January 2011

Welcome to Jenkins CI!


(This was sent as an email to the Hudson dev and users mailing lists after voting concluded, but I thought it'd be good to post it here as well.)

The vote is closed, and the results are in. More than half of the total votes were from ineligible voters, but the result would have been the same either way. The final result of all eligible votes is as follows: 214 votes to rename, and 14 for the status quo. You can see the individual votes hudson-jenkins-vote.

Hudson's future

First, my apologies for the lack of updates on the Hudson/Oracle situation for the last few weeks. While talks have been ongoing, the holidays have slowed things down, and we didn't want to send out information that would later turn out not to be true. We've been waiting for the talks to reach a resolution - and I believe they now have.

Since the java.net migration problems, Oracle and representatives from the Hudson community have been involved in talks on the future of the project in a number of areas. The Hudson representatives have been myself, Kohsuke Kawaguchi, and Sacha Labourey (CEO of CloudBees and Kohsuke's boss), who was brought in to help provide experience with discussions on a corporate/executive level which neither Kohsuke nor I have, with Alan Harder and R. Tyler Croy advising on the side.

These talks have in many ways been fruitful - we came to working agreements with Oracle on the project infrastructure (such as mailing lists and SCM repository location), code review policy for Hudson core, and perhaps most significantly, a governance structure for the project going forward. Some issues are not yet entirely resolved, such as questions on restrictions on third party dependency licenses. But one issue, which we feel is the most significant issue of all, one for which we now believe no resolution is possible: the rights to the name Hudson.

Oracle has told us that they have trademark applications filed in both the EU and US for Hudson, based on Hudson's creation by Kohsuke while working at Sun. The problem is that this trademark ownership gives Oracle the ability to revoke the Hudson project's right to call itself Hudson at any time, and while Oracle has made an attempt to offer some guarantees (most notably, that binary releases of Hudson, once they've been released with the name Hudson attached, will always retain the right to the name), they are not offering any binding guarantee that the Hudson project will be able to retain its use of the name in perpetuity.

Therefore, to continue using the name Hudson means ceding some of the project's independence to Oracle - if the project and its governance board opted to go in a direction Oracle disapproved of, Oracle would be able to take away the naming rights. Or, in a less dramatic scenario, Oracle could insist on certain changes to the code, infrastructure decisions, process, etc, regardless of opposition from the Hudson development community, in order to retain the rights to the name.

In short, we'd be living under a sword of Damocles, regardless of the goodwill of the individuals we've been negotiating with at Oracle - Hudson as a project would be beholden to Oracle's whims for its continued use of its own name, and we believe that's not viable.

Installing plugins has always been easy, now it's fast too!

As one of the "men behind the scenes" of the Hudson project, a lot of my contributions tend to be in writing articles or handling infrastructure, anything to ensure folks like Kohsuke can continue to make Hudson great without being distracted by inane system administration tasks. This past week, one of my long-running infrastructure projects has finally "gone live," making downloads of plugins and packages faster than ever!

Some number of months ago I became frustrated with the download speeds reported by our international users, while the majority of Hudson's infrastructure is all colocated inside of the United States, there is a huge number of Hudson users and developers who are both in Europe and Asia.

After discussing things with some of the folks that run download.opensuse.org, a MirrorBrain powered redirector, I set out to build something similar. A mirroring network which could be easily managed and help direct users' downloads to the geographically closest and fastest mirror available.

Where are we mirrored?

Currently we have mirrors in a few locations within the United States, and one overseas:

Using the mirrors

If you've updated or installed plugins from within Hudson lately, guess what! You're already using mirrors! In fact, since we flipped the switch on January 7th, over 800 plugins and 600 hudson.war updates have been downloaded from the mirroring network!