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Marten Mickos


Wow - thanks for your suggestions! These are great ideas and something that I hope we will be working on. It shows how the power of open source (+ open debate) can extend to business models.

As for the business model, I realise we may have created a controversy of some sort in our ecosystem. Perhaps we are right or perhaps we are wrong in this particular topic. But we think it is vital that open source companies experiment with various business models. The industry is too young to settle on something that happens to look good at the moment. At MySQL, a key reason for our ability over the years to produce a ton of GPL software (and open some closed products) is that we have always had a functioning business model. As the marke environment changes, we will want to try out new models.

In some postings I have encouraged people to suggest a better business model to us if they are unhappy with what we are doing. Well, you now suggested one, and I very much appreciate it.

Perhaps we should set up an open session (or unconference) on this topic for people to brainstorm together?

formerly CEO of MySQL AB, now SVP at Sun

Eduardo Pelegri-Llopart

Hi Mårten,

An unconference/open session would be very interesting. I think products, market segments and adoption points lead to different best strategies for revenue generation (and sustainability of the community and development).

Definitively not a one-size-fits all.

- eduard/o

Brian Aker


A few thoughts on the cloud:

A database is just a small piece of the infrastructure here. With a lot of work we could create a AWS/GApps environment, but the database is just one piece of a much larger infrastructure. A standalone database is pretty dull (and thin layers have been done by groups like DabbleDB). If you want backup just to S3... I am pretty sure Zmanda has that.

For cloud apps right now I see a dividing line, those who want an open stack, and those who want a hosted apps environment (which BTW Oracle has done for some time now). The Amazon model is really a mix. You can host LAMP stacks on EC2 entirely self contained, or you can make use of the other AWS services. The GApps approach is an entirely hosted application environment.

The question for anyone getting into this side of the business, aka both MySQL and others, is which is the track to follow?


Michael Widenius

Some quick comments:

It was not Sun's idea to do closed extensions. This idea came from the MySQL management and Sun was caught by surprise by it.

I think it's quite clear that the reason Sun bought MySQL AB was to get an even stronger open source offering and also to learn from the things that MySQL AB has done right. Sun is into growing the MySQL business, not in milking the cow business.

Some of the things that you mention in the long tail is what Sun is already doing. Project carolina uses the programming languages Java and Perl, a computing grid and virtualization to provide a hosted platform for scalable Internet services. Currently this uses PostgreSQL but it will shortly also offer MySQL support.

I totally agree that it's vital for MySQL to keep the community alive! In my recent talk at the 2008 MySQL conference I pointed out that we need to change the development model to make it more community driven.

There are very few successful projects with closed source components that have an active community; The community usually doesn't want to participate in creating an software offering that they can't use them self!

You can find more things about this topic on my blog at: http://monty-says.blogspot.com

Former CTO of MySQL AB, now with Sun's CTO Organisation

Mike Masnick

Hey there,

Btw, you link to my article at Techdirt, but you call it TechCrunch. Please note that those are two totally separate and different sites.

MTG: oooops, 'course, fixed. :)


Great article and interesting site! You've got some worthwhile ideas. Thanks!

Ezekiel the forex trading guy

great indepth view on sun, mysql. And even seeing a former ex ceo of mysql commenting. Thanks, it shows your big your blog is.

Creative Trademark Search

these are some really good ideas and it's impressive list of people who have commented and listened.

But as a trademark search professional, I'm not sure that they would ever pass the trademark to Redhat. That's a big part of the allure.

Jean Diaz

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