My OpenSolaris for Developers talk at the Irish Opensource Technology Conference
By bnitz on Jun 20, 2008
I should thank the sponsors and organizers of the Irish OpenSource Technology Conference (IOTC) for giving me the opportunity to present OpenSolaris as an Open Source Developer Tool to some of Ireland's brightest and most energetic open source developers. There were quire a few university attendees and Barry was able to bring in people from small and midsized Irish companies such as openApp and hosting365 as well as multinationals such as Microsoft, IBM, RedHat, Sun and AIB (more about this later!)
My talk seemed to be well understood by the audience and I managed to empty out a heavy backpack full of ¨Free as in Free" OpenSolaris 2008.05 CDs afterwards. I didn't have enough time to talk about SMF or PKG(5) in detail, but I did spend some time on ZFS and Dtrace; both of which I'm certain would be useful to any Open Source developer. Even if your pointy-haired boss demands that you must code your application in VisualBasic and deploy on Redhat 3.5 via Wine, you can sneak OpenSolaris onto one of your QA department's test boxes and run your software in a zone where you can dtrace it. Or you could set up an OpenSolaris file server with ZFS snapshots as frequently as necessary (perhaps every keystroke for some UIDs?) I won't tell anyone... honest ;-)
One gentleman grabbed a CD and asked me if OpenSolaris 2008.05 was available on Sparc. Another asked whether zones could be Opensolaris as well as linux and whether you could have hundreds of copies of apache running independently in hundreds of zones each with its own isolated ports. One of the attendees had used dtrace before log ago, but he didn't know it could do so much. (Remind me to blog about my "anti-destruction, destructive dtrace script later!) A couple of university students spoke of Sun's mistakes in the past, were surprised that Sun was so involved with FOSS software. They said they didn't see much Solaris or OpenSolaris for years, but they're starting to see it more often again. Fantastic, the spark (if not Sparc) is back!
I caught the tail end of a RedHat talk on LVM2 later. I admire anyone with the Red Hat certified expertise required to do old-style volume management, but to see the amount of effort that goes into what anyone (including me) can do with a couple of ZFS commands makes me want to burn a stack of punched cards!