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Feature: SUSE/openSUSE

openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

By Bruce Byfield on June 13, 2008 (9:00:00 PM)

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Of all the community distributions, probably the least known is openSUSE. After two and a half years, the distro is not only still working out details about how its community operates -- including how its governing board is elected -- but also struggling to come out of the shadow of its corporate parent Novell, much as Fedora has emerged from its initial dominance by Red Hat. With the pending release of openSUSE 11.0, community manager Joe "Zonker" Brockmeier suggests that the distribution is finally starting to get the recognition it deserves. In the middle of preparations for the new release, Brockmeier took the time to talk with Linux.com about the priorities within the community and its relation with the larger world of free software.

Brockmeier became community manager for openSUSE in February, after nine years as a free software journalist, including time as an editorial director at Linux.com and editor-in-chief at Linux Magazine. "There's still a lot of getting acclimated," he admits, but, like the distribution, he seems to be finding his feet. Much of his time -- as much as 50% -- is spent on the road, helping to publicize openSUSE, "getting strategy together" by talking to other members of openSUSE, and making connections with others in the larger free software community, especially those who are leading other non-commercial distributions.

"The distribution has been pretty high quality over the past few years," Brockmeier says, "but I don't think anyone would argue that promotion is a strong suit of most of the developers involved with openSUSE."

In fact, one of the measures of the still-evolving state of openSUSE is that the exact relation between Brockmeier's own position and the project's governing board is still being worked out, so that, unlike in the Fedora project, the community leader does not automatically chair the board. "The board was formed before I was hired, so I don't think that was a consideration," he says. Whether that will change in the future is undecided.

Internal priorities

Meanwhile, Brockmeier is getting on with the job. "The priorities I have right now," he says, "are to help the community teams get up and running, and basically community bootstrapping -- all the activities we need to do to get the community more involved in the production of openSUSE. The main thing right now is getting people involved and giving them the tools to be involved."

To achieve these goals, the project is organizing some basic community structures, such as an openSUSE conference, a community blog site, and a team of volunteers to oversee the first elections to the board (the current board members were appointed by Novell).

It is also changing the nature of the release process. Just as the Fedora project had to evolve new procedures as it grew more independent of Red Hat, so openSUSE is developing more open processes for its workflow. "SUSE Linux was developed entirely in-house," Brockmeier says, while openSUSE is trying to develop procedures more in keeping with a free software project.

In particular, Brockmeier points to the openSUSE Build Service, which is scheduled to become the main platform for future development. "In the future, we should be able to build openSUSE entirely in the build service," he says, "rather than internally and then releasing it. The difference there is that it is will be much easier for people to contribute to openSUSE."

As community building continues, Brockmeier expects to draw strongly on his previous work experience. "I've spent the last nine years or so covering the Linux market, so I've had a lot of time to observe what works and what doesn't," he says. "Probably the closet model for us to look at would be Fedora, because they're the closest in terms of the relationship to the corporate parent. And one of the people I look at as being a really effective community leader would be Max Spevack [the former Fedora Leader].

"That's the great thing about open source: you look at what other projects do, and you try to apply that to your own project, whether that's code of whether that's community governance."

Ties to the larger community

So far, many of Brockmeier's efforts seem focused on improving openSUSE's relations with other free software. But these efforts are hampered to some extent by the fact that some free software advocates, still angered by the Microsoft-Novell pact, extend their anger with Novell to openSUSE. However, this issue has been less important than Brockmeier anticipated when he took the job.

"I think there's a certain percentage of people who will always be unhappy with that deal," he says, "but honestly, I think the large bulk of users and contributors have realized that the deal is not anywhere near as bad as a lot of people originally thought. [Anyway,] the people who are running sites complaining about things aren't the active contributors. It would be nice if the people who disagree strongly with the deal spent their cycles doing things for other projects if they don't want to be part of openSUSE. It would be much more productive."

Another background issue that is less important than might be expected is openSUSE's general relation to Novell. Talking about how Fedora has outgrown its image as simply a beta for Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Brockmeier says, "Perhaps we are benefiting a little bit from the fact that people have been slamming Fedora for that. With Fedora coming out from under that, I think that maybe people understand that a corporate parent can have a community distro and an enterprise distro without the community distro being a beta."

