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Cloud Open Source News

Does OpenStack Need a Linus Torvalds? 152

Posted by samzenpus
from the what's-in-a-name? dept.
BButlerNWW writes in with a story that speculates about the need for a marquee name to head OpenStack. "OpenStack has been dubbed by some enthusiasts as the Linux of the cloud — an open source operating system for public or private clouds. But there's one stark difference between the two projects: OpenStack doesn't have a Linus Torvalds, the eccentric, outspoken, never-afraid-to-say-what-he-thinks leader of the Linux world. Torvalds personifies Linux in many ways. OpenStack doesn't have that one central figure right now. The question is: Does OpenStack need it? Some would argue yes. Torvalds, because of the weight he holds in the project, calls the shots about how Linux is run, what goes in, what stays out of the code, and he's not afraid to express his opinions. He provides not only internal guidance for the project, but also an exterior cheerleading role. Others would say OpenStack does not need a Torvalds of its own. The project is meant to be an open source meritocracy, where members are judged based on their code contributions to the project. OpenStack has been fighting an image that the project is just full of corporate interests, which is part of the reason Rackspace ceded official control of the project to the OpenStack Foundation recently."
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Does OpenStack Need a Linus Torvalds?

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  • by hyades1 (1149581) <hyades1@hotmail.com> on Thursday October 25, 2012 @02:17AM (#41761715)

    It could be argued that one of the main reasons why Linux has utterly failed as an operating system for average people on average computers is Linus Torvalds. It has certainly been successful in other areas, but as a "just works" freeware replacement for Windows, it's been a bust.

    Maybe it would be best if Open Stack stays relatively free of one person's influence, or one clique's interest, for that matter.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      It could be argued that one of the main reasons why Linux has utterly failed as an operating system for average people on average computers is Linus Torvalds. It has certainly been successful in other areas, but as a "just works" freeware replacement for Windows, it's been a bust.

      GNU/Linux on the desktop is easier to use than Microsoft Windows and it "just works" 99% of the time for the majority of people currently running Microsoft Windows. On my notebook computer I installed Ubuntu Linux 12.04 LTS during the early part of the summer (2012) and use it for sending/receiving email, browsing the web, streaming audio and/or video and music, editing documents, managing photographic collections, editing photographs and videos, and a variety of other tasks.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday October 25, 2012 @03:19AM (#41761909)

        GNU/Linux on the desktop is easier to use than Microsoft Windows and it "just works" 99% of the time for the majority of people currently running Microsoft Windows.

        Ubuntu... So. Many. Tiny. Bugs. So many insignificant little bugs, like I click on the volume icon and when I move my mouse to the slider, it still thinks I'm holding the button down. Like I can't change file associations intuitively. The interface allows it ("always open using this program") but it doesn't work. Every time I reboot, I set Chrome as my default browser. Ruby 1.8 by default while other developers are screaming at me for not having upgraded to 1.9. The GUI changes more often than I change my underwear. One year it's classic Gnome, the next it's Unity, the next Unity's out again. If I open a certain application (haven't exactly figured out which one, I've narrowed it down to 3 now) the Skype notifications don't appear anymore in the bottom-right corner of the screen (instead, the pixels in the rectangle that should contain the notification are "frozen" for a few moments until the notification rectangle disappears).

        I don't know about other distributions, but Ubuntu still needs some polishing until it's ready to ship to intermediate users. I'm saying intermediate because beginners won't notice these small bugs and experts will fix them themselves.

        • by ls671 (1122017)

          Hehe, give them a chance ;-)

          Slackware here since 1.2.3. I recently installed Ubuntu on my girlfriend's laptop because Windows got corrupted and she lost the install CD. I was amazed how it behaved. To test further, I installed it on my own laptop with automatic "a la windows" updates set to run everyday and install without any impact analysis on my side, just like I would do it for my personal windows laptop.

          Overall, I think it is up to par with Windows. I am amazed how things have progressed. My last linu

        • by doom (14564)

          The GUI changes more often than I change my underwear.

          Okay. You're a real geek.

        • by rijrunner (263757)

          OK.. What does Linus have to do with Ubuntu's choice of default browser? Or GUI?

      • by Anonymous Coward

        GNU/Linux on the desktop is easier to use than Microsoft Windows and it "just works" 99% of the time for the majority of people currently running Microsoft Windows.

