OpenSolaris Moves to XWiki

We finally moved to XWiki last night. I sent the opening announcement out around 4:15 my time this morning. It was a long day. I have been sick for a couple of weeks, so that marathon last night didn't help things much. But we went out and we didn't blow up. Cool. This is Phase 2 of the website transition. Phase 1 was the development and deployment of the Auth user management system and the merging of the tonic and poll databases all around a governance structure. Among other things. And now this Phase 2 represents the customization of XWiki and its integration with Auth and the migration and translation of the old tonic website content into XWiki. Among other things. The sequence is actually pretty substantial.

The team working on this thing yesterday was spread out all over the world -- Boston, Colorado Springs, San Francisco, Manchester, and Tokyo. Some of us were up at 4 in the morning, while others stayed up till 5 in the morning the next day. The final migration took somewhat longer than expected because we had to fix critical issues (networking, performance, redirects, etc) as we went live while under real loads for the first time. We had done 31 migrations in 3 months to give ourselves and everyone in the community enough time to prepare, but going live always draws new elements to deal with. It turned out ok, though. And the performance has been very good so far (and this will improve as we further optimize the application). Anyway, not bad for a v1 attempt. And that's exactly what this is. A start.

But it feels good to be living in one world now, instead of having to go back and forth between vastly different website architectures resolving differences between the two -- all while maintaining current operations on an old site that was quite literally at the breaking point. That last part was a very big deal in this gig, and far too many people still don't realize that that was hanging over our heads the entire time. Also, the process of migrating and translating content was dicey, and working those issues ate a pile of time out of the schedule. Now, of course, we still have many bugs to fix and features to add. There is graphics work and style sheet clean up to do. Embedded media to implement. Printing issues to solve. Editor bugs to fix. Content to clean. We are far from complete. And we have to get XWiki on a regular upgrade schedule, so we don't let things lag. Fortunately, there is an active XWiki community out there, and we are now part of that effort. It will be good to finally focus on morning forward on new infrastructure, whereas we couldn't go anywhere on the old platform. That's why this was a move, not an upgrade

Special thanks to the engineering team for pulling this off and to Chris Phelan for leading the entire XWiki phase. Excellent job. We now have a new community development tool to build upon. And the list of community-development tools is growing. Thank you.

More about Phase 3 of the website transition project very soon.


One of the things I miss is the blog agregator (

Also, what does the site run on? Solaris 10? PHP? JSP? Cluster? What's the backend database?

What powers, and how?

Posted by UX-admin on October 27, 2009 at 03:49 PM JST #

@UX-admin: there are a number of things we need to do post-migration, blog aggregation is one of them.

As for what OSO runs on, everything runs Nevada builds of various vintage, and we are starting to move towards deploying on OpenSolaris. We make heavy use of features such as Zones, ZFS and SMF. The applications are predominantly J2EE, with newer ones using the Stripes framework ( The database behind the old portal and XWiki is MySQL, for other applications we've been using Apache Derby.

Posted by Alan Burlison on October 27, 2009 at 09:17 PM JST #

[Trackback] This post was mentioned on Twitter by jimgris: OpenSolaris is now on XWiki. We are just getting started. Much work to do.

Posted by uberVU - social comments on October 27, 2009 at 10:32 PM JST #

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