With less need to focus on such concerns than he anticipated, Brockmeier finds himself free to focus on making openSUSE more visible in the free software community. The development of community evangelists like the Fedora Ambassadors is a possibility, but a more immediate concern is supporting local download mirrors around the world -- particularly in China, where an external mirror might be blocked by the government.

"The other big goal I have," he says, "is to find ways in which we can collaborate both with upstream projects and other community distros." To this end, at the recent Linux Tag in Germany, he spent some time talking with Max Spevack and Paul Frields (respectively the former and current Fedora leader) about ways to work on software package compatibility. He has also talked with various leaders in Ubuntu about such problems as dealing with packages that don't have a clear upstream maintainer.

Asked if he supported the call by Mark Shuttleworth of Ubuntu parent Canonical for coordinated release cycles between major distributions, Brockmeier says, "That's something I'm not sure about yet. I think it may have merit, but there's also some people who have written about the problems with that idea in terms of having everyone testing and releasing at once. I'm not sure this is the best idea, but it's something we're discussing."

However, despite such reservations on particulars, in general Brockmeier says, "I don't really view the competition as Fedora or Debian or Ubuntu. I view the competition as Windows and Mac OS X -- and, to a limited extent, OpenSolaris. And so a win for me is gaining more users for Linux. Of course, I would like to gain users for openSUSE, but I'm not going to complain a whole lot if we can reach a larger market share and some of those new users go to Ubuntu or Fedora. So finding ways we can collaborate just makes a lot of sense. I've had enough conversations with folks from the other distros that I think there's a consensus there. So now we just need to find ways to actually do it."

Moving ahead

Clearly, openSUSE still has some evolving to do, but Brockmeier sounds optimistic that it is on the right track at last. "What gets me up in the morning is finding ways to spread Linux, and specifically openSUSE," he says. "That means making a community that has the tools it needs to be as effective as it can, so that contributors can do good work, and making sure there's no obstacles in their way. From the build service and other things that we're doing, I think we're achieving that."

What's more, the community seems to be getting its message out -- as Brockmeier points out, openSUSE 11.0 was in top position on Distrowatch's list of most downloaded distributions for seven days. As of the time of writing, it remains in second spot.

With such tentative signs of success, Brockmeier describes his job satisfaction as "really high. If you ask me mid-flight back from Europe, I might be a little touchy, but, generally speaking, I'm really enjoying the job and working with this community. There's a lot of excellent contributors, and you couldn't ask for a finer group of people to work with."

Bruce Byfield is a computer journalist who writes regularly for Linux.com.

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on openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

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Will the bad smell go away? Probably

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 89.8.170.55] on June 13, 2008 10:32 PM
My relationship with Linux started with evaluating SuSe 8, Mandrake, Lindows and Redhat some years back. Linux was not about a free ride for me, so I purchased the lot. After a testrun with all of them there was no doubt in my mind. SuSe was way ahead the rest of the pack for my usage. I then kept on through the 9 series thinking: Hey - this is more expensive than Windows ever was, but the cause is good. They sold out to Novell and i dropped SuSe without a blink. It WAS a sellout and I'm still not happy about it. Even less so when Novell started levelling with Microsoft. Running OpenSuse 11 with KDE 4.1 from factor as an secondary testground I must say: Suse is back. It reminds me about the enthusiastic feeling I had with the original up to 9.3, and I think it is as good compared to the pack as 9.3 was. Feelings set aside - this WILL be the distro of 2008. None of the other big ones can match it.
Problem is - I still got that bad taste of Microsoft and the sellout in my mouth as well. I'll give OpenSuse 6months and I'll see if that makes it go away. The bad taste, that is...

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 198.207.0.5] on June 13, 2008 10:47 PM
Probably the LEAST well-known? Surely you jest.

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Least known?

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 76.74.196.44] on June 13, 2008 11:45 PM
I consider Ubuntu, OpenSUSE, and Fedora to be actually the most known / most human distros around...

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 192.101.136.224] on June 14, 2008 12:23 AM
Least well known ? It is #2 on distrowatch. If it is unknown, Debian who ??

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 90.199.48.244] on June 14, 2008 11:19 AM
Currently openSUSE is also #1 on distrowatch for _both_ the last seven days and the last 30 days (and it has been for some time).