        Care to back up your bullshit with actual research/studies?

        Yeah, I thought not.

        • by neokushan (932374) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @05:04AM (#41762241)

          I second this statement - except I'm not going to hide behind the allure of anonymous coward, I'll use my own god-damned nick and say it - Linux is not "easier to use" than Windows. Sure, it's easy if you already know how to use it but half the reason windows has become so entrenched is because people now know how to use it and frankly, even the likes of Ubuntu (which goes a long way to narrow the gap) don't go far enough to make things easy for the user.

          Seriously, it's this simple - if you have to drop down to the command line for anything, you have failed "ease of use". I'm not saying you never have to open the CLI on Windows, just that you have to do it a lot less often than on *nix.

          • by mckorr (1274964) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @06:53AM (#41762671) Homepage
            I think you might have to think this through again with the launch of Windows 8. The new interface means that a lot of people no longer "know how to use it." The desktop paradigm that everyone has been using for decades is still there, but Microsoft seems to be doing their best to hide it. But I must agree with you about the cli. I use it constantly on both Windows and OS X, but then I learned in the days of DOS. Most of my high school CS students have no idea it even exists, much less have any idea how to use it. I get a lot of looks of fascination and horror when they see me use it.
            • by neokushan (932374)

              Oh you're absolutely right, I could do with a massive disclaimer on my post saying something like "*Windows versions before 8".

          • by poetmatt (793785)

            If you can't find a linux interface that works for you, you haven't tried any linux interfaces. It's that fucking simple. Literally people pick it up easier than windows, it just carries a bullshit stigma of "it's just too hard/too complicated/must be command line".

            • I think Neokushan is correct since the more choices you have the more complicated things become. However, I don't think that is what he meant.

              Windows does not give you a choice, so you are forced to learn its UI like everyone else. Because so many people are forced to learn the Windows UI and Windows is the dominate OS, the learning curve experienced by the new user is not taken seriously by current Windows users because Windows has reached the level of "this is the way it has always been". It takes a lot

          • Seriously, it's this simple - if you have to drop down to the command line for anything, you have failed "ease of use". I'm not saying you never have to open the CLI on Windows, just that you have to do it a lot less often than on *nix.

            I've been running vanilla Debian stable for about a year and a half after finally giving up on Ubuntu. Before Ubuntu, I was running Gentoo. Before that, Mandrake before it became Mandriva. Before that, Red Hat. Suffice it to say, I've got some experience with a few variet

            • by neokushan (932374)

              You know what, in the interests of catching up with things (because you're absolutely right - I am out of touch and most of my experience comes from Ubuntu), I'm downloading Debian 6.0.6 right now. I'll throw it in a VM* and see how it plays out.

              Amusingly your linux history isn't too different from my own, aside from Red Hat and Gentoo. Every now and then I give linux another shot and usually stumble upon some small, deal-breaking issue (Missing wireless driver, or missing SATA driver - dumb stuff like that

          • by kdemetter (965669)

            Your missing something : Linux != Desktop Environment
            Linux is the kernel.

            Ease of use has a lot more with the Desktop Environment ( KDE, GNOME ,etc ... )

            The best comparison would be to compare distro's ( Ubuntu, Mint, Debian ) with Windows.
            In that sense, there are plenty of distro's which are much easier to use than Windows.

            Think about it : if you want to install software on Windows, you need to put in a CD, or search it on internet, download it, start it up, accept the license, etc..
            On most popular linux di

          • Seriously, it's this simple - if you have to drop down to the command line for anything, you have failed "ease of use".

            I generally agree with what you said; however, this one statement is not fully correct. Permit me to restate it in what I think is the more appropriate manner:

            Seriously, it's this simple - if you have to understand the underlying concepts to manipulate something, you have failed "ease of use".

            I strongly suspect most people would be happy if they could just cut and paste something into the command line and have things magically work. As an example, networking. If a non-expert needs to understand routing tabl

      • by hairyfeet (841228) <bassbeast1968 AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday October 25, 2012 @04:45AM (#41762185) Journal

        If by "just works" you mean you install it on 1.- A desktop a couple of years old,so you don't have to deal with the mess that is wireless 2.- You idea of "work" only involves a browser, an IDE, and LO, 3.- you don't actually update it EVAR so you don't have to deal with "update foo broke my driver"...then yes it does work.

