[SATLUG] MySQL and Sun Talks about the Open Source risks to MySQL

tweeks tweeks at rackspace.com
Mon Apr 21 11:15:07 CDT 2008

Hey all..

Just FYI.. This is a discussion going on between some of the MySQL User Group 
(just started this month) here in town and a Sun/MySQLAB employee regarding 
the risks of MySQL and it's various open (and closed) source components...  

If you want to join the group, see here:

Not sure where the next meeting's going to be.  The last one was at Rackspace 
HQ (on Datapoint), but there's talk about moving it to Dave & Busters.  

The next meeting sounds like it's going to be comparing and contrasting 
production use of PostgreSQL vs MySQL (both owned by Sun now!).
Join the group list to find out more.


----------  Forwarded Message  ----------

Subject: Re: [mysql-284] Inagural Meeting followup
Date: Thursday 17 April 2008 18:21
From: Matthew Montgomery <matt at day32.com>
To: mysql-284 at meetup.com

On Thu, 2008-04-17 at 12:14 -0400, Vidyut Luther wrote:
> Hey Guys,
>   I think with the following news...
> http://developers.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/04/16/2337224&from=rss
> I think the urgency to get edumacated on Postgres increases, perhaps
> Matt can give us more details than the /. commenters about the
> roadmap.. I'm not too concerned with the "closed source" aspect, as I
> don't know how to code in C or C++, but
> I'm curious what happens to the community edition..and prices.

This is a grossly uninformed /. article and group of posters/pg fan
boys.  MySQL is *NOT* closed sourcing any parts of the the mysqld
server.  No way, no how!  As I explained at the meetup some features to
the online backup API planned for 6.0 may be released as plug-ins under
a closed-source license.

These will include encryption, compression and native (binary) backup
drivers for some engines (a la. ibbackup).  Community editions of mysqld
will continue to be GPL'd as they always have and they will receive the
same online backup API the Enterprise edition gets.  The Sun/MySQL
created plug-ins will interface the same public backup API everyone else
has access to.

If anyone wants to reproduce the proprietary backup modules Sun/MySQL
creates under a different license they are free to do so.  We want to
encourage outside development in and around MySQL to a greater degree
than we have seen to date.  We are trying to encourage additional
OpenSource development with this move not diminish it.

Regarding Daniel's comments:

"I have it on good authority, not at liberty to say who cause they don't
want to go on record, that Jonathan Schwartz was unaware of this change
and the hammer is coming down pretty hard on a few MySQL execs."

I would take this with a grain of salt as well.   1) There is no
"change".  MySQL has always release some products under a closed license
and some under GPL.  2) MySQL has been experimenting with various
revenue models around open source for a while.  The decision to release
some features of the new online backup system as closed source plug-ins
has been discussed and debated (quite hotly at times) internally for
quite a while.  This should not be news to anyone internal to MySQL,
least of all Martin's superiors.  3) Martin had been promised a high
degree of autonomy to continue running the MySQL business unit as he
sees fit.  It's highly unlikely that Schwartz will now come down and
meddle at this level because of this ill-informed rant.

Matthew Montgomery, Support Engineer
Sun Microsystems Inc., Database Group
San Antonio, Texas, USA

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