Friday, May 26, 2006

OpenSolaris contributions

As Jim has just noted, some of my contributions to OpenSolaris recently got putback.

This is great. It's great that Sun - as an organization - gives external contributors like myself the opportunity to put changes into Solaris. It's great that individuals within Sun (thanks Dave!) take on the time and effort required to integrate the changes into the codebase.

It's taken a while to get going. I was starting to work on fixes during the pilot stage of the OpenSolaris project, over a year ago. The fixes just putback aren't those (although I am looking at getting that work integrated too). This set of fixes to the install consolidation was actually due to something I was trying to do at work, and pkgchk wasn't cooperating. In the old days, I could have spent days fighting with support trying to persuade them that (a) it was a problem, and (b) that it might be worth fixing. Instead of which I can now get in there and fix the thing properly.

I have some other fixes planned for the Solaris package tools as well, with several possible performance improvements having been identified.

Actually getting the fixes into OpenSolaris isn't hard (the Sun sponsor does most of the legwork). It would do no harm to start off simple, just to run through the process (I didn't, of course, and it was the first external contribution to the install consolidation as well, so it was a learning experience for us).

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