        The problem is you just eliminated a good 85% of the planet with that list. there is a REASON why the ONLY inroads Linux has made is because of Google Android, where they took the kernel away from Torvalds, its because Torvalds and his old guard clic simply will never change the way they do things.

        Heck even one of the developers of Red Hat [google.com] says Torvalds "top down let the devs control everything" approach is WRONG and has made the desktop "suckage" and that if anything Linux should be copying Android in just concentrating on the kernel and let the makers of the hardware deal with the drivers, certainly more open than the way its done now and he does have some really good points to make.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          Right, because nobody ever had troubles getting windows drivers to work or had to deal with an upgrade from XP to Vista borking an entire system. Pretty much every Linux person I've ever talked to that has to due tech support for family has reported that their "monthly fix-it-for-me calls" dropped to yearly calls the instant they switched said family members to Linux.
          • Pretty much every Linux person I've ever talked to that has to due tech support for family has reported that their "monthly fix-it-for-me calls" dropped to yearly calls the instant they switched said family members to Linux.

            "He seemed to really like this Linbox thing, I just couldn't bring myself tell him that it broke and I haven't used my computer for six months."

            I kid! ...sorta.

        • by hackula (2596247)
          2, IDE? Drivers? 85% of people have no idea what either of those things are. If it runs the Facebook, then it is sufficient for most.
        • If by "just works" you mean you install it on 1.- A desktop a couple of years old,so you don't have to deal with the mess that is wireless 2.- You idea of "work" only involves a browser, an IDE, and LO, 3.- you don't actually update it EVAR so you don't have to deal with "update foo broke my driver"...then yes it does work.

          The problem is you just eliminated a good 85% of the planet with that list. there is a REASON why the ONLY inroads Linux has made is because of Google Android, where they took the kernel away from Torvalds, its because Torvalds and his old guard clic simply will never change the way they do things.

          Heck even one of the developers of Red Hat [google.com] says Torvalds "top down let the devs control everything" approach is WRONG and has made the desktop "suckage" and that if anything Linux should be copying Android in just concentrating on the kernel and let the makers of the hardware deal with the drivers, certainly more open than the way its done now and he does have some really good points to make.

          Huh, this is marked +5 Insightful?

          What you're saying may have been true in 2003 or so. Not so much now. Anecdote isn't the plural of evidence, so take this for what you will but I don't know of anyone who's had all those terrible terrible problems you've gone on about.

          Most people I know fire up the installer, install it and done. Everything works. Hell, usually works better than Windows out of the box since with Windows you're almost certainly going to have to come back and start loading drivers for this an

          • by hairyfeet (841228)

            Uhhh...Ubuntu 11 along with the last release of Mint and PCLOS "new" enough for you?

            I'll tell ya what, I'll tell you just as I tell everyone else that says "poo poo, that doesn't happen poo poo" to STEP RIGHT UP and take the Hairyfeet challenge! And with this challenge I actually GIVE YOU A HEAD START Because we won't even go near the "hardware roulette" and lame ass rarely updated hardware lists so you have NO idea what PC peripherals being sold in your average B&M work and what don't, so that's a BIG

            • by smash (1351)

              You forgot to also add - many of the applications the user got used to in the 2006 vintage Linux will have been deprecated or replaced with new, totally different software with new and unfamiliar bugs. It appears that as soon as a lot of Gnome or KDE software actually gets stable, the developer gives up and goes off to do something else, leaving some other person to re-write a new app for the next revision of KDE or Gnome.

              I went through that cycle repeatedly on Linux between 1996 and 2006, and every now

              • by hairyfeet (841228)

                Nice to see I'm not the only one drunk on the koolaid. and you notice how NONE of them will step up and accept the challenge? Wanna know why? because they are scared because they KNOW what will happen!

                Lets take the one they just looove to take about "Being for newbies" Ubuntu. in just the 5 years since Vista came out they 1.-Ripped out ALSA for Pulse, 2.-Did MAJOR changes to the Network manager including a LOT of futzing with Wireless (now more unstable than ever), 3.- Replace Gnome 2 with Unity, 4.- As you

              • by smash (1351)
                The above test - which resulting in base crashing and losing my single table, single primary key with a name field database - was perfomed 2 weeks ago using debian stable by the way. Not years agp. This month...
        • Just to be helpful, it is clique, not clic. I waited to post this so only you would see it. I am not trying to be a grammer (sic) nazi. ;)

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        >GNU/Linux on the desktop is easier to use than Microsoft Windows and it "just works" 99% of the time for the majority of people currently running Microsoft Windows.