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 192.168.0.108] on June 14, 2008 03:48 PM
I hold off on recommending openSUSE to our LUG due to Novell's license. If you call it open, be open about it.

For those of you end-users that do not need to respin the distribution, you probably won't care much.

Any other distributions I know of, encourage folks to respin the distro to fit your need. openSUSE will not allow anyone to redistribute the work easily unless you debrand all the Novell icon, lizard icon, etc. which is quite hassle.

Until then...

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 90.199.48.244] on June 14, 2008 04:21 PM
openSUSE really _do_ heavily encourage you to respin the distribution; for a couple of years now they have piped significant efforts into creating http://opensuse.org/KIWI which is pretty much the most configurable and extensible image creator around. For example, the KDE Four Live CD -- probably the most popular little respin of any distribution -- is openSUSE-based using KIWI.

As for debranding -- I really don't think anything of what they ask for is unreasonable; I mean, you really _don't_ want others passing off some other altered distribution as openSUSE.

Furthermore, it is actually trivially easily to debrand, as there's even a tool created for doing just that, called rembrand (see http://software.opensuse.org/search?q=rembrand ).

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Re(1): openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 192.168.0.108] on June 14, 2008 06:12 PM
You missed understood my point. Obviously respin won't be under the name openSUSE. What I'm talking about is to remove anything that has letter N, the lizard icon, etc. Trust me I tried all of the links you outlined already. It is quite a hassle. I did try a respin months ago and gave up.

Let's look at it this way. How many flavors out there that are based on Fedora, Slackware, Debian/Ubuntu, and Mandriva that are freely redistributable with no strings attached? And how many are there based on not_so_OpenSUSE?

The answer will give you the reason I mentioned.

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Re(2): openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 90.199.48.244] on June 14, 2008 06:18 PM
Yes, I know you were talking about all branding. And like I said, rembrand works really well -- I've used it in the past. What problem did you have? If you have, it's a bug (so filing it could really help!). The application is made to remove all the necessary branding. So removing all the branding is really quite trivial.

I really, really doubt that anyone has not created an openSUSE-based distribution because of this issue, honestly. And KIWI is simply unrivalled as an image creator.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 71.30.24.97] on June 15, 2008 03:39 AM
I used to love getting the box sets of SUSE. The manuals were great. I ran SUSE right up until the Microsoft deal. I still kind of miss it....but not enough to go back.


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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 213.98.192.215] on June 15, 2008 10:26 AM
I use Pardus (new version in a few days) and I like PCLinuxOS:

http://www.pardus.org.tr/eng/index.html

http://www.pclinuxos.com/

For those who don't want to pay Microsoft for using Linux: http://boycottnovell.com/

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 90.203.105.15] on June 15, 2008 11:09 PM
Stop your FUD and read http://opensuse.org/FAQ:Novell-MS

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 64.126.166.52] on June 15, 2008 08:13 PM
Obviously openSuSE is more than a beta of Novell's SuSE, but it does play a role in advancing Novell's ambitions.

And because Novell's collaboration with Microsoft does defame Linux developers and GNU/Linux users by branding them as software thieves and pirates, there really is no way to promote openSuSE without aiding an illegal software monopolist and its unscrupulous collaborator, Novell.

It is a shame that the SuSE name is thus tainted, and a greater shame that openSuSE cannot succeed without also helping Novell and Microsoft gain market and mindshare in what ought to be a software libre environment.

But, that is the reality of the situation, no matter how much the open SuSE development community might be in denial.

I refuse to use openSuSE and I urge others to do the same until the Novell-Microsoft deal is ended.

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 90.203.105.15] on June 15, 2008 11:19 PM
This is just ridiculous nonsense that obviously comes to you from the completely ridiculous FUD that has infiltrated the community because of a few silly people. Getting openSUSE/SUSE and running _Linux_ does NOT help Microsoft, come on. Novell made a _business_ deal with Microsoft that covers several things, one of them being customer patent protection. It's unbelievable to think that this has been twisted to suggest that there is a general strategic alliance between Novell and MS when the reality could barely be further from the truth.

