developers and vendors would only be required to shift changes to the vendors'/developers' namespace if the changes were incompatible with the JCP JSR open standards. This would not prevent the development/distribution of additional optimizations, ports, or bug fixes. Since adoption of standards has for a long time been an open source tradition, it would not be much of an imposition on the open source community.

Vendors don't have to use all the same "core" libraries - just provide the same standard interface. The open source Java core can been seen as a starting common base. Each vendor would be free to "short circuit" their implementation as long as the standard API behaviour remained the same. Vendors would still be free to compete on their JVM performance along with how well it performs interfacing databases, integrated development tools, etc.

Sun could require contributors to the Java Open Core to let Sun or the JCP dual-license the result as Sun does with OpenOffice.org and StarOffice. If a vendor does not wish to disclose its modifcations then the vendor could pay for a closed source license scheme. The payment could then be split up amongst Sun, the JCP, and the contributors.

Ask IBM and HP what their customers are demanding and you will find out more often than not that it's vendor-neutral/independent solutions. Customers don't want lock-in slavery anymore. That is why Linux is such a success and why there is more demand for Java skills than any other programming language.

It should not be necessary to open source license Sun's JVMs. In the long run it could greatly benefit Sun to develop the JVM under a dual license as it is doing with OpenOffice.org and selling StarOffice.

Releasing a fork of the Solaris Unix Kernel makes even more sense when you consider Sun's move towards commodity based hardware, like AMD's opteron, and enterprise desktop systems. Sun is going to need drivers to interoperate with x86 hardware and common peripherals. In comparison to Linux, the range and quality of hardware drivers available to Solaris is pitiful.

If Sun can manage to get out from under the SCO Group's claims over the old AT&T code base, by dealing direct with Novell who still appear to hold the rights and copyrights, then Sun would be free to release a fork of the Solaris kernel under the GPL license.

Sun would be then free to take any source code from the Linux kernel and incorporate it into the GPL'ed Solaris kernel fork. Sun would then free to deploy that kernel in desktop and clustered systems markets, where Linux currently does have a lead over Sun.

More Stories By David Mohring

David Mohring is a New Zealand-based Linux applications developer.

Comments (9) View Comments

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Most Recent Comments
Pawan 06/10/04 01:42:06 AM EDT

This article needs to do more than simply be unreasonably obsessive with open sourcing Java. The article doesnt have anything that can prove that either Sun or dev. community will benefit from opening up Java. Besides, Java classes are all open source, and I dont think anybody would like M$ or some org to change the source for java.exe and impose it upon the users.
I hope JDJ raises its bar and thinks twice before publishing such cock-and-bull articles that make open-source stuff seem childish.

Layton 06/08/04 05:32:40 PM EDT

I don't see that it makes any difference whether Sun open Sources Java or Solaris. As far as Java is concerned, there is currently a re-implementation of it happening that should satisfy the "anti-proprietary" crowd. And I don't see why we need Solaris. We have Linux, 3 BSD's, Dos, and someone working on an NT clone. If Sun wants to open source their stuff, then fine. But if not, they have to live with what they fix, and I don't see that it is anyone elses place to tell them what that should be. If Sun's customers aren't secure with what Sun is doing, then they should find alternatives for themselvs that they are happy with. Again, they need to live with their own choices.

Basically, I believe that choice is good. If we loose the option of a closed source solution we have just as much lost a choice as if we had lost an open source option. Both have advantages. The only thing I would like to see Sun do is to decide what they want to do, and then do it. But then, I'm not on their board, I don't own Sun stock, and I'm not a Sun customer.

However if they made a sparc based laptop that ran a recent linux, I might re-consider. Maybe.

FUD Stomper 06/08/04 01:02:40 PM EDT

The problems with "getting components to work with Linux" are NOT due to kernel differences. ANY end user who can plunk out "diff" and "/usr/src/linux/scripts/patch-kernel" can be assured of running the latest-greatest, the earliest, or anything they desire...

What does that have to do with "open sourcing Java"? Not much, other than to say that currently it is even easier to switch from one JRE to another...

I would venture to guess that the VAST majority of NOISE one hears about "open sourcing Java" is simply an effort on the part of vendors of closed Operating Systems to muddy the waters in the futile hope of clinging to their shrinking base...

I am growing tired of Sys-Con fueling this. Spend more time on articles that help DEVELOPERS get stuff done!

SAJ951 06/08/04 10:20:38 AM EDT

Seems to me that this publication and IBM are about the only ones crying for Sun to open source java. IBM has an implementation of Java - why don''t they just open source all of that and say to the open source community "here you go, build on this"? We''ve already seen what happens with open sourcing platforms with Linux - some benefits but also lots of problems. JDJ - we''ve heard your cries ad nauseum - enough already - isn''t it time to get back to your core missiong - ie. providing information useful to the Java Developer?

Trey Spiva 06/08/04 09:20:53 AM EDT

How will it help the Java community to have Java fracture. Because of the lack of standards caused by the fracturing of Java, it will become impossible for 3rd party tool venders to support the Java language.

Example: Linux is a GREAT operating system. However, few people us it (except for the die hard MS haters). Why? Becausae it is too hard for the common user to get components to work on Linux. Why? Because each Linux kernal is different and there are no standards that 3rd party venders can conform to. So, instead we have each kernal vender fighting each other instead of a organized attack to defeat other operating systems like MS windows. This approach is doomed to fail.

