• ZFS
    September 27, 2010

And now, page 2

Guest Author

To my team:

After 20 incredible years at Sun/Oracle, I have decided to try something new.

This was a very hard decision, and not one made lightly.  I have always enjoyed my work, and still do -- everything from MTS-2 to Sun Fellow to Oracle VP.  I love the people I work with and the technology we've created together, which is why I've been doing it for so long.  But I have always wanted to try doing a startup, and recently identified an opportunity that I just can't resist.  (We are in stealth mode, so that's all I can say for now.)

This team will always have a special place in my heart.  Being part of the Solaris team means doing the Right Thing, innovating, changing the rules, and being thought leaders -- creating the ideas that everyone else wants to copy. Add to that Oracle's unmatched market reach and ability to execute, and you have a combination that I believe will succeed in ways we couldn't have imagined two years ago.  I hope that Solaris and ZFS Storage are wildly successful, and that you have fun making it happen.

To the ZFS community:

Thank you for being behind us from Day One.  After a decade in the making, ZFS is now an adult.  Of course there's always more to do, and from this point forward, I look forward to watching you all do it.  There is a great quote whose origin I have never found: "Your ideas will go further if you don't insist on going with them."  That has proven correct many times in my life, and I am confident that it will prove true again.

For me, it's time to try the Next Big Thing.  Something I haven't fully fleshed out yet.  Something I don't fully understand yet.  Something way outside my comfort zone.  Something I might fail at.  Everything worth doing begins that way.  I'll let you know how it goes.

My last day at Oracle will be this Thursday, September 30, 2010.  After that you can reach me at my personal mac.com e-mail, with the usual first-dot-last construction.

It has truly been a wonderful couple of decades.  To everyone who taught me, worked with me, learned from me, and supported my efforts in countless ways large and small:  Thank you.

Join the discussion

Comments ( 42 )
  • Paul Johnston Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Best of luck, really enjoyed playing with the stuff you helped bring out.

    Hope you will continue blogging :-)

  • Seth Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Good luck to you Jeff. I certainly appreciate the thought leadership part there.

    Although I had fun, I feel that is almost blasphemy to say that; at least let's not ignore the value you added and the serious possibility ZFS has brought to the masses.


  • Eddie Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    One wonders at what point Oracle will even appear to care that so few of the people who created they technology they spent so much money on actually want to work for them.

  • guest Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Now that Sun is no more, there's place for a new Sun :)

  • bbr Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    after 20 years at Sun i wish you good luck for your new project. Thanks for ZFS and for your personal involvment to make it such a big success.


  • Rocky Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Addoil, 姐夫!

  • Harry He Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Thank you very much for your great ZFS. It is a pleasure working with your team. Good luck to you.

  • Alex Arnoldy Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Thank you very much for so much innovation and especially for the most forward-thinking, powerful, and innovative storage product in computing history.

  • Jason Dixon Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    How long until you show up on the Joyent blog? ;)

    P.S. Thanks for all the ZFS fun.

  • Richard Elling Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Congratulations Jeff! There is a big world out here, full of opportunities.

  • Jim Grisanzio Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Best of luck, Jeff! :)

  • Simon Breden Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Best wishes for your new venture, Jeff!

    Thanks for the best free, open source file system / RAID system currently available - ZFS.

  • Asriramanantha Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Best of luck. Regardless of what you say people will interpret this to meet their needs. Looking for more cool stuff from you.

  • rpool Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Remember that beer you had with Linus in 2008? I'm still curious how the beer tasted ... no wait, what you two talked about (:

  • Andrei Dorofeev Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Best of luck, Jeff! Looking forward to hear more about your startup. Please continue blogging! :)

  • Rudy Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Jeff, ZFS has been an amazing and exciting thing to work with. Thank you for it and for your insightful blog posts.

    Best of luck for your future :-)

  • John Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    ZFS is amazing, now we just need to bring that level of thinking to the virtualization world - PLEASE.

  • BerndH Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Good luck for the future and thanks for all the stuff you created. :)

  • Michael Widmann Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Every day we rely on the power of ZFS ... Jeff thanks for that powerful filesystem with all the features.. hope you continue your work on this ...

  • Ken Beer Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    As a thank you for ZFS, I looked up the origin of the quote you mentioned:

    "Just remember that ideas last longer than people or things. Your ideas will go farther if you do not insist upon going with them."

