Tuesday Aug 19, 2008

Open JDK in Debian's Lenny -- Distro Grandslam!

Not long after I began my journey home from Debconf last week, OpenJDK officially made it into Lenny.  Lenny is Debian's next release and is due out late next month (fingers and toes crossed). 

Pitching OpenJDK to the Debian powers-that-be: Doko (lower left) explains the finer details of OpenJDK to Mark Hymers at Debconf while, Neil, Phil and Joerg look on.

Can't Swing a Dead Cat without hitting a Distro with OpenJDK Included

With inclusion in Lenny, OpenJDK is now in all of the top four FOSS GNU/ Linux distros and available for two more:

OpenJDK included in Available for

Thank Yous All Around

A big Mahalo to everyone working on Fedora, Ubuntu, OpenSUSE and Debian who made this possible with specific shout-outs to:

Pau for now...

Thursday Jun 26, 2008

My Interview with Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst

Figuring I had nothing to lose, the first day of the Red Hat summit I introduced myself to Red Hat's new CEO and president, Jim Whitehurst and asked if he would be up for a podcast. 

Instead of making up some plausible excuse, he was very receptive and gave me his card.  He also gave me his cell number and told me to give him a call the following day to set something up.

When we got together I was very impressed with how approachable and down to earth Jim was as well as his excitement and enthusiasm for his job.  Take a listen...

My interview with Jim (12:10)  Listen (Mp3) Listen (ogg)

Fedora fan #1, Jim Whitehurst

Some of the topics we tackle:

  • How Jim heard about the opportunity at Red Hat
  • Jim's programming background and his work at Delta as COO
  • Matt Szulik is the visionary, Jim's emphasis is on execution and "focus, focus, focus"
  • Red Hat is "all in" when it comes to open source and how their last non-free offering (RHN satellite) went free that day.
  • Proprietary software isn't wrong, open source is simply a better model (that being said, he'd love to see IBM open source DB2)
  • His conversation with Jonathan Schwartz and the challenge that Jonathan faces
  • Reaching out to other open source players and taking them to dinner
  • What are Jim's biggest opportunities and challenges
  • Jim's key areas of focus for Red Hat (a couple of which are virtualization and making sure Linux is "cloud ready")
Pau for now...

Tuesday May 13, 2008

OpenJDK and IcedTea, A view from the Fedora side

Last week, on the first day of JavaOne, I was serendipitously able to grab Tom Fitzsimmons, (the owner of Iced Tea) Patrick Macdonald (Tom's boss) and Karsten Wade (community contact for OpenJDK) from Red Hat for a podcast.  We sat down and talked about the journey to get OpenJDK into Fedora that began in earnest last JavaOne.

BTW today just happens to be the launch of Fedora 9.  Congratulations to the whole Fedora community!

My Talk with Tom, Patrick and Karsten (23:43)  Listen (Mp3)   Listen (ogg)

Patrick, Tom (kneeling) and Karsten -- helping to put the "Open" in Java.

Some of the topics we tackle:

  • Attacking the "remaining 4%" to get OpenJDK into Fedora ASAP (leveraging GNUClasspath components)
  • FOSDEM 2007 -- building bridges with the Sun crew 
  • Trademark issues and the birth of "IcedTea"(Fitz really did go back to his hotel room and hack rpms last JavaOne after OpenJDK was announced)
  • IcedTea -> OpenJDK in Fedora 9.
  • OpenJDK now available for RHEL5 and CentOS5 via EPEL and getting it ready to being moved into RHEL5 proper
  • NetBeans coming soon to a Fedora 9 update
Pau for now...

Thursday May 08, 2008

OpenJDK6 Available for RHEL 5 and CentOS5

Tuesday morning at JavaOne, Karsten Wade, RedHat employee, Fedora Board member and Distro Gladiator gave me the great news -- The OpenJDK6 package is now available for RHEL 5 and CentOS 5!

The package was uploaded to the Fedora Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux (EPEL) repository and can be easily added to either RHEL or CentOS (here's how).

Podcast to come

While I was at JavaOne I was able to sit down and do a podcast with Tom Fitzsimmons, Patrick Macdonald who actually worked on the IcedTea project at RedHat and enabled OpenJDK to become a reality.  Look for that early next week.

Pau for now...

Wednesday Feb 27, 2008

Talkin' with Fedora's Spot

Right across from the Sun booth at SCALE was none other that Tom "Spot" Callaway and the Fedora stand.  I had only spoken to Tom over email and actually owed him a response regarding how we might be able to assist with their SPARC port. 

It was great to meet him in person and I figured that since he was there I might as well podcast him.  Turned out to be a great decision.

My interview with Spot (8:31)  Listen (Mp3)    Listen (ogg)

You cant fake that grin! 

Who is Spot?

  • The Fedora engineering manager
  • The person responsible for the Aurora SPARC Linux Project (a port of Fedora to SPARC).
  • The guy responsible for RPM Packaging Standards and Practices on the Fedora Engineering Steering Committee
  • A maintainer of tons o' packages (a lot that seem to have to do with Perl)
  • An eight-year Red Hat employee.
  • A major deity among prosimians who, according to his Bio, is worshipped by lemurs throughout the known universe.

Some of the topics we tackle:

  • The upcoming Fedora 9 due out in April
  • What does it mean to be the Fedora engineering manager
  • How he plays Spock to Paul Frields' Kirk
  • What the heck is a Spin?
  • How he rode the High Availability gravy train into Red Hat
Pau for now...


Monday Nov 05, 2007

Red Hat joins the Free Java Party in a big way

A while ago when Sun first announced that it was open sourcing the Java platform, Red Hat joined members of the community in voicing their support.  In fact they even put a big thank you on their home page.

This morning they've gone even further and turned their kind words into action by announcing that they have signed Sun's contributor agreement (SCA).   By signing the SCA, all Red Hat engineers are now able to participate in any and all of Sun's Free and open source projects. 

Maybe more importantly, and certainly more timely, in addition to the SCA, Red Hat has also signed Sun's Open JDK Community TCK License and have joined the OpenJDK community.

Iced Tea anyone?

By signing the TCK license Red Hat now has access to the test suite (TCK) to verify that whatever JDK derivatives they create are fully compatible with the Java SE 6 spec.  This is particularly good news for Free Java lovers everywhere since there still remains 4% of the JDK code that is encumbered (i.e. owned by 3rd parties who not agreed to open source their bits).  Over the past months, folks here at Sun have been working quite diligently in clearing these last few hold outs.

At the same time our folks have been burning the midnight oil, a bunch of the engineers with Red Hat/Classpath project have been putting in a lot of time working on their own completely Free JDK  playfully dubbed, "IcedTea."  Now with the TCK/SCA in hand this should drive greater alignment between the two projects and the IcedTea team will not only be able to contribute directly to OpenJDK, but also  test for compatibility.

This is good news for everyone.  The desire for a completely Free JDK, sooner rather than later, is not only of interest to Sun and Red Hat but was a big topic at FOSSCamp last week.  Now with Red Hat throwing their hat in the ring (sorry, I couldn't resist the bad pun) things should start happening a lot sooner to the benefit of GNU/Linux and other Free distros everywhere.

Thanks Red Hat and welcome!

Pau for now...


I look after Sun's relationships with the various GNU/Linux communities as well as our relationship with the FSF. Last year, my family and I emigrated from Silicon Valley to Austin, TX.


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