Tuesday Nov 04, 2008


Nice to see the code contribution list growing to 300 integrations. Actually, this is only the code contributions to a couple of consolidations, but nevertheless. It's a nice round number. Other contributions are coming in via various projects, but we don't keep track of them in any centralized way. Here's how to participate and contribute. Many more methods of contributing coming.

Wednesday Aug 06, 2008

OpenSolaris Sponsor Program Kicks it Up

Cool to see some serious movement here in the request sponsor program to get more community code integrated into the main OpenSolaris repository inside Sun. Excellent. The number of people waiting for sponsors is way down, the number of integrations is up, and the number of sponsors assigned to new contributions is way up. The sponsor program has always been a temporary solution for us to take code from non-Sun developers until we could get the infrastructure outside (coming very soon now), and it's lived well beyond its years. However, it's also done a pretty fine job given the circumstances, and those who have been involved deserve a great deal of thanks for their patience and persistence. Discussions taking place on request-sponsor.

Friday Dec 28, 2007

India and OpenSolaris Request Sponsor

Have you noticed the increase in activity on the request-sponsor list (forum here, list archives here) lately? Have you also noticed the distinct lack of flames on that list and the clear professionalism? And have you noticed all the names from India recently as well? University Campus Ambassadors are starting to contribute. The India OpenSolaris community is getting involved. Some of them multiple times, too. The Sun India engineering team is actively involved, of course, and they are building a developer community based on contributing in a variety of ways -- including code. When I was at FOSS.IN, I had the chance to see the India OpenSolaris community pounding away on OpenSolaris bugs for hours and hours. I guess it's continuing. Very cool. I have no doubt whatsoever that India will be a top contributing country to OpenSolaris.

Code contributors here. oss-bite-size bugs here. Get involved here. All of my FOSS.IN stuff here.

Thursday Nov 29, 2007


We just broke 201 code contributions via the request-sponsor program. Cool. That makes over 400 code contributions offered to OpenSolaris since launch (more, actually, when you go into individual projects). 101 are in the queue with sponsors assigned and 38 are waiting for sponsors. Ok, so it`s a bit of a backlog, but we`ll get there.

Monday Oct 08, 2007

The Clean Room

James C. McPherson talks about his work with Jason King "to integrate his clean-room re-implementation of libdisasm for SPARC" -- Opening up OpenSolaris just a little bit more. I really like how James concluded his post: "I expect that there will be a few follow up putbacks as people find edge cases, but the great thing about this putback is that \*you\* can make those changes if you want. You don't have to depend on Sun doing it for you. Thank you Jason -- you've helped make OpenSolaris more open."

Cool. That's also the first piece of encumbered code replaced by a contributor on OpenSolaris, and that brings us to 187 putbacks via the request-sponsor program. Very nice.

Wednesday Sep 12, 2007

Request Sponsor

The open question: "The Open Solaris community has more than 70,000 members, most of whom are users, Phipps said. 'There are about 750 committers right now, and almost all of them are within Sun. We haven’t quite finished the external version control system [for the community]. So the situation is a bit more complicated on OpenSolaris right now. To make a commit, you currently need an internal sponsor.' That will change, Phipps said, when the version control system goes outside Sun's firewall.'" -- Sean Gallagher, Government Computer News

By "internal sponsor" Simon is referring to the OpenSolaris Request Sponsor Program: info here, list here, forum here, tracking tables here.

Initially, the program was created by John Beck and managed by Bonnie Corwin to support the OS/Net consolidation, but it's been expanding to include other consolidations as well. It's a manual and interim step for OpenSolaris to enable us to take code contributions, educate external community members about internal development processes, and create new engineering relationships on opensolaris.org. The program was also necessary since it was impossible to open all the source code and all development tools and all development precesses all at once. The opening of Solaris quite literally has had to be a phased approach.

The main OpenSolaris kernel source code management gate is still internal to Sun, but that will move across the firewall after first moving off of Teamware and on to Mercurial. The website already supports Mercurial as well as Subversion, and projects are already using both. See the SCM Migration Project and the SCM section of the Tools Community for more details.

Request Sponsor is a simple process, really. Community members offer code, and Sun engineers work with those contributors on testing, code reviews, and ARC cases and then they do the final integrations. Currently, there are 26 sponsor requests waiting for engineering assignments, 92 in progress with sponsors assigned, and 181 final integrations. All the community members and sponsors and the data involved is tracked in a table on the site, including the ARC cases. Many of the putbacks have been bug fixes, but many are substantial fixes and many include substantial new contributions -- including ksh93 and the first putbacks form the Intel project.

The Request Sponsor Program will continue even after the main gate moves external, though, since the opening of these development tools will take time, and there will still be some internal dependencies initially (such as the RTI tool and bug database). In fact, at least initially, the Request Sponsor Program could well evolve into a mentor program.

For me the best thing about the Request Sponsor Program is that it's been a quiet performer all along underneath all the noise around OpenSolaris. The list is low traffic. There are no flames. And the people are doing the best they can with the tools that they have. Sure, things get backed up from time to time, but the bottom line is that code is being offered and it's being integrated. And it's great to see some press about it.

Sunday May 28, 2006

No Trouble for Tribbles

Peter Tribble comments about his experiences contributing code to OpenSolaris via the request-sponsor program:

This is great. It's great that Sun -- as an organization -- gives external contributors like myself the opportunity to put changes into Solaris. It's great that individuals within Sun (thanks Dave!) take on the time and effort required to integrate the changes into the codebase.

Thanks for the kind thoughts, Peter. You and the other code contributors have earned your way, and we expect this trend to continue and hopefully increase.


Friday May 26, 2006


Code contributions keep coming in pretty consistently to OpenSolaris. We're up to 69 non-Sun putbacks now via the request-sponsor program. Six of the latest fixes have been integrated into the Install Consolidation, which is great because we are starting to get more non-ON code. There are 41 fixes in the queue with sponsors and 25 more waiting for sponsors since my last post.



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