Believe it or not you can still be a fierce competitor even though you agree to collaborate on some particular areas. The collaboration came about because of CUSTOMER demand, no other reason -- and the amount of new customers that SUSE got because of this speaks for itself. Thousands of SUSE Linux Enterprise copies sold since the deal. Novell have taken full advantage of this deal -- they've got more much-needed money into Linux, they've got more and more copies of Linux sold, and they're working to tackle one of the main issues in the enterprise -- interoperability with Microsoft products. Which, as much as you might hate, is simply a reality in the enterprise when MS currently has such a dominance.

SUSE and Novell are one of the biggest contributors to free software -- they're certainly the biggest contributors to the Linux _desktop_, with hundreds of free software developers working day in and day out to make the Linux desktop an actual reality. They're the ones (like Red hat) working upstream all the time on the applications that all other distributions (like Ubuntu) happily use. So really, they deserve an awful lot of kudos, and Novell succeeding is actually a huge -- or rather, HUGE -- benefit to Linux, considering how many developers they have working on the Linux desktop.

In summary, just read http://opensuse.org/FAQ:Novell-MS

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Re(1): openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 88.6.160.16] on June 21, 2008 03:58 PM
- "Novell have taken full advantage of this deal", not the community.

- "Novell made a _business_ deal with Microsoft that covers several things, one of them being customer patent protection". The patent protection is for the customers of Novell, not for the users of openSUSE. Can you say what are the patents of Microsoft that Linux is violating? Why make a deal with a company whose CEO (Ballmer) says that Linux is like a cancer in relation with the intellectual property. Do you think that software patents are good?

- An Empirical Look at Software Patents
http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=461701
http://www.bu.edu/law/faculty/profiles/fullcvs/part-time/bessen_j.html

- Pro-softpatent analysts have yet to find benefit from software patents
http://endsoftpatents.org/resources-for-economists

You are doing FUD, not boycottnovell.com

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 64.147.9.101] on June 15, 2008 11:26 PM
"I refuse to use openSuSE and I urge others to do the same until the Novell-Microsoft deal is ended. "

I refuse to listen to this kind of senseless bitching and complaining. As another poster has alluded to in his link, Novell has been of MAJOR contributer to Linux and related projects. OpenSUSE 11.0 is looking really good. I love the new package manager which is loads faster than previous versions. I have been using a release candidate of opensuse 11.0 and I am very impressed.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 70.41.185.87] on June 15, 2008 10:46 PM
I've tried openSUSE for a little bit just about every time they come out with a new release. I do like a lot it has to offer. I know I'm in the minority but I like the SLAB menu. And overall its a solid stable distro. But I always leave because I loathe RPMs and thy always cause some sort of trouble for me. This is the one spot where openSUSE isn't innovating and isn't coming into its own. I'm not saying they should switch to apt, because, even though I fine apt to be a lot better it is far from perfect. It just feels like packaging in linux is stagnant and of all the common package formats RPM is the worst but still most used.

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 90.203.105.15] on June 15, 2008 11:24 PM
This is one area where a lot of innovation has been done recently actually, see http://news.opensuse.org/2008/06/06/sneak-peeks-at-opensuse-110-package-management-with-duncan-mac-vicar/

In summary:
* Lightnight-fast package management now (using SAT solver, and SOLV metadata)
* Low memory usage
* Very intelligent solver (unlike apt)
* LZMA payload for RPMs, meaning RPMs are now even smaller (faster to download), and faster to decompress (faster to install), where nearly all other distributions are using bzip2.
* Very featureful CLI tool (for example, install remote/local RPMs)
* 1-Click-Install

And of course RPM still has other advantages such as being biarch compatible, which the Debian package management system still can't handle.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 84.61.13.231] on June 15, 2008 11:13 PM
I think it would be really great if Fedora, Ubuntu and OpenSuse would agree on which package versions they would ship. Release dates can still be totally different. It shouldnt be about getting a bigger piece of the pie, it should be about making the pie bigger for all Distros and giving the users the best distro possible and colaboration will definately help.

