SysAdmin's Journey

Solaris Should Have a Solaris-NG Fork!

While reading over my RSS feed, I came across Chris Siebenmann’s post titled “A thesis: Sun should fork Solaris”. It’s one of those posts that brings up an idea that’s so simple, it’s brilliant. I’ve been a Linux user since Red Hat 5.2 was released somewhere around 10 years ago. I’ve been working with Solaris for about 2 years now, but where I was excited to learn Linux, I must admit that I dread learning Solaris. Why? It feels old and monolithic to me. I love ZFS, and I’m sure if I took the time to learn DTrace I would come to love that too. But why in the hell can I not do a ‘tar -czvf my.tar.gz .’ without installing an extra package? Where is the ‘apt-get upgrade’ or the ‘yum update’? Of course I know the answer - it’s to keep binary compatability with previous releases. Joerg Moellenkamp’s article over at c0t0d0s0 does a great job at describing why. Some people would say, why not use OpenSolaris? The simple answer, stability. If I wanted something that was under active development with bleeding edge packages, I would just use Linux. Bottom line, I want my cake, and I want to eat it too. I want the convenience and ease of maintenance of Linux, but with the advanced features, stability, and scalability that comes with Solaris 10. Heck, I’ve even learned to love Sparc. Just give me that damn -z option to tar!!! In all seriousness, what Chris refers to would make me quite happy, and would like keep the legacy customers happy as well. Heck, I’ll even let them use the name Solaris-NG free of charge saving millions of money on marketing salaries. What are your thoughts?