        That's not the point at all in this context. The problem is people like you do not even understand the problem GNU/Linux faces here:

        It does not make ANY GODDAMN DIFFERENCE if GNU/Linux or Ubuntu or whatever does 100% for the majority of people. The point is, why would people switch: What is the incentive? Windows already comes with their PCs

        • by smpoole7 (1467717)

          > Windows already comes with their PCs and does pretty much what they want to.

          Someone mod up the AC. He beat me to it.

          It has been proven in survey after survey that most people stick with what came with their PC when they bought it. For the vast majority, that's Windows. Likewise, most phones now run iOS or Android, and that's what it'll run. They've never heard of version numbers or "Ice Cream Sandwich" or anything else like that.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          And you fail to understand that is why Linux is not taking off, a monopoly on the installed base. I don't expect 95-99% of users to install their own OS, even those users who re-install Windows themselves are a minority. So Yes, you are right, as long as MS gets to use OEMs to shove Windows onto the hardware (and all hardware) then users will just use what is there.

          I have 15+ copies of Windows I own, but haven't used Windows is over 10 years :( Where I live, it is cheaper to buy an entire system with Window

        • It does not make ANY GODDAMN DIFFERENCE if GNU/Linux or Ubuntu or whatever does 100% for the majority of people. The point is, why would people switch: What is the incentive?

          Well, a good software centre/package manager setup that updates everything from one app (or just quietly in the background without fricking Java Update Scheduler popping up every week asking to update) is a good reason. Though I think maybe Windows 8 is going to have something like this, but it probably won't be as comprehensive as the Linux equivalents for quite a while.

          Windows lets them use their computer and play their games, but a good distro like pre-Unity Ubuntu is nicer to use. Mint is carrying thing

          • by smash (1351)

            As per hairyfeet's posts - have you actually tried to upgrade both Windows and Linux boxes in the past decade? Or macs?

            I've done plenty of dist upgrades in my day (since 1996) and breakage is common. Windows is marginally better, and OS X is a case of pop in DVD and wait, everything just works.

            • Yep I've done Windows, Linux and Windows in the last decade, and think I upgraded a Mac in the decade before.

              Yep things can break sometimes.. but there are also "rolling" distros that you could use.

              • by smash (1351)
                Yes, i tracked debian both stable and unstable for several years (like, 1996 through 2006). Shit still breaks, and applications get deprecated between desktop environment releases.
      • by Anonymous Coward

        GNU/Linux on the desktop is easier to use than Microsoft Windows and it "just works" 99% of the time for the majority of people currently running Microsoft Windows

        Pssst, your virginity is showing.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Most average people using average computers already use Linux, either as Android on their phone, or powering the majority of websites they spend most of their time on ...

      The "desktop" i.e. a machine with separate screen and keyboard is disappearing in both the corporate world (which is where people usually mean) and the home, to be replaced by laptops and pads, laptops have such custom hardware that they will only every work with the preinstalled OS, and pads normally cannot have any other OS (but this is

      • to be replaced by laptops and pads, laptops have such custom hardware that they will only every work with the preinstalled OS, and pads normally cannot have any other OS (but this is quite often Android ...)

        This is wrong. MS does have an insanely large install base with Windows, and enjoy the benefits of vendor lock-in on the Desktop market. This is largely due to moronic developers who chose a proprietary compiler and toolchain instead of a cross platform one to begin with; Ie, they took the MS bait and are locked in, thus locking in their users. Smart devs & studios who start with cross platform in mind don't limit our market share needlessly by handing the control over the size of our user base over

