OSDL and their stance on BSD

Linh Pham question+advocacy at closedsrc.org
Thu Apr 24 09:14:32 PDT 2003

After hearing the name, Open Source Development Lab (OSDL), come up a
couple of times, I decided to check them out to see who they are and
what they are doing to help out the general Open Source community
(including BSD). Well, according to the front page of their website

OSDL is dedicated to providing Open Source developers with resources and
guidance to build data center and carrier grade enhancements into Linux
and its Open Source software stack, enabling it to become the leading
UNIX-like Operating System for e-Business deployment and development.

Okay, so it looks like they not only provide some "resources" to further
Linux and "it's" Open Source software for enterprise networks. They have
no mention of BSD or anything, until you hit the FAQ
[http://www.osdl.org/faq.html]. One of their FAQ directly talks about

Why don't you work on BSD?

For a variety of reasons, Linux has achieved far broader acceptance in
the marketplace and is the open source operating system that has the
greatest potential for acceptance in the enterprise. 

So it seems that an "Open Source" group is working on improving "Open
Source" software only to further Linux and not other Open Source
operating systems like FreeBSD. At this point, I decided to send an
e-mail to info at osdl.org. Instead of dumping the entire thread into this
message, I have a cleaned up version of the thread available at:


The thread consists of several replies from Timothy Witham, the Lab
Director of OSDL and replies that I sent back.

It seems that Timothy's view is that if BSD wants the same resources and
the same type of backing, it needs to do it themselves, even though
there is an "Open Source Development Lab" that, one would think, should
encompass as many Open Source platforms as possible.

To me, it seems that it's another group using the "Open Source" mark to
garner the attention of the media and companies, yet only provide
assistance in building up Open Source software only for Linux.

What do you guys think and what action should we take?

Linh Pham                                question+advocacy at closedsrc.org
Webmaster and FreeBSD Geek                          http://closedsrc.org
Apprentice Manager Editor and Writer           http://www.daemonnews.org
Courage: The things I do for love | And So Western Civilization Crumbles
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