    — Jerry Kaplan, "Start-Up: A Silicon Valley Adventure," 1994

  • roforofo Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    goodluck all the way...

  • Mike La Spina Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Good luck with your next adventure Jeff.

    You rock!

  • Robin Harris Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Best of luck. Keep in touch.



  • Javen Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Good luck, Jeff. Wherever you go, you will be my friend.

  • Jeff Bonwick Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    @Ken Beer -- thanks for locating the quote! How did you find it? I had no luck with Google. As soon as you mentioned Kaplan's book that whole passage came back to me. Thank you. It's been bugging me for a while!

    @everyone -- I am drowning in kindness. Thank you so much. It is incredibly satisfying to see my "baby" loved. And at a time of personal transition like this, it's wonderful to know that I have so much support. Again, thank you.

  • Forrest Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    The time work with ZFS team will be remembered for long time.

    Take care and good luck, Jeff!

  • no to FUD Wednesday, September 29, 2010
  • Bart Muijzer Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    Jeff, I remember you presented ZFS to the Sun OS Ambassadors back in 2003. If you embark your new challenge with the same enthousiasm all will go well for you. Thanks for giving us ZFS! I wish you lots of luck and wisdom.

  • Alireza Haghighatkhah Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    Good luck Jeff.

  • Caglar Gulcehre Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    ZFS was a great innovation, I hope you'll be successful in your startup too. Best of lucks.

  • Deniz Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    I am so happy that I saw the evolution of ZFS as early Solaris 10 updates up until now.

    Best of luck to you and thank you so much for giving us ZFS.

  • Ajay Desai Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    Hey Jeff,

    Good Luck and thanks for the best file system I have ever used. I switch from Linux to open solaris just because of ZFS. Will you have a new blog, if so tell me where.

  • Christer Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    The day i discovered ZFS i realized there is a god after all...

    Thanks for making my administrator life alot easier.

    Good luck !

  • Michael Wednesday, September 29, 2010

    Thanks for zfs, Jeff. Amazing work.

    "No To FUD", lighten up buddy. Shame on you. In McVoy's '93 paper you quote on your page have a good long look at the phrase "acrimony between competing Unix egos" next time you feel like taking a cheap shot at anyone.

  • Paul Monday Thursday, September 30, 2010

    Good Luck Jeff! 20 Years! That is a long time for any company in this industry!

  • Ken Beer Thursday, September 30, 2010

    Jeff -

    Since you asked, here's how I found the quote.

    First, I considered that you may have misquoted the original, so I searched with subsets of the quote, the quote with \* instead of certain terms, using farther instead of further, etc. I looked for the earliest mention of the quote.

    That lead me to a longer, but still unattributed quote here: http://www.tullman.com/wow_detail.asp?wowID=I

    I searched Google Books for the new piece of the quote and found the Jerry Kaplan book. I didn't know if Kaplan himself was quoting someone else, so I searched the quote again - this time along with "Jerry Kaplan"

    That lead me to this: http://www.lionhrtpub.com/orms/orms-12-99/something.html which confirmed the quote to be Kaplan's and from 1994.

    Of course, if you do that last search today, you get this page ;)

  • Jean Dion Thursday, September 30, 2010

    “We can’t solve problems by

    using the same kind of thinking

    we used when we created them.”

    Albert Einstein

    Bottom line do not look back. Move forward...

    Good luck Jeff!

  • Richard Green Thursday, September 30, 2010

    Best of luck Jeff. A big move, a loss for Sun/Oracle, but no doubt a great opportunity and a win for those who you'll be working with. I'm a huge admirer of your work, your talent and your creativity. One of the top talents in our industry, perhaps underrated at times. I hope this will provide a chance for more people to realize your talent.

    All the best,


  • Priya Friday, October 1, 2010

    Wish you best luck Jeff! We will be eager to hear more about the new startup you are creating.

  • Jerry Kaplan Friday, October 1, 2010

    I don't recall stealing that line from someone else, but who the heck knows 15 after years.

    In any case, I'm sure in context it doesn't sound as sage as it does here! ;)

  • Hosam Al Ali Sunday, October 3, 2010

    Best for u

  • system5 Sunday, October 3, 2010

    Hey Jeff, is there any chance that the new stealth mode startup you are joining bears any resemblance to this:


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