I hope Brockmeier and Spevack and their CEOs think so too .. I really really hope so.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 76.191.198.105] on June 16, 2008 04:52 AM
"Coordinated release cycles"? Mark...Mark...you've got to be kidding. The best-engineered releases in the *nix world for end-users right now are PCLinuxOS and PC-BSD. Small communities with tight standards will beat big, loose Linux communities any day. Coordinate them? What a mess.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 89.175.165.2] on June 16, 2008 01:21 PM
"I refuse to use openSUSE and I urge others to do the same until the Novell-Microsoft deal is ended. "

Only bone-headed dummies can say this. openSUSE is free and opened. The mentioned above N-M deal neither affect developers' freedom nor mangles open source spirit behind the distro.
It seems to me you are so irritated at a well-known person standing behind Microsoft. What is the reason of your wrath? Probably some Microsoft employee has injured you or walked away a girl from you? Maybe the reason is financial envy?

I've been using SUSE since version 10. I'm totally satisfied with it. I am permanently experimenting with other distros, but none of them has supplanted openSUSE from my desktop yet.

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 64.126.166.52] on June 18, 2008 03:36 PM
"Bone-headed dummy" or not, what I wrote was that the deal defames developers -- and specifically, this means KERNEL developers.

And while it doesn't directly impose any restriction on their actions today, it is something that Microsoft has stored away for possible future litigation: An "admission by a leading Linux distribution" that the code infringes Microsoft's patent portfolio. Supporting "evidence," which may or may not be used, depending upon what else can be phonied up, and depending on the future political climate is. Well worth Microsoft's gamble of a relatively small chunk of change by their standards, which was also a big chunk of change by Novell's. And that "admission of guilt" on behalf of the entire GNU/Linux community is what Microsoft paid Novell for...not the right to distribute a Linux distribution with "coupons."

openSuSE users and the vast majority of the openSuSE development community aren't responsible for Novell's deal with Microsoft...everyone understands that.

But what people you insult as "bone-headed dummies" have been explaining all along is that openSuSE is part of the overall Novell/SuSE ecosystem, and that plays into Microsoft's hand, by providing them statistical evidence that will be used to "prove" that the Linux community recognized the validity of Microsoft's patent infringement claims and sought indemnity by migrating to distributions under Novell's "umbrella" -- including openSuSE.

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Re(1): openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 89.175.165.2] on June 19, 2008 05:27 PM
Sorry for insulting Linux purists in my previous post.
I was too irritated by the comments that strongly resembled childlike calls to beat bad guys that befriend with evil Gates.

I don’t believe that some day parts of Linux code will be closed by Microsoft patients or that Microsoft will succeed in any other scam in the rivalry with free operation systems (as you are trying to foretell or admonish). It’s impossible even for such giant as Microsoft, because Linux grounds on thousands of independent from Microsoft developers and the system will always have its devoted users and developers.

I think openSUSE does a lot to attract new users, it is really user-friendly and the whole Linux community should be pleased with it if attraction of new users is among its objectives. I deem you will agree that for a user who has very poor it-knowledge and uses IE to browse Internet and Word to type texts will be much more easier to start his/her acquaintance with Linux world from openSUSE than Slackware. Therefore I was really vexed by your call not to use it.

Moreover, I deem that while openSUSE is free and while it satisfies my needs it is good for me. I understand that there are people who want to fight and be heroes, I wish them luck. But for many people there is still no difference which license or whose product it is, much more important is that it is cost-free and meets one’s personal requirements.

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Re(2): openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 64.126.166.52] on June 20, 2008 03:33 PM
Yes, but while you don't believe Microsoft will succeed at this, a lot of people -- people who have thought it through -- are afraid they just might.

And let's get something straight: Microsoft's intent in entering into an agreement with Novell was not to assist the GNU/Linux community. The intent is to nail the lid on a box containing FOSS, including GNU, Linux, and any other threat to the $Billions they rake in from their monopoly.

That is why Microsoft entered into the agreement. But why did Novell?

When Novell purchased SuSE, and then as Novell fought SCO, many in the community were grateful and almost automatically began to think of Novell as "one of the good guys." But perhaps people should have been looking more closely at Novell's board, and where Novell goes for capital.

