[OpenIndiana-discuss] Help with website

Richard L. Hamilton rlhamil at smart.net
Tue Oct 11 01:31:47 UTC 2011

On Oct 10, 2011, at 9:14 PM, Gregory Youngblood wrote:

> On Oct 10, 2011, at 5:42 PM, Christopher Chan wrote:
>> On Tuesday, October 11, 2011 08:32 AM, Dan Swartzendruber wrote:
>>> Quite true.  At this point, though, the admin space is the issue.
>> I come from a Linux background with my experience being done on Redhat Linux, Fedora, Centos and Ubuntu. I have also worked on FreeBSD and OpenBSD. I do not see a problem in the admin space. You can get various GNU tools on OpenIndiana. 
> And it's been that way for a very long time. I remember one of my early tasks was to get gnu tools on solaris (2.4? 2.5?) server where it was then nfs exported to all the other servers and available somewhere like /usr/local (maybe it was /usr/local/gnu?). This was right as it was released and sunfreeware didn't yet have all the stuff readily available for download. I believe this was 97 or 98 time frame.
> I ended building packages for just about all the gnu (and several non-gnu, but common) tools so they were proper solaris "packages" to boot. The end result, all of our servers had the gnu tools. Which were default depended on your path. 
> I think the perceived problem in the admin space depends on the depth of experience of the admin too. Admins that only know one (or maybe, MAYBE 2) linux distribution(s) become so entrenched in their distro of choice they have a hard time seeing any other options (including other Linux options). The more well rounded admins don't have such a problem.
> I can tell you of one friend that is a well rounded Linux guy and his impression of OpenSolaris and OpenIndiana: Linux in 95. His personal beef was with the extremely limited hardware support. He spent quite a bit of time trying to get just the right sata card and chipset and still had problems with getting things working that he finally gave up. This was less than a year ago too.
> The biggest issues with getting Linux or others to check out and use OI isn't email vs. forums, gnu or not user space tools, etc., it's driver support and documentation, and often the attitude they seem to frequently get when they come looking for help.

Hardware? I think the community could work on that.  BSD license is compatible, so no issue there; and some types of drivers will port from BSD without too huge a headache (there being more similarities than with Linux, from which porting drivers would be harder even if there were no license incompatibility).  A courtesy would be to keep BSD derived code under BSD license…maybe even to BSD license new community developed drivers, which might build a more congenial relationship with that crowd (since they could use them with less hassle than if a CDDL license were used, not that that would always be a problem for them).

Documentation?  Ok, docs.sun.com is gone, and the new Oracle site sux, but there is more documentation on the Solaris lineage than most people will ever get around to reading.  Now, perhaps it's not arranged ideally for ease of use, that's a case that could be made.  Some introductory material and a page of links could be overlaid on it to make it more accessible.

Attitude?  A questioner that's humble and willing to learn shouldn't get an attitude; hopefully they won't.  One that has an entitlement mentality will perhaps not be so fortunate.  If they have questions and I have answers, I've got something they want - they need me more than I need them.  That's just a fact.  If they're following the Usenet tradition (don't expect that your failure to read the FAQ is someone else's problem), they're entitled to a presumption of courtesy.  Otherwise, well, I'm not paid for customer service in the usual sense, and there's a reason for that - I'd starve.  The customer is frequently _wrong_, and if I'd say it behind their back, I'd say it to their face, too.  They may not like that, but at least they know that I'm not feeding them a line.

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