Malcolm 06/08/04 07:47:28 AM EDT

Get a life guys!!!

Stop banging on about making java open source and go write some java code.

JDJ should commission some articles that help the community not this endless tirade of tripe about Open Source. I don''t even need to mention that the source is available etc... etc... yawn... yawn...

Mike 06/08/04 06:51:51 AM EDT

The source code is available (as nonemouse said) and vendors besides Sun offer JVMs. I see no advantage in having Java open sourced. As a Java developer, if I want additional capabilities not found in the standard distribution from Sun, I go out to the web and get them. No lock-in there.
I would prefer that Sun not open source Java. Especially the core libraries, which define the Java framework. Since an entire industry has built itself around this framework from Sun, it seems to me that Sun is doing an outstanding job. Let''s not try to fix something that is not broken. (And no, I don''t work for Sun.)

nonemouse 06/08/04 05:26:15 AM EDT

Vendors can already add whatever they want in their own namespace.
And they already do.

So what are you saying?

Why does the linux crowd have such trouble understanding that the java
source is already available... the only restriction is that you have to
pass the compatibility test if you want to call your modified version "java".

bored 06/08/04 04:30:51 AM EDT

"Customers don''t want lock-in slavery anymore," yeah!
We don''t want Sun to lock us in. We want Microsoft to take the open-source Java and change it ... uh uh ... inovate on it ... and then force it on all of us through the Windows desktop monoply. Grow up!

@ThingsExpo Stories
Pulzze Systems was happy to participate in such a premier event and thankful to be receiving the winning investment and global network support from G-Startup Worldwide. It is an exciting time for Pulzze to showcase the effectiveness of innovative technologies and enable them to make the world smarter and better. The reputable contest is held to identify promising startups around the globe that are assured to change the world through their innovative products and disruptive technologies. There w...
SYS-CON Events announced today Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Venafi, the Immune System for the Internet™ and the leading provider of Next Generation Trust Protection, will exhibit at @DevOpsSummit at 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Venafi is the Immune System for the Internet™ that protects the foundation of all cybersecurity – cryptographic keys and digital certificates – so they can’t be misused by bad guys in attacks...
Smart Cities are here to stay, but for their promise to be delivered, the data they produce must not be put in new siloes. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mathias Herberts, Co-founder and CTO of Cityzen Data, will deep dive into best practices that will ensure a successful smart city journey.
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long dev...
In today's uber-connected, consumer-centric, cloud-enabled, insights-driven, multi-device, global world, the focus of solutions has shifted from the product that is sold to the person who is buying the product or service. Enterprises have rebranded their business around the consumers of their products. The buyer is the person and the focus is not on the offering. The person is connected through multiple devices, wearables, at home, on the road, and in multiple locations, sometimes simultaneously...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
SYS-CON Events announced today that 910Telecom will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Housed in the classic Denver Gas & Electric Building, 910 15th St., 910Telecom is a carrier-neutral telecom hotel located in the heart of Denver. Adjacent to CenturyLink, AT&T, and Denver Main, 910Telecom offers connectivity to all major carriers, Internet service providers, Internet backbones and ...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings in the last year, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their back-end AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT – especially in the connected home and office. Amazon is extending its reach by building on its dominant Cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strategy, recently announced Replenishment Services, the Echo/Alexa voice recognition control platform, the 6-7 strategic...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Akana has announced the availability of version 8 of its API Management solution. The Akana Platform provides an end-to-end API Management solution for designing, implementing, securing, managing, monitoring, and publishing APIs. It is available as a SaaS platform, on-premises, and as a hybrid deployment. Version 8 introduces a lot of new functionality, all aimed at offering customers the richest API Management capabilities in a way that is easier than ever for API and app developers to use.
Personalization has long been the holy grail of marketing. Simply stated, communicate the most relevant offer to the right person and you will increase sales. To achieve this, you must understand the individual. Consequently, digital marketers developed many ways to gather and leverage customer information to deliver targeted experiences. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lou Casal, Founder and Principal Consultant at Practicala, discussed how the Internet of Things (IoT) has accelerated our abil...
With so much going on in this space you could be forgiven for thinking you were always working with yesterday’s technologies. So much change, so quickly. What do you do if you have to build a solution from the ground up that is expected to live in the field for at least 5-10 years? This is the challenge we faced when we looked to refresh our existing 10-year-old custom hardware stack to measure the fullness of trash cans and compactors.
The emerging Internet of Everything creates tremendous new opportunities for customer engagement and business model innovation. However, enterprises must overcome a number of critical challenges to bring these new solutions to market. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Martin, CTO/CIO at nfrastructure, outlined these key challenges and recommended approaches for overcoming them to achieve speed and agility in the design, development and implementation of Internet of Everything solutions wi...
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....
I wanted to gather all of my Internet of Things (IOT) blogs into a single blog (that I could later use with my University of San Francisco (USF) Big Data “MBA” course). However as I started to pull these blogs together, I realized that my IOT discussion lacked a vision; it lacked an end point towards which an organization could drive their IOT envisioning, proof of value, app dev, data engineering and data science efforts. And I think that the IOT end point is really quite simple…
"My role is working with customers, helping them go through this digital transformation. I spend a lot of time talking to banks, big industries, manufacturers working through how they are integrating and transforming their IT platforms and moving them forward," explained William Morrish, General Manager Product Sales at Interoute, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.