[lsb-discuss] LSB conf call notes for 2008-04-02

Jeff Licquia jeff at licquia.org
Wed Apr 2 09:19:12 PDT 2008

Attendees: Carlos Duclos and Jesper Thomschultz from TrollTech; Mats 
Wichmann, LSB workgroup member of long standing and Intel employee; Stew 
Benedict, developer for the LF; Dan Kohn, LF Chief Operating Officer; 
Sam Hart, developer for the LF; Darren Davis, software support manager 
for Novell (did I get that right?); Alexey Khoroshilov, manager of LSB 
project for ISPRAS; Joseph Kowalski, LSB Sun community contact for Java; 
Russ Herrold from SpikeSource; Ted Ts'o, LF technical manager; Jeff 
Licquia, developer for the LF.

Introduce Joseph Kowalski.  At Sun almost 20 years; project lead for 
SunOS 5/Solaris 2.  Started working in Java a few years ago.  Would like 
to see more uniform installation of Java.  Sun and LSB pretty much 
aligned.  JCK is being worked on.  Ted: Java certification is a serious 
issue.  Java as part of the installation system, also enterprise apps 
which require a particular JVM, also small to medium apps which work 
with all JVMs.  How do we say that the LSB includes Java that meet those 
goals?  Could require distros to ship a "JVM"; problem with community 
distros because of certification requirements.  Could certify a 
LSB-compliant JVM; is that possible under the Java rules?  Joseph: can 
act as liasion, get to right people.  Sun's position: not high on list, 
not many resources.  But, if we don't engage now, it could be painful 
later.  On JCK: any JVM can be certified by sending a request to Sun. 
Two major stipulations: must be predominantly based on OpenJDK (which 
most are), and you can't say "94% compliant": compliant or not.  This 
should be sufficient to certify a completely open source JDK.  Ted: can 
you send us the link?  Joseph: should be prominent on OpenJDK site, will 
send it by tomorrow.  Jeff: commuity distros can do builds and certify 
as needed w/o hassle?  Joseph: yes.  Java only; JDK 7 will include newer 
stuff, like Java Web Start.  Can't speak for the distros or other JVMs, 
but there should be no roadblocks for 100% certified, open source Java 
this calendar year.  Still concerns; standard needs two implementations. 
  Dan: Sun's strategy to closed test suite?  Joseph: closed, available 
but not free, more of a tracking thing from Sun's perspective, tied to 
OpenJDK.  Ted: JCK license will be "free as in beer", can only use it to 
test an implementation derived from OpenJDK?  Joseph: key is what "based 
on" means.  100% black-box implementation wouldn't probably work, but 
Sun intends to be rather liberal.  Could possibly do it now, but the 
rules are still unclear.  Jeff: good long-term LSB strategy then would 
be to require a Sun-compliant Java in distros, using this certification 
strategy?  Joseph: yes.  Ted: not specify the policy, just the result. 
Russ: right now, there are two alternatives for Java: closed-source with 
indemnification (not suitable) and open-source (not complete).  So, no 
current solution for CentOS.  Jeff: right, this is a long-term strategy. 
  Ted: timeline?  Joseph: goal is to get OpenJDK into Ubuntu main.  Ted: 
8.10 means complete by mid-year.  Joseph: more likely fall than summer. 
  Ted: could start going down this path, make a decision end-of-year. 
Maybe Java becomes trial-use.

Jeff: short term strategy?  Idea is to get the JVMs certified to the 
LSB.  This is currently prohibited by Sun's policy; certification tied 
to the service pack level of the distro used.  Joseph: not sure if 
that's entirely correct, can find out.  May not be so picky on the 
service pack/update level.  Ted: may also depend on who you talk to; 
overcautious.  Would be nice to allow certification to the abstract LSB 
platform.  Joseph: question of trust.  How much would Sun trust the LSB 
to be stable enough?  SunOS/Solaris ABI compliance wasn't even 100% 
(discrepancy on page size assumptions).  Joseph is not qualified to give 
an answer.  Ted: could require more effort and conversation to make that 
happen.  Joseph: can't hold "LSB" in your hand; can hold RHEL 5 or SLES 
10.  Ted: we are expanding our tests.  Can also happen at the app level. 
  Jeff: question is, can we meet the confidence level Sun would require? 
  Joseph: do we need it?  Distro tests their JDK; LSB accepts that. 
Maybe we don't need anything more than that.  Jeff: what about apps that 
require a specific JVM?  Ted: example: Lotus Notes is bundled with a 
specific IBM JVM; Ted runs it on Debian, on which the IBM JVM is not 
certified.  Users are doing that unsupported; can we make that better? 
Joseph: how to handle multiple JVMs on a single box?  Ted: each app 
comes with its own bundled JVM.  Joseph: then the Java certification is 
irrelevant; the whole app (including the JVM) becomes a LSB issue as-is. 
  Ted: yes, correct; we'd like to make that possible.  Make it possible. 
  Robert: is a short-term goal, we're close, will Sun certify?  Ted: two 
problems--will the rules allow it, and will the JVM vendors do it? 
Robert: question is, will Sun be willing?  What effort will Sun put into 
it?  Joseph: common case is that the distro ships a trustworthy JRE.  If 
the JRE is bundled, the app can do its own LSB certification.  Java cert 
is irrelevant.  Believes that it is a desireable attribute for a JVM to 
be LSB-compliant, because it will make the ISV's life easier.  Jeff: can 
such an app be called a "Java app"?  Joseph: isn't it just "Lotus Notes" 
or whatever?  Ted: what about the Java trademark issue?  Joseph: issue 
between the JVM vendor and Sun, and the app vendor and the LSB.

Jeff: out of time.  Should continue the conversation.  Please review 
posted call notes and correct the record.  Also, should continue the 
conversation on the mailing list.

Jeff: next week is the LF Collaboration Summit; no call.  Next LSB call 
will be two weeks from today.

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