Sun Names OpenSolaris Advisory Board

Sun, Santa Clara, Calif., introduced the five members of the OpenSolaris Community Advisory board in a press conference Monday.

The board members are Al Hopper, engineer consultant, Logical Approach; Rich Teer, independent Solaris consultant and author of "Solaris Systems Programming"; Roy Fielding, chief scientist at Day Software and co-founder and member, the Apache Software Foundation; Simon Phipps, chief technology evangelist, Sun; and Casper Dik, senior staff engineer, Sun.

Hopper and Teer were nominated and elected by the OpenSolaris pilot community, while Sun appointed its own representatives and Fielding, who was chosen because of his role in the greater open-source community.

The mission of the board, which held its first meeting Monday morning, is to draft a proposal for governance of the OpenSolaris community so to "bootstrap" the community so it can eventually govern itself, Phipps said.

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As announced in January, Sun plans to release buildable source code for the Solaris 10 Operating System (OS) under the Common Development and Distribution License (CDDL) before June 30.

Sun already has open sourced Solaris 10's DTrace feature, a dynamic tracing utility, and plans to release much of the source code of the operating system in the full OpenSolaris release.

Fielding said that although many Sun engineers will be OpenSolaris community members by default, the community is not meant to be Sun-centric. Sun has long been criticized for maintaining stewardship over Java technology even though a larger community of developers helped evolve Java over the years.

"Initially there will be a large number of Sun employees within OpenSolaris community as the predominant source of members," Fielding said. "We will give them a voice as part of their simple corporate function and through that method bring out people from outside of Sun from the greater communities ... and give them the opportunity to participate just as Sun employees have."

The advisory board hopes to have a clear outline for community governance by the time the OpenSolaris code is released, members said.

Sun stated its plans to open-source Solaris last June, and OpenSolaris was originally expected to be released by the end of 2004. Plans were stalled however, when a debated raged within the highest levels of Sun about exactly how much of the OS should be open sourced. Sources said that disagreement has since been resolved.