An Unknown Indian

Thoughts of a FOSS enthusiast

Sun microsystems…

Posted by Balachandran on February 1, 2007

Hello folks, back with some solaris stuff again, this time with a bit of difference. We had a session on Sun microsystems, its histroy and activities . The session was handled by the Sun’s students’ ambassador for our college, Krithika. The session started with what is Sun microsystems and who started it and when was it started and all that. We learnt that Sun was started by three stanford university guys, Vinodh koshla, Bill Joy, Andreas Bechtolsheim(I got this from the comment made below by one of my seniors) and Scott McNealy. A brief history of activities of Sun were mentioned.

Then the talk moved on to various important Open Source products from Sun microsystems. First, the Netbeans IDE was mentioned and is salient feature discussed. But, personally, I am against the use of IDEs and such stuff. But Netbeans seems to be interesting from the list of features that were displayed. Then we moved on to solaris or rather opensolaris. The whole audience were captured by the words “Solaris is the most powerful Operating System on earth”. A brief history of UNIX development and the contribution of Sun microsystems to that were given. Then the contibution of this mighty company to FOSS was also mentioned.

Various features like predictive self healing, ZFS, SMF, Dtrace were given a brief insight. It was decided that, after the formation of the Sun club, classes will conducted at regular intervals on all these topics and more. Finally, a small demo of dtrace was made to all students batch by batch. The demo was run by very very simple scripts like open system call and read system call. The audience were really interested and were keen to learn more on this. The one of the scripts that was run is
#dtrace -n ‘syscall::read*:entry{printf(“%s”,execname);}’

Using this, mouse movements were detected and the read system call changed from one process to another. It was really cool. Likewise, open system call was also dtraced and the output observed for various activities done.

The one unfortunate thing was that, the projector was not detected by the solaris and hence we had to make the presentations using a Linuxmachine. Hope we sort it out soon and make use of the projector from solaris soon.

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3 Responses to “Sun microsystems…”

  1. Sun was started by four guys in fact. You missed Andreas Bechtolsheim. He was and *is* the greatest hardware engineer on earth. The tales of his hardware design and vision are the stuff of legends.

  2. Oh thanks. I never knew that. But the wikipedia page on Sun Microsystems does not mention his name at all!!! Anyway, thanks, I will update it now.

  3. Wikipedia has been mentioning it for ages 😉

    The initial design for what became Sun’s first Unix workstation was conceived by Andy Bechtolsheim when he was a graduate student at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California.

    Andy is the spiritual founder of the company more than the other three !

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