OpenNMS in LinuxPro Magazine

In the February edition of LinuxPro Magazine there is a nice article on OpenNMS.

Called “Big Time“, the author Kurt Seifried discusses using OpenNMS to monitor very large networks.

It is a pretty positive article. The only complaint I can raise is that it was against OpenNMS 1.9, which is our development release. In the section “What’s Wrong with OpenNMS” he quite fairly raises some issues with IPv6 support, but that code is definitely alpha and will be much better by the time 1.9 becomes 1.10.

Other than that, it is obvious that the author spent some time with the software and really “kicked the tires”. I am hoping that the article causes a few more people to check out our work.

Open Source for Sale

I have been asked to submit a monthly column to on running an open source business, based on the other two columns I have written for them.

The current column was published today, and it addresses setting prices for open source services. The next four I have queued up in my head are the open source sales process, business tools, when customers don’t pay and copyright assignment.

I hope folks find them useful.

I Like Traffic Lights

I am constantly amazed at the uses our users find for OpenNMS.

We just posted an interview with John Jennery, IT Manager of the City of Grapevine, Texas. Grapevine is the city just outside of Dallas/Fort Worth which is where the airport is located, so if you have ever flown through DFW you’ve been there.

In addition to normal IT management tasks, John uses OpenNMS to monitor the traffic light system for the town. You might not think that is such a big deal, but its importance becomes clear when you realize that this year a rare snowstorm hit the city just as 150,000 people arrived for the Super Bowl.

Check it out, and many thanks to John for letting us post his story.

Just a Quick Update

I have just returned from visiting the gang over at the Indiana Linux Fest in preparation for tomorrow’s conference. It looks like it’s going to be a great time, and I am humbled that they asked me to be the keynote speaker. I hope I don’t disappoint.

In other news, I finally have time to comment on a 451 Group post by Matt Aslett this week called “When commercial open source goes bad“.

To me, their new report on proprietary companies going open source (and in some cases failing) echoes some of my sentiment that “fauxpen source” as a business model is dead.

Specifically, I liked this paragraph:

Meanwhile one of the prominent “open source” systems management vendors appears to have removed all mention of its Community Edition software from its website, while the Community Edition itself has not been updated for 15 months. While the project is not officially “dead” it is, to say the least, “pining for the fjords” and the company in question could be said to be open source in name only.

Although they don’t call out Groundwork Open Source by name, some of my three readers may remember my post from last year about Groundwork deciding to stop publishing their “community” or open source version. According to Sourceforge it hasn’t been updated since December of 2009 (so much for release early, release often). Back then, when I asked Tara Spalding, Groundwork’s Chief Marketing Officer, about the rumor that the open source version was dead, she replied:

That is untrue, and the rumor mill is pretty lame.

I’ve noticed that Tara is no longer with Groundwork, and the rumor mill seems to have been validated.

But still, this morning, Roberto Galoppini posted on his blog about “open source webinars” and included Groundwork, when it is obvious that Groundwork can no longer be considered open source in any real fashion. I asked him about it, but my comment is still waiting moderation as I write this so I’m not sure if he’s seen my question.

I think that most proprietary companies will adopt some form of open source in the next few years, but it is one thing to use open source and/or provide some open source code and another to advertise yourself as an open source company. As an end user, you have to ask yourself if you want to use a product by a company whose marketing is that misleading.

I’m betting you won’t.