JDS on Solaris: "Could be a Boon"

Nice long piece here on internetnews.com on our Java Desktop System (JDS) for the Solaris platform. He are some quotes:

"For those environments already running Solaris and deploying or considering doing so on x86 platforms, JDS for x86 could be a boon," Michael Dortch, a principal business analyst and IT infrastructure management practice leader for IT research firm Robert Frances Group, told internetnews.com.

"Now IT executives can begin allowing advanced users to explore the software features and interoperability with incumbent solutions at little to no risk," Dortch continued. "And with the new detente between Sun and Microsoft, interoperability with Microsoft Office should only get better, giving IT executives more choice and pricing flexibility without requiring Microsoft to cut prices or deal with 'unauthorized' users of its discounted educational versions of Microsoft Office.

Ok, I can live with that. It's not bad. But I don't understand why Dortch then says this:

"Now, if Sun would only drop the other shoe and deliver JDS for Windows on x86, the enterprise desktop software market could become truly interesting while we all wait for Longhorn to ship."

Why would we want to deliver JDS on Windows? Perhaps there is a perfectly good reason. Educate me. I certainly wouldn't buy it or run it, though. And, are we all really waiting for Longhorn to ship? Not me. Long before Longhorn ships I'll be Windows free.

Now on to another analyst in the article:

"Sure, there will be some number of units on which Solaris x86 (v9 or v10) will run, but it will be very small by comparison to what Novell/SUSE, Red Hat and all of the other folks working on Linux can provide," [Jonathan Eunice, president principal analyst and IT advisor at tech research firm Illuminata] said. "Linux is also the x86-enabled flavor of Unix that has mindshare and attention in the OEM community -- those making graphics cards, network adapters, and other hardware gizmos."

"A few people, including Sun folks, may even run JDS on Solaris. But JDS for Linux is the key to broader acceptance," he said.

Just "a few people" to run JDS on the Solaris platform? Well, I guess we will have to show Mr. Eunice a thing or two, right? It's up to us to prove him wrong. My gut, though, says that people aren't really considering the affect OpenSolaris will have on this market. I realize the damn thing is not even launched yet (we're running an OpenSolaris Pilot Program right now, though), but my gut keeps telling me that OpenSolaris will surprise everyone. Including -- and perhaps especially -- Sun.

We'll see. Could be an interesting year. After all, we're not all waiting around for Longhorn to ship, now are we?

I've spent the last few hours downloading both Solaris 9/x86 and the JDS set of patches to get a big weekend of frustration. GAH! All that work to have a barmy error message 2/3 of the way through to say that my /usr volume was full. WTF? Nothing in the documentation, nothing in the software. Can't anyone build a decent script? Can't anything be relocated to /opt? Useless! So much for production-quality software!

Posted by Phil Wiggins on October 25, 2004 at 02:43 AM JST #

This comment is to Phil... I find that the best way to install most Unix machines (at least for personal use) is to just create one large / partition. That way I never have to worry about partitions running out of disk space. If you had done this, then there would be no worries about /usr being full or having to relocate to /opt. Also JDS really doesn't belong under windows. JDS is GNOME + Mozilla + Evolution + other software. This just doesn't fit with Windows. I suppose Sun could release some of the software compiled for Windows, although GAIM, and Mozilla area available for Windows already.

Posted by Azeem Jiva on October 25, 2004 at 04:54 AM JST #

Personally I am using JDS (on linux) now, and really appreciate what Sun has put into the environment. I hope JDS on Solaris will also be a success. However, I have found some usability problem in current JDS in traditional Chinese locale.

For example,

1. the chinese input method provided are not as convenient as the ones M$ provides. The character choosing sequence and the correctness of automatic character choosing in phonetic input method are still not on par with M$ IMEs. It could be difficult for a non-native chinese user to understand the problem. But a native chinese user will notice the difference.

2. When adding a new launcher to GNOME menu. if chinese name is given to the new launcher. GNOME will save it under ~/.gnome2/vfolders/applications with chinese character in file name. This causes GNOME problem parsing the file and GNOME hangs forever when displaying the menu. Currently I sidestep the problem by creating new menu items in English, then adding zh_TW translation after.

These are two major problems I have had with JDS in traditional Chinese locale so far. And I am not aware of there is any feedback channel. If you guys can find any JDS group members to contact me, I am happy to tell them how to reproduce the problem.

Posted by Ivan Wang on October 25, 2004 at 08:12 AM JST #

Just "a few people" to run JDS on the Solaris platform? Well, I guess we will have to show Mr. Eunice a thing or two, right? It's up to us to prove him wrong

I hope you will show him a thing or two. And I am waiting for the next Solaris (Express) Release when JDS is integrated.
Not to mention Open Solaris ... You really did a good job making people interested and excited

Posted by Vlad Grama on October 25, 2004 at 03:41 PM JST #

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