The reason why it's relevant here is that this is not the first time that Oracle has closed-sourced an open-source project bought up from Sun. Oracle seems almost paraconsistent towards open-source in a very interesting way: they seem to view the GPL as a good way to get other companies to help them out without cheating (e.g. OpenJDK), but if they're going to do most of the development in-house anyway it seems they're much more willing to close the source (OpenSolaris, now apparently MySQL).
Could anyone comment on whether there's a larger pattern that I'm missing there? And are there other open-source technologies which were obtained from the Sun buyout which are also in danger which we should know about?
So as much as it pains me to say this, I can totally understand why Oracle have removed those resources because it's flies in the face of their business practices:
1. build something massively complex and counter intuitive to developer for and administrate
2. employ the best salesmen to encourage potential customers that your product is the most powerful and flexible tool out there
3. then charge your confused customers ridiculous support fees because they can't manage the solutions they've just bought
This is why my heart sank when Oracle bought Sun. The two businesses couldn't have a more different software culture (Sun Enterprises were, in my opinion, were one of the best for releasing open, well documented and well designed software)
People who make the purchasing decisions are finally fed up with Oracle's incompetence and utter contempt for the rest of the industry. It's a shame, but I won't really miss Sun when they're finally, mercifully put to death. I hate Oracle for what they did to that company and I wish nothing but ill toward them.
We've happily defined Solaris as deprecated in our environment and are shifting to Linux wherever possible.
By removing it, Oracle can lay claim to more professional services clients.
Or, it could just be incompentance on their end in maintaining the server...
Anyone know of other open-source resource managers out there?
OpenSolaris - OpenIndiana
OpenOffice - LibreOffice
Ksplice - Discontinued support for non Oracle linux
MySql - MariaDB
Disclaimer/Source: I work on the Ksplice team.
And yes, it has always been dual-licensed, but as Monty himself says: "The basic idea for our dual-licensing was this: if you bought a license then we waived the GPL restriction that you have to redistribute your code as GPL. You could change, modify, extend, distribute, and redistribute the copy in any way you wanted (but of course not change the license of the MySQL code). The license was for any version and usage of MySQL, for now and forever." 
Since tax records in Finland are public, you can see how much Monty made from this acquisition (approximately) here:
(Ulf Michael Widenius income for 2008, ~16.8M EUR)
MariaDB is a fork of MySQL started by the founder of MySQL after the Oracle acquisition. This is good news for them because it gives people more reason to use the fork.
Oh, Oracle does. Very, very slowly.
The kernel to OS X/iOS is open source but this is not of any serious utility as far as I know :P
I guarantee that practically every app you use incorporates open source code. Blocking GPL doesn't seem to have hampered the amount of open source code written for the platforms, either. Look how many libs/projects target iOS!
Hell, I consider GPL to be hostile party in that arena. As an open source author, I want people to use my code; that's it. I don't give a damn if they open source their own code base or fork. That's their choice.
I have interacted with more than enough contributors on the "more loose" licenses. Plus, by going GPL you're effectively cutting off contributions from large companies that play in the OSS space (like Google)
I use BSD-2/MIT for my own work so I have to deal with not depending on libraries that are GPL-encumbered, but I still respect the GPL and think it's poor form for a platform to discriminate against it.
From my perspective, GCC was becoming a tangled mess of code due to politically-motivated sabotage by the FSF. Nothing like LLVM bitcode would ever have made it into GCC because it would make GCC too modular, and because the FSF not only supports open-source software but opposes closed-source software, it is against modularity (since someone could potentially distribute closed-source frontend to GCC, if it were modular). This is not mere speculation, people have tried to fix architectural issues in GCC in the past and been shot down for explicitly this reason. You could even say this behavior is hostile.
But this is nothing special. This is just another iteration of the conflict between BSD and GPL.
To be fair the problem with GCC isn't just GPL, v3 or otherwise. Apparently its design is deliberately convoluted to reduce modularity, making it harder for people to use parts rather than the whole, and the architecture also makes dynamic compilation much more difficult to implement than LLVM's tool chain (this was one of the key drivers, rather than the GPL thing).
Same with GCC and GDB. If the GPLv3 is an unacceptable contract to Apple, they have a right not to agree to it. It's not exactly an uncontroversial license.
The fact that many geeks seem to think that the App Store reduces their freedom in any way beggars belief. You have the freedom to use other devices or create new devices that live outside this eco-system: your Grandparents and young children do not.
Get of your high-legged blinkered horse and take a look at the real users of the technology you no-doubt help create. They are exploited, patronised, ridiculed and blamed for merely wanting to share the most important technology of the last 200 years with us. Rather than try to include them we ostracise them and call them idiots.
