Hosting Services and free software

I’ve started a new series, through the Free Software Magazine newsletter, on the use of open source technology by hosting services, including the ready-to-run applications such as WordPress, phpBB and Gallery. The aim is to look at these individual products and how they can provide a quick and easy solution to building your websites, communities and brand. The first in the series, an overview of FOSS technology in hosting services, can be read here. You can also subscribe and get the newsletters sent to you automatically. Subscription is free once you’ve filled in a form

Beyond The Big Three BSDs, BSD Alternatives

A while back I wrote an article for that covered the three main BSD distributions; FreeBSD, OpenBSD and NetBSD. The article looked at the ‘other’ free software operating system range (BSD) and how it compared to Linux. I also looked at Mac OS X (or more specifically Darwin), which is based on NetBSD.After writing that piece I was contacted by a few people who wanted to point out that there are some other BSD variants available. So I started looking around. BSD variants are much harder to come by in comparison to the hundreds (probably thousands) of different Linux-based distributions available. The resulting piece is available now. I started writing this piece many months ago, and since then OpenSolaris has been released. Perhaps a comparison between OpenSolaris, Linux and BSD is in order – let me know if you’d like to see this.

OpenSolaris and Linux

Regular readers will know I am both a fan of Linux and Solaris, for different reasons and, often, different solutions and environments. Back at the beginning of October I wrote this mammoth piece on my Computerworld blog: Distributions and standardization. It looks at the movement of Linux (an open source OS) towards a standardized base just at a time when OpenSolaris has been released, an OS based on standards that is now open source. There’s the potential here for OpenSolaris to have the advantage over Linux in this regard. I was asked by Computerworld to condense that piece down into an article to appear in the printed magazine, which now appears online as OpenSolaris Has a Leg Up on Linux. The latter has solicited more comments (directly by email) than the blog post, but the common thread is the same – Solaris may have an advantage, but it could be its only one. I’m not here to take sides, merely to point out the situation – I always will choose the operating system according to its target use and environment – but the OpenSolaris/Linux debate is going to be an interesting one to watch.