Linked by David Adams on Wed 29th Oct 2008 21:04 UTC, submitted by irbis
Linux Would the internet as we know it exist without Linux? "Absolutely not", says Rich Menga. "Where Linux shines the most is in its server applications". In the 1990's "There were thousands of Mom n' Pop ISPs that operated out of a garage and the vast majority of them were all running Linux. Windows couldn't do it back then and neither could MacOS. What would you have used that you could afford? Netware? Lotus Domino? HP-UX (that requires those refrigerator-sized HP servers)? Linux was literally the only OS out there that had the right price (free), ran similar to a Unix and could use existing computers of the time to connect customers. The internet as we know it today predominantly runs on Linux. There's an extremely high probability that the internet connection you're using right now is connected through a Linux server - and routed through many other Linux servers along the way."
Thread beginning with comment 335571
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
RE[3]: Yes it would
by fsckit on Thu 30th Oct 2008 00:41 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yes it would"
fsckit
Member since:
2006-09-24

While I completely disagree with your assessment of the BSD license, that is a topic for another time. The argument you are using has absolutely nothing to do with the question asked here. Had Linux not been around, BSD could have been used in the cheap server role just as easily. You don't have to write one bit of code to run a server. And even if you develop an app that runs on *BSD, there's nothing saying you have to give it a BSD license.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[4]: Yes it would
by lemur2 on Thu 30th Oct 2008 02:36 in reply to "RE[3]: Yes it would"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

... Had Linux not been around, BSD could have been used in the cheap server role just as easily.


Agreed. BSD is probably better than Linux in a server role.

You don't have to write one bit of code to run a server.


Disagree. You have to write server applications ... such as the LAMP stack itself itself (this could easily have been the BAMP stack instead, I agree) ... but then after that in addition you need AJAX, CUPs, Alfresco, Citadel, OpenChange, Samba, LDAP, NFS, Python, Ruby, symfony, Django, Jena, Pylons, Cappuccino, Durpal, web2py, Helma, jitsu, Lift, Wicket ... just a few examples ... the list is getting quite long by now.

And even if you develop an app that runs on *BSD, there's nothing saying you have to give it a BSD license.


True.

If it were not for the inspiration of the GPL and Linux, however, much of the list of applications above, I believe, would never have even got started.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[5]: Yes it would
by ari-free on Thu 30th Oct 2008 02:46 in reply to "RE[4]: Yes it would"
ari-free Member since:
2007-01-22

"Agreed. BSD is probably better than Linux in a server role. "

since linux was *also* a desktop OS, it was able to gain a lot more mindshare and hardware support and that helped it gain in the server space.

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[5]: Yes it would
by bsdero on Thu 30th Oct 2008 03:27 in reply to "RE[4]: Yes it would"
bsdero Member since:
2005-08-29

But all of these apps exists because the GPL exists too.... And I'm sure that maybe would exists alternative apps to these....

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[4]: Yes it would
by r_a_trip on Thu 30th Oct 2008 13:53 in reply to "RE[3]: Yes it would"
r_a_trip Member since:
2005-07-06

There is a differing factor between the GPL and BSD. Both GPL and (original) BSD code remain open, but the GPL as a copyleft license has a domino effect. Everything you put in, becomes GPL and the whole can never be closed off without consent of all the contributors, which in practice means that the code stays non-proprietary.

The BSD license is very lenient and that is a very good quality, but it tends to "lose" development and contributions, because of proprietary interests. Every distributed and closed source addition to BSD code is not available in the free eco-system (and must be implemented in BSDL code a second time). As a developer you can have valid reasons to allow this, but you'll forgo the avalanche effects of the GPL.

I wonder if IBM, Sun, Novell et all, would have contributed to a BSDL ecosphere as "freely" as they did to the GPL ecosphere. The GPL is a good protection against a competitor taking and running off with your code. GPL is a forced joint venture and a completely level playing field. No one can change the rules mid-game. (Except ALL contributors and the FSF with a new version of the GPL, but that is only in conjunction with the GPL upgrade clause).

Reply Parent Score: 3