Once again I was recently reminded why we need the App Store. I spent some of my weekend helping my ex and our 10-year-old son discover why his innocent use of his mothers' work laptop to look at a flash gaming site has caused her PhD thesis to become infected with a virus and all her emails to be sent back to her as containing malware.
Is it my ex's fault for letting our son use her work laptop? Is it his fault for not understanding the dangers of the internet? Is it her fault for not having the correct settings set or the correct anti-virus protection? Is it her department's IT guys' fault for not enforcing a stricter policy?
It's the fault of the fucking arseholes who write malware and deliberately target children and other computing novices by presenting them with ten choices of download button and flashing click-me-now popups that look like system controls.
Either that or it's my fault for not buying my sons an iPad.
Integral part of GPL is the ability for users to change their software, and Apple doesn't allow that (both for the reasons you stated and because... well, a work "monopoly" comes to mind ;).
Some geeks accuse the App Store of eroding our freedoms (and the freedom of free software). I say that truly free software is a luxury that we geeks afford ourselves but make no real effort to share with the less-technical while we intellectually discount the mountainous problem of malicious software that makes non-geeks lives' a misery.
It is the latter that erodes the freedoms our our software not the the App Store.
Weight & measures, environmental health departments, competition commissions, ombudsmen.. etc. all erode some freedoms while protecting others. This is, sadly, a necessary trade-off.
The App Store is openly hostile to freedom, let alone FOSS.
BSD and such allow people the freedom to do almost anything with the code. Close it, leave it open, whatever. BSD grants you the freedom to deny a freedom.
The GPL attempts to preserve that freedom for people other than the current recipient. GPL denies you the freedom to deny a freedom.
The south has even songs about the "good ol' days" where slaves was working in the field. Plantation owners clearly saw the change as oppression, and a limitation on their freedom to operate ones house and businesses as one pleases.
The societies we live in have answered that denying a little personal freedom in order to protect the collective offers more freedom than the one in which that doesn't happen. There's no debate about that. Then, why are we still debating this?
You can say, "that takes away my freedom to restrict others" but that's like saying, "your law takes away my freedom to have slaves"
The GPL doesn't remove freedom except in one way, which is an unintended side-effect: incompatibility.
What the GPL actively restricts is POWER. What you want that the GPL blocks is not freedom, it's power.
> "your law takes away my freedom to have slaves"
Only the creation of more copies which are then distrusted out are considered as redistribution, and to be covered by copyright.
Note that I'm not trying to suggest that I don't find open source software very compelling - just that the trade off doesn't make sense to me.
I'd rather be generally trusting of downstream devs; it pays more dividends in terms of goodwill (and subjectively, contributions).
I'm okay with that: I don't really like the gpl. There is a very vibrant non-gpl OSS community around OS X and iOS.
Besides, the iOS App store is pretty crappy anyways.
While we might bemoan the walled garden model that Apple has picked and most people's seeming readiness to go along with it, you might be surprised at how many people would be interested in a store specifically "curated" towards GPL apps.
The main issue is that the GPL stipulates that the licensor cannot restrict distribution above and beyond the GPL's terms. Because apps must also be distributed under Apple's ToS, the app author would violate the GPL (e.g. due to DRM and regional restrictions).
Basically, this is Apple protecting their asses as well as the developer. Any downstream dev could sue you for using their GPL library (or at least force you off the app store). This is why build of VLC was yanked.
The FSF has a good article on it: http://www.fsf.org/blogs/licensing/more-about-the-app-store-...
I'm curious if a developer can incorporate GPL code in their app and make it available only on Google Play or the Amazon App Store while supplying the relevant source code (or object files) — but not making the unsigned/unprotected APK available to the public.
As I recall, MySQL had a firm requirement for copyright assignment for contributions to MySQL because they dual-licensed it, using both GPL and commercial licenses, and without assignment they wouldn't have the freedom to do that without owning the copyright.
So, yeah, I would expect that they own the copyrights on everything in the man pages and can release them exclusively under closed licenses if they choose.
If the maintainer (whether an individual, for-profit company or a not-for-profit foundation like the ASF or FSF) doesn't hold a copyright to all of the contributed code and documentation, they couldn't release it under an updated license (like the ASL2 or GPL3) or dual-license it for compatibility with other projects without getting clearance from each and every contributor.
If this seems "dodgy", bear in mind a couple of points:
1. You're not "giving up" the rights to your contribution, you are sharing the copyright with the organization. That is, your work is your work and you're still free to do whatever you want with it. You're just giving the organization the same rights, so that work that was once "copyright andyroid" is now (independently) "copyright andyroid" and "copyright whatever-project-you-contributed-to". You don't give up any rights, you're just giving some rights to others.
