Wednesday Feb 17, 2010

OpenOffice.org and Solaris 10 listed in eWEEK's Top 25 Technologies Of The Decade

eWEEK names 25 products, applications and technologies of the last decade that have changed the way we work, play and live.

Among them: OpenOffice.org and Solaris 10.


Friday Aug 14, 2009

Microsoft using Sun Ray Thin Clients

I just stumbled over this interesting article "Microsoft Enterprise Engineering Center Chooses Sun Ray Thin Clients" and wanted to share it with you, because I really like Sun Ray environments.

We also make heavy use of Sun Ray systems in our OpenOffice.org Team here in Hamburg.

All productivity software is maintained centrally on Sun Ray servers, running Solaris.Other systems are "only" needed for OpenOffice.org QA and Development tasks.

QA members mainly use visualization to easily access all different kind of operating systems for testing our products. Developers connect to different kind of operating systems running on different physical machines via RDP or ssh and X11, because you would notice differences in performance when compiling large projects like OOo in virtual machines. But virtual machines are also sometimes very handy for developers, when it comes to debugging issues on some ancient operating system, or when an issue only occurs with certain configurations/languages.

Using such an environment, it doesn't matter where you work. At home, in the office, in some other Sun office around the world. Your session will travel with you, it doesn't matter where you log on. No PCs in the office, no noise.

I really like it...

Monday Jun 18, 2007

The problem with shipping 3rd party libraries with your product

The latest releases of StarOffice and OpenOffice.org contain 2 security fixes.

Some information about this can be found in the Sun Alerts 102917 and  102967.

102967 reminds me that we should have a closer look on what 3rd party libraries we ship with the next major versions.

There are 3 reasons for shipping these libraries with SO/OOo, instead of making them a system requirement:

1) It's convenient for the user. Just download and install the productivity suite, don't care about additional downloads and installations.

2) Modified versions. In some cases SO/OOo ship modified versions of 3rd party libraries, because we made some bug fixes which are not available in the official versions from that library right now.

3) No problems with ABI compatibility. Sometimes 3rd party libraries change in a way that they become incompatible with current versions of SO/OOo. Sometimes even in a way that the users doesn't recognize it immediately (application still starts), but some things behave differently (and wrong).
This happens for example when introducing new enum values in the middle of existing values. An example for this can be found in the FreeType library, which was responsible for one of the security vulnerabilities.

 
But in general, there should only be one copy of each library on a system, if possible. Programs shouldn't install "private copies".

 
Funny. I was just searching for some public documentation about our ARC Process, because ARC also checks for private copies, when stumbling over a very recent OpenSolaris blog from a colleague.

Item #5 is exactly what we are talking about here...

 


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Malte Timmermann

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