[nycbug-talk] Apple Releases Darwin 9 Source Code

Isaac Levy ike at lesmuug.org
Sun Nov 11 18:39:58 EST 2007

Hi Miles, All,

After a great deal of recent frustration with Apple's 10.5/Leapord  
release, and a great deal of nit-picking frustration over bugs I  
cannot change, I can't believe I'm going to come to their rescue in  
this thread- but here goes:

On Nov 9, 2007, at 1:48 PM, Miles Nordin wrote:

>>>>>> "jq" == Jeff Quast <af.dingo at gmail.com> writes:
>>> Apple has released the source code to Darwin 9, the underlying
>>> operating system of OS X 10.5
>    jq> they also released 10.4.10's complementary darwin, which was
>    jq> long overdue
> Just wait until someone reports success building it before you trust
> press releases of this kind.  In the past I've seen everyone rabble
> about them ``I think apple <blah blah> needs to <blah> and Steve Jobs
> and <rabble rabble rabble>,'' and then I hear back months later that
> what they released is woefully incomplete and unbuildable.  And
> ``someone'' has been Apple more than once, but of course everybody
> pulls this shit.

Well, I don't want to put words in Apple's mouth, but, I believe they  
don't know how to communicate with the current world we call Open  

It seems to me, that Apple's source repository is in no way meant to  
'be built' for actual use- the Darwin OS as a whole, or the individual  

The Darwin Source release, is to simply open up the source code- which  
is the bare minimum I'd want any commercial vendor (and we rarely  
get).  With this source code one can:

+ Audit any of the listed systems/subsystems
   (to see how something you like or dislike is put together)

+ Independently Fix obscure or specific bugs, (publicly or privately),  
for use within purchased copies of the MacOS.

+ Use as A rough snapshot for developers.

Previously, I don't believe they realized what the (now defunct)  
OpenDarwin project would bring to the Apple table, (e.g. people  
expecting a supported release they could run for use other than  
hacking Darwin).  That is evident as they effectively now have shut  
down the community OS site- it was a hacking platform which people  
took too seriously by itself.

Apple sells their OS, and with this release, they are simply being  
open about the core components- nothing more.  I see this as  
personally useful on 2 levels:

+ Core components that Apple 'hacks' (ssh, for example, in Leaoprd)  
reveal new or different ways of using the software, which one can look  
at closely to modify- (or replace cleanly if one chooses to!)

+ Their *Desktop* Operating System is hands-down more appealing for a  
UNIX shop to deploy than nearly any Windows release, in any  
environment where security, adherence to standards, or other common  
needs are important.

This seems similar to Sun's approach with OpenSolaris, if I'm not  
(Unless Solaris shops have now gone to deploying OpenSolaris on X86 in  
massive production environments that I don't see?  Or UNIX hackers  
even running their personal mail server with OpenSolaris?)

So with that, I don't see a reason to dogg Apple on their source code  
releases- (I see no reason to especially praise them, either...)   
However, I wish Cisco or Microsoft, released the core source code for  
components of their products.

my .02¢
(as an Apple user, whose hands and heart are in the *BSD's)


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