Sun's Phipps: Novell Has a Big Problem
Novell CEO Ron Hovsepian thinks Sun Microsystemsí Solaris and OpenSolaris operating systems are going nowhere. This article links to an interview with Simon Phipps, chief open source officer at Sun, outlining his response to the harsh commentary from Hovsepian.†
Last week in my "Not Just Linux" blog, I pointed to a Linux Foundation podcast in which Novell CEO Ron Hovsepian sharply criticized Sun MicrosystemsĎ open source strategy and questioned the viability of the Solaris operating system. Not surprisingly, Sun took issue with his statements, as is evidenced by Patrick Finch's blog post on the subject.
To get Sun's side, I talked to the company's chief open source officer, Simon Phipps, on Wednesday. He certainly didn't pull any punches. In response to Hovsepianís suggestion that Sunís open source strategy ó balancing open source and commercial interests ó isnít right, Phipps says:
"Novellís got a big problem. What theyíre doing is trying to sell open source software as if it was proprietary software. The comment that Mr. Hovsepian made seems to be projecting Novellís malaise onto Sun, but we donít have that malaise. We ship a completely free piece of software that anyone can download and use without any restrictions."
And as for the OpenSolaris community contract, Hovsepian suggested that developers who even look at the source code are somehow tainted so that they cannot go back and look at Linux. Phipps, of course, does not agree:
"Thatís complete and utter rubbish. I donít know where heís getting it from, but itís so untrue as to almost be actionableÖ [T]his isnít the first time Mr. Hovsepian has made an ill-informed and misleading attack on OpenSolaris. Maybe itís that he hasnít got anyone else to attack because Novell is such an unpopular company in the open source movement."
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Lora covers the emergence of open software and standards in IT Business Edge's Leveraging Open Source weekly report. Read her blog, Open for Business, to glean open source solutions for real cost-savings and efficiency.