Information Week’s Top 10 Open Source Stories of 2008

From this article:

Overall, this article is a worthwhile recap of 2008 from an OSS point-of-view, and I agree with the majority of their picks for “top 10”.  However, I heartily disagree with the premise of “2. Sun’s Slow Spiraling Towards Nova”.  Personally, I think Sun is in a pretty good position.  They bought MySQL, own, have open sourced both Java and Solaris, and have released the first usable version of OpenSolaris, version 8.11.  This, to say nothing of the fact that they have some very compelling server options on the market.  I’ll delve into this in more detail shortly, but the summary is that, if you get the right discounts, you can get a very nice 1U 8 core Sun server with 16GB of RAM for about $3k.

On a related note, I also disagree with calling Ubuntu 8.10 and Fedora 10 important releases.  Rather, the view from my neck of the woods is that Cannonical’s second LTS release, Ubuntu “Hardy” 8.04.1 and Sun’s aforementioned OpenSolaris 8.11 are more noteworthy releases.

Hardy laid the groundwork for the minor tweaks in 8.10, is patched for longer, has a better chance of being used in both desktop and enterprise, and is a more polished release than 8.10, at least in my experience.

As for OpenSolaris 8.11, it is the first Solaris release to include ZFS out of the box, and offers a very Linux-like user experience, from their “Network Auto-Magic” to the vastly improved package manager.  This, the first ever end-user-usable release of Solaris that I have ever seen, was met with the odd and unexpected announcement of an OEM deal with Toshiba that will see OpenSolaris on select Toshiba laptops for the first time ever.  This is a very big deal for both Sun and the broader Open Source community.

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