    • by umghhh (965931)
      that is not the way groups of humans live/behave/work and group of developers is a group of humans also when they do not like to see it that way. In any group of humans that do something together there is a leader or a group of leaders (as in diarchy in ancient Greece&Rome etc). The way they are chosen i.e. formally or by accident or it just happened that way as in case of Linux & Mr. Torvalds matters much less than how effective the organisation works with them i.e. it is not only quality of the le
    • by ikaruga (2725453)
      Windows, Android, OSX, iOS are successful because they are sold already installed on their respective devices. The only reason Linux is not a major desktop OS is the lack of commercial support from a major consumer electronics company. Most people hate computers and don't want to install OSes. If Dell/HP/Sony/Toshiba/Acer/Asus decide to stop sucking milk from Balmers fat tits and deploy their computers with well supported Linux desktop environment while also promoting 3rd part app development there is no re
      • Windows, Android, OSX, iOS are successful because they are sold already installed on their respective devices. The only reason Linux is not a major desktop OS is the lack of commercial support from a major consumer electronics company. Most people hate computers and don't want to install OSes. If Dell/HP/Sony/Toshiba/Acer/Asus decide to stop sucking milk from Balmers fat tits and deploy their computers with well supported Linux desktop environment while also promoting 3rd part app development there is no reason for it not to be successful. Given the open nature of Linux I fail to see anything Linus can do that could be a problem.

        People have been saying this for years. The mass bundling of Linux on well known PC platforms just isn't going to happen. Wishing it were so isn't going to make it so.

    • by Bob9113 (14996) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @03:24AM (#41761939) Homepage

      as a "just works" freeware replacement for Windows, it's been a bust.

      It also makes a terrible cheese grater, and the last time I tried to drive it to the store it turned out Linux isn't even tangible, let alone a serviceable automobile.

    • by knarf (34928) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @03:26AM (#41761945) Homepage

      but as a "just works" freeware replacement for Windows, it's been a bust.

      What does Windows have to do with Linux? For that matter, what does Windows have to do with 'just works'? Why do you think Linus' influence over the kernel - and nothing but the kernel - has stopped Linux distributions from 'replacing' Windows for 'average people'?

      Hint: it is not Linus which kept Linux distributions from 'replacing' Windows for 'average people'. It is money and corporate politics.

      And Linux is not 'freeware'. It is free software. Look up the difference if you want, these things are not the same.

      • by Kjella (173770)

        Why do you think Linus' influence over the kernel - and nothing but the kernel - has stopped Linux distributions from 'replacing' Windows for 'average people'?

        Emphasis mine. Linus is not responsible for the state of Gnome, KDE, Unity, X11, OpenGL and so on. How much does that matter? Well you can look at the desktop market share of BSD - if you can find it - and OS X. Desktop market share is 0,1% the kernel and 99,9% everything else.

        • by ifrag (984323)

          Well you can look at the desktop market share of BSD

          Even among the community of BSD users, my guess is many of them are not running it on their main desktop. I've tried to use all the main variants on the desktop (Open/Free/Net), and they generally work more or less OK after a fair amount of tweaking, at least if you don't want to get anything too bleeding edge on it. If for some reason I absolutely had to have it on the desktop then FreeBSD is probably the least painful one in the main group to go for.

          As a server OS, it's been absolutely awesome, and wher

          • by Bengie (1121981)
            I don't see PC-BSD in there. Mostly just augmented FreeBSD to be more desktop friendly.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      So it needs a Richard Stallman.

    • by nzac (1822298)

      You could argue that i guess but you wont be able to begin to support it.

      You could argue that "It just works" is extremely hard on third party hardware with no or partial support from them and without Linus it would be in an even worse.

    • by TheLink (130905) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @04:42AM (#41762173) Journal
      Linux is "everywhere". Desktop Linux isn't. Torvalds does Linux. He's not really responsible for Desktop Linux (he grumbles about it every now and then, but it's someone else's job).

      If you want to blame someone for the failures of Desktop Linux you should blame whoever is responsible for GNOME, Unity, KDE, etc.

      Vista was an opportunity for Desktop Linux to gain marketshare, but the Desktop Linux bunch didn't do anything. Many Slashdotters here claim the developers made things worse (I don't know, I've long given up on Desktop Linux - sometimes to me it seems like the developers are purposely sabotaging Desktop Linux).

      Apple managed to get significant share with OS X, so it definitely is possible.
    • It has certainly been successful in other areas, but as a "just works" freeware replacement for Windows, it's been a bust.

      Linux isn't a "just works freeware replacement for Windows", never was. The same as a Shell is not a replacement for CMD and The Gimp is not a replacement for Photoshop...that's something you should get into your brain.

    • by grcumb (781340)

      It could be argued that one of the main reasons why Linux has utterly failed as an operating system for average people on average computers is Linus Torvalds.

      That sentence is so truth-free that I find myself wondering whether it was authored by Karl Rove or Steven Colbert. I keep wavering between the two, so I don't know whether to laugh or cry in despair at people's appalling inability to reason.

