I previously highlighted the fate of OpenSSO – a test case for Oracle and a living experiment for Open Source – possibly allowing us to understand how or whether a project really can outlive it’s corporate backer.
Well, it seems that another piece of the Sun OSS portfolio has floated adrift from the Oracle mother-ship. Some of the key developers have left / are leaving Oracle and have joined Rackspace. With this Rackspace essentially becomes the guardian of one of the major development branches of MySQL. It would be interesting to know what Oracle would price their MySQL assets at today.
One of the benefits we talk about with Open Source is that the license and collaborative nature can offer some protection for users should the main supporter disappear. Rarely has this been put to test but here’s an example that came across in my feeds today. OpenSSO was a Sun project that Oracle seemingly killed last week as part of their assimilation / refactoring process. In less than a week, it seems there’s already a commercial organization twilling support the code-base. From ForgeRock’s web page :
ForgeRock OpenAM is the market leading open source Authentication, Authorization, Entitlement and Federation product. ForgeRock is providing the community with a new home for Sun Microsystems’ OpenSSO product.
Good luck to ForgeRock – I recognize quite a few of the names as fellow Sun / iPlanet / Netscape Alumni. It will be interesting to see how this plays out – it got ugly the last time something like this happened.