Another 6 months have passed and we are proud to announce the release of our 2021.10 snapshot. The images are available at the usual place. As usual we have automatically received all updates that have been integrated into illumos-gate.
The new images are interesting for people with newer hardware that hasn’t been supported in the past. There is no necessity to re-install from newer images as OpenIndiana Hipster is a rolling release and will bring all updates with a simple call of “pfexec pkg update -v”.
That’s all there’s to it, as there are no further details or release notes at this point, and I’m not well-versed enough in the world of Solaris and OpenIndiana and similar offshoots to provide more details myself.
Is this really good for anything? Like “dev desktop for language X” or “server for Y”?
I kept some hope for Open Solaris in the old days in Sun and Oracle (you could build a pretty good Java developer desktop with it, our team event picked some pieces of code from packaging system of Open Solaris to use in an other product…) but now I am not sure if there are any real advantages.
I still have many Solaris servers at work. We have commercial licenses from Oracle. We keep looking to replace the machines with Linux but there keep being good technical reasons to stick with Solaris. In fact, we recently purchased a half dozen off-lease Oracle servers and are bringing new Solaris machines on to our network, much to my surprise.
OpenIndiana is Solaris without the need for Oracle licenses. (Or the benefits of Oracle support.)
I am relieved that there are enough people keeping an Open Source Solaris up to date. I could see us shifting some of our hardware from Oracle Solaris to OpenIndiana over time. Also, even after Oracle stops supporting Solaris, OpenIndiana gives a path for users and ensures that some of the great ideas that Sun developed and then opened can live on. (Until they are hopefully adopted, adapted, copied, or otherwise integrated into the omnivore of ideas that is Linux and the BSDs.)
As for this particular OpenIndiana release, I haven’t used it much over the years but this release seems like exactly what I would want in a Solaris machine: rock solid base, current userland. It’s relatively trivial compared to the overall OS but I am glad that OpenIndiana devs have stuck with MATE instead of moving to GNOME 3 like Oracle did with Solaris 11.4. Even just playing around with a VM for a bit, I already like it more than using the commercial version of Solaris.
This is really short release note document. R.I.P. Solaris – operating system relegated to Oracle license bound
environments and pretty much nobody else.