    • by wisty (1335733)

      > It could be argued

      Don't just drop a bombshell like that, try to actually argue it.

      OK, I will - Linux is a great kernel, but Linus's focus on the kernel (and not on the UI or distro) means the rest is just a mess. The distro also needs a Linux Torvalds. There's Mark Shuttleworth, who's done a decent job. You can bag Unity all you want, but if it weren't for a group like Canonical taking responsibility for the distro we'd all still be on Gentoo.

      • by hyades1 (1149581)

        Thanks for cleaning up my mess. As mentioned earlier, I plead a long, tiring day. You did a better job than I'd have done saying what I wanted to say.

    • by aNonnyMouseCowered (2693969) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @06:21AM (#41762509)

      Here's where the GNU-slash "zealots" may actually have a point. You've just committed the common error of confusing the Linux kernel for the operating system that consists of various other pieces, including but not limited to the system software produced by the GNU project. Linus Torvalds has a significant say only on the Linux kernel.

      If you want proof, Google no further than Linus's unflattering comments about Gnome 3. Did the Gnome developers rip out Gnome Shell after Linus dubbed Gnome 3 an "unholy mess"? Any "improvements" to the Gnome 3 user XP are due more to the collective howl of the Net than to any Linus rant.

      • by hyades1 (1149581)

        Yeah, I realized too late...I plead being tired and sloppy with my terminology. If I remember correctly, Torvalds had a lot more to say early on in the development of the various desktop OS's, almost by default. I'll admit it wasn't something I studied all that closely.

    • It's not meant to be a Windows replacement. That's ReactOS.
    • by Bill_the_Engineer (772575) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @07:53AM (#41763221)

      It could be argued that one of the main reasons why Linux has utterly failed as an operating system for average people on average computers is Linus Torvalds. It has certainly been successful in other areas, but as a "just works" freeware replacement for Windows, it's been a bust.

      The goal behind Linux was to have a multi-user, multi-tasking OS that was Unix like. It was not meant to compete directly against or replace Windows. Linux is just a kernel and nothings prevent someone from building an easy to use OS from the kernel at anytime. You had RedHat, Slackware, Mandrake, Debian, and eventually Ubuntu and other distributions designing what they felt would be a good user experience. I don't understand how Linus had any negative influence, nor do I understand the relevance of your statement. Especially when you consider the sheer number of non-computer savvy people unknowingly using the Linux kernel within their smartphones through Android.

      If someone held the OpenStack project to the core requirements needed to be useful there would still be nothing preventing a distribution from making a more featured or easier to use version that is built on top of OpenStack.

    • by PlusFiveTroll (754249) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @09:15AM (#41764223) Homepage

      Irrational posts always seem to get modded up, crazy.

      We have to start here... Linux is not an operating system, it is a kernel.
      Windows is an operating system, but also an ecosystem that is fully controlled by Microsoft.
      Linus wanted a free kernel that wouldn't get taken over by commercial interests and forked to a million pieces like Unix at the time.
      Windows entire design history has been to grow for commercial gain, Wiindows is not free, it is licensed at a cost.
      Linux was not designed as a desktop operating system, it's not an operating system, and is not sold as one on the level that Torvalds operates at.
      Windows is designed as a desktop operating system and is sold as on at that level.
      Linux has never had software monopoly on its product (and is designed to prevent that).
      Windows is it's own monopoly (just like Apple is their own). It used its power to force OEMs to install Windows on all computers they sold, or they would lose OEM pricing.

      Comparing Openstack to Linux to Windows is a irrational. It is a totally different market, Openstack is 'competing' in a market with choice. If you don't like openstack you can roll your own, or whatever. You couldn't do that with windows. So your entire premise is backwards. Windows controlled by Bill Gates and Microsoft dominated the industry. Apple, when led by the iron fist of Steve Jobs dominated in their products.

      • by hyades1 (1149581)

        And Ubuntu is controlled by nobody...because it's about as popular as an STD in a nunnery.

  • Everything is better with Linus!
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Comparing technical leadership to business leadership wow.

    Linus essentially has one rule. Don't break it if it works. Even when Linus uses his bully pulpit to blast another project it is because they have broken things that worked.

    Linus does not set a vision or a direction beyond code quality.