So, if Microsoft's goal is to nail a lid on Linux, what is Novell's angle? Well, ladies and germs, it is to act as the sole gatekeeper to a much smaller GNU/Linux ecosystem. Microsoft will tolerate Linux at a small percentage of the total market so long as they can continue to control 85~90% of the total market. In some ways, that's better for Microsoft, because they can defend themselves against antitrust prosecution by pointing to the existance of a few niche competitors. And although Novell will be sitting on a much smaller market share than Microsoft, it is such a large market overall that Novell's principle stockholders can make themselves very, very, very, rich indeed.

The "gatekeeper" angle comes into play with the "interoperability" strategy. That is where stuff like MONO comes into the picture, as an example.

You will still be able to run Linux and all the GNU software, and you won't even have to run SuSE. But you won't be able to do much of anything of value with those systems unless you do business with Novell/SuSE, because Novell's management is working to support Microsoft's monopoly position with a "sanctioned" and interoperable Linux for niche markets and edge applications.

SCO (Caldera) sought to do this by siezing control of the Linux kernel. And SCO, by the way, received funding from Microsoft. That plan failed.

So now, Novell (with some back pocket money from Microsoft along with other sourcesthat had some linkage to SCO) is pursuing a different approach. Rather than control the kernel directly, Novell is out to control -- and OWN -- "/usr" though their agreements with Microsoft. They intend to allow kernel development to proceeed -- under a cloud Novell helps maintain on contract to Microsoft -- and to herd users into their indemnity and interoperability shelter, mostly for a fee.

And if they succeed at this, they don't really need to worry about interest in Linux faltering over time...if it all collapses because people conclude that FOSS is dying, Novell's board and top executives will be able to bail with a lot of cash, and many of them will find a soft place to land in Microsoft's green pastures.

Now, I doubt they will succeed at this. Frankly, they aren't that smart, and most of the GNU/Linux community has seen through their little game. But there is little reason to reward their stupidity on the grounds that they probably won't be able to get away with what they are trying to do.

Unfortunately though, that is where openSuSE fits into this. People rationalize the decision to use, develop, and promote openSuSE without acknowledging that it does serve as a beta for the Novell product and that it does draw a user base into Novell's orbit and into the Novell/Microsoft deal.

If Novell doesn't like the response to that, or if the openSuSE community feels they take too much heat for it, everyone knows what Novell can do to change it: Break off the deal with Microsoft.

In the mean time, it is both amusing and sad to read and hear weasel words in defense of some pretty craven acts on the part of Novell and wilfull denial of reality on the part of oepnSuSE supporters.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 88.252.56.133] on June 16, 2008 01:41 PM
I use Pardus (new version in a few days) and I like PCLinuxOS:

http://www.pardus.org.tr/eng/index.html
http://www.sibermsn.net

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Re: Forever tainted

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 207.172.203.239] on June 16, 2008 03:17 PM
My first introduction to Suse was a pack in with Quake III Arena for Linux. Genius plan that was, it had me switched from Mandrake to Suse 8.3 pretty much immediately.

The microsoft problem is never going to go away. Most people do not understand the relationship between Suse and Opensuse, nor do they understand the relationship between Novell and Microsoft. Nor do they have any clue how much work has been contributed to the linux community as a whole by the sheer force of will of the Suse community.

I initially thought education would be the answer, but there are reams upon reams of documentation written on the very subject, and we still have trolls claiming that Suse and Microsoft are in bed together.

Suse is one of the very few companies whose releases are actually things to be excited about. Suse, moreso than other companies/distros, will experiment with new methods in the name of progress. I'm really excited about the 11.0 release... and will probably plunk down the cash to pre-order.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 87.254.71.210] on June 16, 2008 10:30 PM
I use openSUSE as my distro of choice on my laptop; stable & worked with Intel wireless some time ago.

I agree with some of the sentiment about the true openness of the project - the licence states you're not allowed to include openSUSE as part of a service etc.
So, if I build a PC for someone, I'm not allowed to install openSUSE, even if I do it for free & have no financial gain.
I can however build the PC, and later give them a copy of openSUSE to install themselves.
Most Linux distros don't have such limitations in their licence AFAIK.
That is a key factor for one which is limiting openSUSE take up.

