Tuesday, January 25, 2011

About the Hudson debacle

There are some big discussions about forking Hudson. Oracle's latest response seems to have triggered this reply from Hudson's main developer Kohsuke, now hired by CloudBees.

Personally, I don't see all that much negativity in the Oracle message. Actually, it seems very well balanced.

One thing I agree entirely: there is no such thing as a project "renaming". We are talking about a fork. Even if the Jenkins fork becomes the one with the biggest market share, it's still a fork.

This reminds me of the EGCS fork of the GCC which became so good it actually became the next 'official' GCC release. There is still a chance this might happen for Hudson/Jenkins so I don't see why Kohsuke seems so eager to burn all the bridges with Oracle.

I am also part of the "community", using Hudson since before it was so fashionable, and I don't see why should I be so enraged about all this? I guess I am too cynical not to notice that there are two companies involved: CloudBees and Oracle and only one of these two makes money almost exclusively from Hudson-based services. I think there's a natural conflict when for-profit companies make money from open-source software -- they'll always want to keep some proprietary "added value".

What I did understand is that Oracle has some fear of using non-Oracle infrastructure (github, etc) which seems to annoy some of the developers. But, other than that, I don't understand the need to fork the project.

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