    The comparison being made is like comparing an apples and a rubix cubes.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Except it is the code quality that is the issue, or rather the inability of people to use OpenStack without heavily modifying things and spending lots of time getting the setup right.

      Linus would have rejected all patches until things worked again.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    To my shame I can't name the equivalent on Linus for Apache, and that's done pretty well. I don't think you need to have a figurehead for this, I just think that at the end of the day OpenStack is a bit..... well.... dull. That's not necessarily bad, but isn't a bit like saying "We need a figurehead to control the drafting of acceptable banana radii of curvature as then everyone will be interested in the project".

  • by evil_aaronm (671521) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @02:34AM (#41761757)
    The summary makes a strong point: Linux is heavily dependent on Linus. Should we worry about this? What happens when Linus calls it quits, one way or another?

    Mod me off-topic, if you must, but it's a question we'll need to face, at some point.
    • by mwvdlee (775178)

      One of the current maintainers for older kernel branches will step up and take responsibility for the current kernel.
      Linux and Apple occupy opposite sides of the spectrum; unrestricted access vs. hand-holding, stability vs. ever changing features, freedom vs. security, community vs. cult-of-personality. The impact would be very different. If Linux stopped, it would very slowly become redundant over time. If Apple stopped, it would instantly lose it's selling points.

    • Andrew Morton becomes the new... wait, what the hell? Marquee? I believe that word is spelled... Marquis.
    • by olau (314197)

      Then we rename it to Gregus and move on. Silly question.



  • I started off writing this with; "While I have great respect and admiration for Linus I seriously doubt that having one unilateral "decision maker" is an advantage..."

    After some thought it turned into; "Sure there is always a slow-down due to additional debate when there is more than one person at the helm however, when they reach a consensus and fail they will not be able to pinpoint the guilty party.

    I guess what I'm saying is that if you have a wagon and that's pulled by 10 horses that's great, as lo
  • by The Evil Atheist (2484676) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @02:48AM (#41761807) Homepage
    Linus specifically set up Linux development to not be dependent on him by creating git. People don't technically have to build from his own tree, but people do because they trust their experience with working with him.
    You cannot just install a Torvalds into OpenStack. If there is no Torvalds of OpenStack, it's because no one is technically qualified or has the reputation for it.
    This kind of reasoning is purely cargo cult management. You would think people have learnt to stop thinking in cargo cult ways by now.
    • by sumdumass (711423)

      I don't disagree but I think the bigger issue is that OpenStack probably needs a mouthpiece of sorts. I think this is what is really being asked here.

      This mouthpiece should be able to relay.promote what OpenStack is doing and monitor user demands/needs to thin out the wacky unachievable and redundant but said differently so the dev teams can gather a clear focus on feature that need improvement or added. I haven't paid much attention to the project largely because I think the cloud is marketing speak for wa

    • Postgresql gets by fine without a poster-boy (or even a name that anyone can pronounce).
  • by Animats (122034) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @02:48AM (#41761809) Homepage

    "OpenStack is a global collaboration of developers and cloud computing technologists producing the ubiquitous open source cloud computing platform for public and private clouds. The project aims to deliver solutions for all types of clouds by being simple to implement, massively scalable, and feature rich."

    It seems to be mostly a Python-based automated system administration tool set for managing big machine farms. But the documentation is so buzzword-compliant it's hard to tell what actually works. The goal seems to be to have something like an open-source version of Amazon Web Services. Allocate real or virtual machine instances, load them up with executable images, hook them to some stored data sets, tell the network where the instances are and what they can talk to, and go. That's reasonable enough, and it would help if they'd just say that. And be clear about what actually works.

    • Nothing actually works... Out of the box.

      That's the issue, there's no one there to say "fuck that patch, I won't include it until things work again".

      • by chthon (580889)

        So what is really meant is that they need a proper qualitative development process, guided by lean principles.

      • by GiMP (10923)

        You could argue that Linux hardly works out of the box. You run a distribution. Several distributions are being built, some will be open source (keep in mind that OpenStack is Apache Licensed).

        Unfortunately, very few distributions have actually be released into the wild as of yet, and those that have have looked more like Slackware than Ubuntu.

