VA Linux's SourceForge Talk of Show at The BazaarDec 18, 1999, 22:16 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Emmett Plant)
By Emmett Plant
While I was wandering the expo floor at The Bazaar in New York City, I stopped by the VA Linux booth to see what was going on. I assumed I would find several people carrying large money bags around, but I found something a lot cooler -- SourceForge!
SourceForge is a web resource for Open Source projects and organizations. With a truly astounding amount of hardware and bandwidth at their disposal, SourceForge seems extremely well placed to become the most important community resource we've seen yet. SourceForge is paid for and staffed by VA Linux, the selfsame Open Source company that made a ton of cash on their IPO just a week ago.
If you've got an Open Source project, look at SourceForge before you start running your own services. SourceForge is a complete success on the organizational level and the services it provides are unbeatable. CVS, mailing lists, public forums, the ability to poll visitors and project members, bug tracking and anonymous FTP, as well as the feeling of being part of a larger community merely by being part of SourceForge. Don't forget another extremely cool thing; full backups, and the ability to check the logs from the archiver program!
All systems counted, the combined processor speed of SourceForge is 11.4Gz, 9.5 gigs of ram, and 1.34 terabytes of storage (after RAID). The breakdown of this incredible horsepower is available at SourceForge's hardware page.
A lot of great community projects have already moved or mirrored services to SourceForge. Projects like Crystal Space, Licq, and The Berlin Project have signed on, and even the SourceForge development tools are available! The main page lists the current 'favorites' based on a score from one to five that anyone can vote on.
Not only is SourceForge a great resource for Open Source projects, it's a great resource for anyone interested in seeing how Open projects come to fruition in their own environment. I'm sure that before long, someone will write their master's thesis on SourceForge as the grapevine by which Open Source projects ripen. It used to be difficult to find 'sponsorship' for Open Source projects. Often, there were two or three guys working on a project over IRC on 56k dialups, trying to build a good web site for the project out of five megs of webspace from their ISP. Now the sky's the limit, and we can only benefit from it.
At The Bazaar, SourceForge was one of the 'talks of the show.' All of a sudden, finding and joining an Open Source project became a lot easier, and the initiates that attended the show were certainly interested after hearing keynotes preach about Open Source and the future of technology. Conversations that used to end with 'we can host it on my site for now, and then move it later,' ended with '...so we'll get our SourceForge acount set up this week, and we'll be ready to go.' It's good to see that VA Linux's community sponsorship hasn't faded given their recent success. Keep up the good work, guys!