"Open source startups are changing the rules of the traditional enterprise software market. At least that's what a panel made up of MySQL, JBoss, SugarCRM and XenSource heads and moderated by VA Software chairman Larry Augustin was happy to proclaim loudly and clearly."
Doing some research recently I came across the above opening paragraph in a four-year-old story about LinuxWorld. But by the time this article was written in 2006, the "revoultion of open source against enterprise software" was already over as I explained in this 2008 retrospective about 2006-2007 enterprise software market developments.
And both 'sides' won as explained in the retrospective and as illustrated by looking back at the 2006 article:
- Of course everyone knows what happened to MySQL. It moved to historically closed Sun in 2008 -- which had recently adopted open source terms and conditions itself --and later to Oracle (ORCL). There is some question about how dedicated to open source Oracle is but Oracle announced as part of its June 24 earnings call that it has signed up over 5000 Linux users as part of its Red Hat (RHAT) attack program. There's nothing like those kind of numbers to help Oracle get religion.
- Speaking of long-time open source culture and terms-and-conditions leader Red Hat, it acquired JBoss shortly after that 2006 LinuxWorld conference. According to Red Hat's recent earnings announcement, the middleware portion part of its business is doing well. One of the advantages behind Red Hat JBoss middleware success up and down the stack is that it is agnostic (actually I think irreligious the better word) about the underlying operating software. It runs on Windows as well as Linux.
- XenSource has gone to 'closed' Citrix (CTXS) and VA Software sold its open-source-related software business to Collabnet and became a publishing house. Its sourforge site is still the place to go for forging or just downloading open source software however. Collabnet had always been irreligious. At Sugar not much has happened. But it has managed to tread water through difficult economic times. It is waiting for better days to execute the long awated IPO.
It's hard to put an exact date on this trend of closed and open source terms and conditions merging but it could be timed to IBM acquiring Gluecode in 2005 (or even to IBM heavily funding Apache in 1998). Even Microsoft (MSFT) got on the bandwagon starting in 2006 when it noticed the amount of open source software running on Windows (probably most but the stats are skethcy).
And as for LinuxWorld itself, it's hard to tell from my old employer's website. But it looks like, as with all good tradeshow/conferences, it didn't die but morphed into Cloudworld.
-- Dennis Byron
(No financial interest in companies mentioned. I have recently done research for Red Hat some of which is reflected in this white paper available on Red Hat's web site.)