    • by cas2000 (148703)

      It seems to be mostly a Python-based automated system administration tool set for managing big machine farms.

      it might seem like that on the surface, but in practice it's more like what a bunch of python programmers with little experience and no interest in systems administration might image a systems admin tool would be like.

      don't get me wrong, i like openstack, i use and work with it every day - but it's painfully obvious that the developers think only in terms of python and json and really don't give a sh

  • by SuperBanana (662181) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @03:43AM (#41761995)

    I've looked over OpenStack and it looks great, with one exception: block storage (ie volumes.)

    GlusterFS currently isn't recommended for VM storage by the GlusterFS people. They say "maybe" with the next release.

    Sheepdog isn't recommended for production (and from what I read, provides abysmal performance - we're talking single-digit MB/sec.)

    Lustre requires enormous setup+admin overhead.
    DRBD isn't scalable beyond 2 nodes, really, and has serious issues with reliability and keeping in sync.

    They've made a huge hullabaloo about Cinder - it's going to do my taxes, slice bread, and surpass Christ - but information as to what the hell it actually is or how it'll do it, beyond marketing-speak, is difficult to find. If you dig around, you find that it's a layer on top of other network block devices.

    Far as I can tell, the only free (in either sense) backend they support is Sheepdog, which, as I said before, isn't considered anywhere near production ready.

    It also appears that 'Highly available', 'fault-Tolerant', and so on- is coming from the underlying storage, not Cinder itself.

    So, where's the beef? You can't have an "open" visualization system if you then require a netapp, IBM, or nexenta backend (sidenote: has anyone SEEN nexenta pricing? Holy christ on a stick!)

    • by GiMP (10923)

      Cinder provides EBS-like functionality with an OpenStack-native API and support for the AWS api, too.

      This is a direct port/rename of the old nova-volumes code. The project is only really gearing up now for serious forward development. Expect more from the next stable release (April 2013).

    • They do have their swift storage subsystem, but it is not block storage, its object storage. it is, however, replicated, and highly available..

      On their website, http://www.openstack.org/software/openstack-storage/ [openstack.org] they also mention ceph, nexenta, netapp, and SolidFire (never heard of the last one).. I didn't think Gluster was block storage, however.. I thought it was just file...

    • by ScuttleMonkey (55) * Works for Slashdot
      As one AC already pointed out, you should check out Ceph [ceph.com] (full disclaimer: I work for Inktank now, the consulting services company that employs most of the core Ceph devs). Ceph is, at its heart a Distributed Object store, but we allow you to access in a number of different ways:
      • * Native API
      • * Via a RESTful interface that can handle native Amazon S3 and Swift API calls
      • * As a thinly provisioned block device
      • * Mount it as a POSIX-compliant file system via CephFS (although this is a bit rough for production en
  • A power that has wrecked the ISO should be able to make short work of OpenStack.
  • by segedunum (883035) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @07:30AM (#41762957)
    I have no idea. With something like Proxmox I download it, install it and start running KVM and OpenVZ machines. Easy. With OpenStack, I go to their web site and I find nothing but a bunch of marketing crap. Cynical me just looks around there and thinks that some companies have got together to make something look open and look as if there might be some open source code and downloads 'somewhere', but there aren't. This is all to try and protect their expensive 'real' products that they know are probably under threat from a truly open source competitor but they just want to muddy the waters.

    I think Joel Spolsky or someone once called it 'fire and motion'.
    • by mvar (1386987)
      I second this. A whole site full of "blah blah blah" nice graphics and catchy marketing terms and no clear explanation of wtf this openstack thing is and why should we, the sysadmins, care. I tried to find a working link and I ended up in Rackspace's site, downloading their openstack variation.
  • Honestly, why do people task these stupid questions? Any article that asks a question is mostly bullshit, full of nonsense and speculation. It feels as if they are just try to throw up any shit they can think of to gain page hits and stir the pot when nothing needs to be stirred.

    Linux has Linus Torvolds because Torvolds wrote the damn thing. Its like asking if "Project/Business X" needs a Bill Gates or a Steve Jobs. They started their respective businesses/projects from the very beginning and thus have a ve

    • by LoRdTAW (99712)

      And just to clarify, when I said Linus wrote the damn thing, I should have said Linus founded the project.

  • How about Larry "Sugarbear" Reyes? You don't need a technical head, just some guy from Rackspace to run around in a straight jacket.

  • The whole world needs a Linus Torvalds!

    Why are Nobel Prizes PS? Cause Obama got one and Linus did not!

  • Has always worked through school.

The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it!) but "That's funny ..." -- Isaac Asimov

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