2. Re-licensing a project doesn't change the license for the already released work. I.e., if Oracle decides to only use a proprietary license for all future MySQL releases, that doesn't post-facto change the license on the previous releases. You (or anyone else) remain free to take the last GPL'ed version and run with it (under the terms of the license under which it was released). As crappy as that re-licensing decision might be, it really only impacts the stuff you use from them or contribute to them after the re-licensing occurs.
Sorry, but - as a general rule, this is false, at least in common law jurisdictions. Copyright is a transferable property right. If I assign copyright on a work to you, I don't have it any more. (That's a bit of a simplification, ignoring moral rights and glossing over more complex situations like if we're joint authors, but the gist is true).
Now, the FSF agreement (and most other CLAs) has a 'grant-back' clause: after you assign them your copyright, they grant to you a wide perpetual licence to use, copy, relicense, etc. etc. the software. So you can still do most of what you could do before.
But that's a function of that clause, not something inherent in assigning copyright.
 Most -- but not all. There's one thing that having the copyright lets you do that a licence never can, and that's enforce it against third parties. You can't sue someone for breach of your copyright after you've signed it away, only the copyright owner can, and that ain't you any more.
> Sorry, but - as a general rule, this is false, at least in common law jurisdictions.
It can work either way: It depends on the particular Contributor License Agreement being used, and what it says.
Some actually transfer copyright, some just grant the project entity a perpetual non-exclusive license to all rights.
IMHO, this is a huge advantage: it guarantees that the maintainer of the project can't run off and so something crazy. The linux kernel allows every author to retain copyright, and there's some security in that: since it is basically impossible to get clearance from even the most significant subset of copyright holders in the kernel, it will forever be GPLv2.
Look at it this way: if Torvalds were evil, he could require everybody to assign him copyright, and then take everybody's work and let corporations pay him to allow them to use it closed-source enviorments. Or even un-GPL the whole thing and sell it to somebody. (IANAL, obviously - not sure about that last one)
Point is, there is security in nobody having controlling ownership of a project,
I'm not sure if it would hold in court, but it's fairly common for GPL projects to include "or later", specifically for that reason.
or dual-license it for compatibility with other projects without getting clearance from each and every contributor.
If you're releasing under a non-copyleft license, it shouldn't be needed, and if you're releasing under the GPL, that's (arguably) a feature, not a bug ;)
When I refer to "the documentation" I'm mostly talking about the web docs at dev.mysql.com, which are are far more important than the man pages.
If the man pages are covered by the GPL'd may be a thorny issue. The GPL is not generally applied to documentation.
With an MIT or BSD licensed work, you can add more restrictive conditions, e.g. make a derived work proprietary, or add a "noncommercial use only" clause to your derived work, or whatever else you want. But with a GPL-licensed work, you cannot add additional conditions to the derived work, i.e. you must give all downstream reusers the same permissions you received. That's what's sometimes referred to as the "viral" property.
Unless, as here, you are the owner of the copyrights, in which case you can apply any license you want to the work.
Not being able to relicense under a license not acceptable to the authors of the particular copyleft license at issue is a main element of copyleft, but copyleft licenses often allow redistributing under more restrictive licenses that remain acceptable to the copyleft license author (e.g., the FSF encourages the use of "or any later version" language in GPL licenses, and GPLv3 is in many respects more restrictive than GPLv2; further, GPLv3 allows relicensing with specified kinds of additional terms that may in some ways be more restrictive.)
If you consider what developers are allowed to do with a piece of software, the main element of copyleft is actually not being able to relicense under a less restrictive license on the spectrum of FOSS licenses. The least restrictive "license" of all is no license, no copyright, i.e. public domain (in the US).
Because you can convert MIT/BSD to a closed source license, but you cannot convert GPL to a closed source license, in this sense the GPL is more restrictive than MIT/BSD. You can convert MIT/BSD to GPL (less to more) but not GPL to MIT/BSD (more to less).
I understand that closed source licenses are the most restrictive of all, this is just an alternative perspective on software freedom with regard to developers.
Speaking of beasts of burden, I've been atop my elephant (Postgres) for about 3+ years now and I feel it's harder and harder to deal with idiosyncrasies of MySQL.
MariaDB is better, much better. And at work, when we do have clients already on InnoDB, the first choice for upgrades is to move them off MySQL onto MariaDB. All fresh work starts with Postgres. Being BSD licensed, docs and all, it's the least painful legally and technically.
Thankfully Maria is such a nice clean replacement.
However, by blatantly damaging the product, more and more users moved (and continue to move) to better alternatives. Thus damaging the company's reputation.