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 202.80.58.211] on June 17, 2008 12:36 AM
OpenSUSE is not open at all since nobody except Novell can maintain any package within the official repository, not to mention the MS deal that utterly is back stabbing the community and granting patent protection only to customers unlike say Red Hat

http://www.press.redhat.com/2008/06/11/red-hat-puts-patent-issue-to-rest/

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 81.96.59.3] on June 17, 2008 04:13 AM
Wrong, the problem was that you could not directly change packages in factory, but you could always maintain a package in the build service that people decide to have in factory (in which case it can just be linked), and this is the case for some packages (i.e. compiz*). This was a shortcoming of the build service, but now: http://lists.opensuse.org/opensuse-announce/2008-06/msg00008.html

As for "back-stabbing" -- that's just an emotive comment without much base. It's a little curious to presume that something that changes _nothing_ for other free software programmers is Novell "back-stabbing" anyone. The deal benefits Novell as they can fulfill their customers' demands, but it does not impact others in a negative way -- that is pure FUD.

As history also shows, Novell is not only a "friend" of the free software developer, but they employ a _huge_ chunk of the free software developers. As mentioned above, they employ more developers than any other company in the world to work on the very desktop which you are happily using -- the Linux desktop. Nice, isn't it?

Again: http://opensuse.org/FAQ:Novell-MS

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seriously??

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 69.54.119.254] on June 17, 2008 08:18 AM
Sorry, but I had to stop reading this after the first sentence, you might want to lake a look around before you open with a blanket statement like that. You can say it's not very well known to the general public, but even in that domain it's still not least known, maybe significantly less known than say..... Ubuntu which I'm willing to bet money is your distribution of choice, based on the lack of insight that this article more than likely contains. I'm not normally quick to to go down on an open source community member but the blatant idiocy or, at least lack of research displayed in just the first sentence of this article is unacceptable.

Sorry if this is a bit harsh, and I do intend to go back and read the entire article in a few minutes, after I cool down as I was already a little steamed when I started to read the article, and i don't think I would be able to resist the urge to throw things at the screen in my current state-of-mind.

please if the author would like to comment or defend himself or else; then please e-mail me at Trey.mitch@gmail.com

-Signed,
Trey M.
AKA Root-dir
The lord and emperor of the penguins of earth

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Re: seriously??

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 81.96.59.3] on June 17, 2008 03:29 PM
Not sure why everyone's complaining about the community distribution popularity comment. I interpreted it as "openSUSE is less popular than Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian" which is arguable, obviously not the million other distributions on DistroWatch. Seems a little silly to interpret it in that way, right?

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 84.129.87.210] on June 18, 2008 11:07 AM
Suse was a nice distribution, mostly KDE, best support of German. But then the Novell guys came in and ripped it off, polluted it with their own ximian technology and switched it to Gnome. that sucked a lot. I will never forgive Novell for what they have done to us.

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Re: openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 64.147.9.101] on June 18, 2008 05:20 PM
"I will never forgive Novell for what they have done to us."

Last I checked, openSUSE is STILL one of the best distros for KDE and Novell is a primary contributer to KDE development so quit your senseless complaining you whiny little biach!

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 66.187.233.202] on June 20, 2008 12:03 AM
"Wrong, the problem was that you could not directly change packages in factory, "

Then I am right. Nobody outside Novell can maintain official repository packages. Forks in another repository are not official and will causes conflicts.

"As for "back-stabbing" -- that's just an emotive comment without much base. It's a little curious to presume that something that changes _nothing_ for other free software programmers is Novell "back-stabbing" anyone."

Who said it changes nothing? It changes quite a lot. Otherwise why do you see so many complaints? You can't wish the problem away. To understand why it is a problem, listen to Eben Moglen, lawyer for FSF involved with the GPL licensing etc.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YExl9ojclo
http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_%E2%80%9CBe_very_afraid%E2%80%9D_tour

Don't point out petty excuses disguised as FAQs written by employees. Look for Red Hat's patent deal as clear example of what is the right thing to do

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openSUSE's Brockmeier sees distro coming into its own

Posted by: Anonymous [ip: 41.241.149.148] on July 11, 2008 01:42 PM
Not sure why everyone's complaining about the community distribution popularity comment. I interpreted it as "openSUSE is less popular than Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian" which is arguable, obviously not the million other distributions on DistroWatch. http://www.youtube.com/DarrenButeaux Seems a little silly to interpret it in that way, right?

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