Juniper Networks and Cisco made announcements last week that were related to open sourcing their router operating systems, but hardly anything concrete has come through.
This week’s announcements had nothing to do with open source. Juniper is allowing third parties to develop applications for its JUNOS operating system, but only those third parties that it approves of. That’s a long way from open source. It’s approaching the level of open-ness we’ve always had with DOS and Windows.
And Cisco’s promise is less than that — it’s simply vapor, designed to make the company look good while its analyst event is under way.
Vyatta, the networking company that open sourced its operating system code on the Web two years ago, follows the extensible open-source routing platform.
The transition from proprietary models to open frameworks is huge. Perhaps Cisco and Juniper are taking the route well used by Apple for the promotion of its iPhone development, or this could be the beginning of the transition from proprietary to open models.
Will major technology giants take the bold step to open sourcing in all its spirit?