However, MySQL is hardly a competitor to Oracle. Oracle 11g is meant for use at completely different type of company. I don't get it.
Time to donate to Apache. Sound familiar?
I believe that in 80-90+% of the cases where Oracle is deployed, it is only still being used because business executives are out of touch and don't want to admit that the massive investments they committed their companies to are no longer required.
Then you're simply not an enterprise level developer. Oracle is, to this day, one of the most powerful databases out there. Granted, they have absolutely awful interface tools (which is why most people are reduced to using a buggy 3rd party app to do common DB work on Oracle), but the Database itself is world class. MySQL isn't really a competitor. It competes better with things like SQLight.
My experience with Oracle's query optimization was that it was non-intuitive to configure to work correctly especially with the way that the optimizer statistics config works.
MySQL will do quite useful query optimization (for joins) if you have appropriate indexes. So I think that in 80% of cases that is what matters in both Oracle and MySQL -- creating appropriate indexes.
Honestly I don't think you know what MySQL is capable of.
Which is pretty silly, because MySQL doesn't really hold a candle to Oracle's RDBMS.
There is another metric where MySQL shines: Ease of installation. On any server I come across, I can install and startup a new MySQL/MariaDB instance by just asking for `apt-get install mysql`, or whichever package manager my distribution is using. You can't install Oracle in a single command like that. I'm not aware of any distributions that carry Oracle in their repositories, making it a pain to update and manage.
What they can't do is revoke the existing GPL licenses so you can still develop and modify the old docs.
Having said that this is Oracle and you should probably just run for the hills (MariaDB) before Oracle make it hard to make it fully compatible with future version of MySQL by doing something else.
"This documentation is NOT distributed under a GPL license."
Is it a really a drop-in replacement? Any gotchas I need to be aware off? How does MariaDB compare with MySQL performance and memory wise? Did anyone face any issues with replication?
Thank you in advance.
Oracle MySQL 5.6 has a number of interesting new features and performance improvements that I don't believe have yet made it into either XtraDB or MariaDB.
So if you're talking about MySQL 5.5, MariaDB and XtraDB are really drop in replacements, they're all based on the same codebase, and hardly anything differs except the InnoDB engine. MariaDB and XtraDB have as few experimental InnoDB bug-fixes and performance tweaks that vanilla 5.5 does not.
Slower last time I tested with my app on my HW. But you should test now with your app now on your HW of course to be sure :)
What I have heard is if you have lots of CPUs MariaDB doesn't scale up as well. If you scale out, that might not matter.
(I know Mac OS has all sorts of proprietary VM systems like parallels and so on, but I'm a poor student to just needs to run basic Linux boxes for development purposes, not windows for games.)
http://www.xenproject.org/ is nice too
>This software and related documentation are provided under a license agreement containing restrictions on use and disclosure and are protected by intellectual property laws. Except as expressly permitted in your license agreement or allowed by law, you may not use, copy, reproduce, translate, broadcast, modify, license, transmit, distribute, exhibit, perform, publish, or display any part, in any form, or by any means. Reverse engineering, disassembly, or decompilation of this software, unless required by law for interoperability, is prohibited.
I'm not sure how much clearer they could be that it's not a free license.
How do you know that specific license isn't the GPL?
That blurb restates common law. It does not interfere with the specific license that the documentation was covered under, it's just there to remind people.
That represents a very good effort to take an open project and keep it open. Two thumbs up for the community. Now, if we can just talk about silently munging data instead of giving proper errors...
Oracle, your engineers know exactly what will happen. Why don't you?
I think Oracle knows what they're doing. Oracle likes paying customers and I suspect that they don't make much, if anything, on MySQL users. I've been using MySQL for years and I've never knowingly paid Oracle a dime.
I know that this is not a popular opinion, but I disagree with the philosophy behind the GPL. While I think that sharing is fine (and for that there are the BSD and MIT licenses, among many others), I believe that it is very often better for both developers (and users) if users pay for the software they use. (And yes, I have heard the pro-GPL argument about how you can charge for support, but I know that's bogus in practice.)
I am not saying the GPL should be outlawed or anything like that. I'm just saying that it's not a moral ideal (the actual moral ideal is you making a sustainable living off of the code you write), and it's practically speaking a bad idea in many cases.
Nonsensical, inconsistent opinions aren't very popular, you're right. There is no reason to like BSD/MIT because they allow "sharing" but dislike the GPL because people should pay for software, except that one allows you to personally profit from the work of others without giving back, and the other does not.
Meanwhile, IBM makes billions in "bogus" revenue based on Linux solutions, and Red Hat had $1.3 billion in "bogus" revenue last year.