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12 January 2011, 12:55

No agreement with Oracle: Hudson will probably become Jenkins

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The main contributors to Hudson – an open source continuous integration technology, popular with Java developers – intend to ask the community for its blessing before changing the name to 'Jenkins' and re-locating to a new code repository on GitHub.

The developers say in their statement that they propose Jenkins as the new name because it "evokes the same sort of English butler feel as Hudson". They don't consider the decision a fork, as the technology's founder and former Sun / Oracle employee, Kohsuke Kawaguchi, has committed to exclusively support the reorientation. For his fellow Hudson protagonist Andrew Bayer, who has now released a statement about the project's future, this means that Jenkins will become the true home of the technology.

The changes were triggered by the community being dissatisfied with the infrastructure requirements on Oracle's and Kenai project hosting web sites. The resulting discussions with the company lead last November to the Hudson community relocating first the tracking system and then the mailing list. They even considered creating an independent fork. Oracle had responded by pointing out that it acquired the trademarks to the name when it took over Sun.

Since then, several key members of the Hudson community have been in negotiations with Oracle. However, the Hudson representatives didn't manage to convince Oracle that the name of Hudson would be in good hands under "neutral custody". They still maintain that the trademarks to the name should not have been transferred to Oracle.

As a first step, the community representatives have registered domains, Twitter names, etc., for Jenkins, and Kawaguchi will trademark the name. The trademarks are planned to be transferred, later, to the Software Freedom Conservancy, the independent organisation for the protection of FLOSS software. As a second step, the developers plan to remove the CI system's infrastructure from all Oracle servers, and the name of Hudson from all infrastructure components (such as mailing lists, GitHub repositories, etc.) Finally, an interim governance board is planned to lead the project for three to six months until the new structure has become established well enough to elect new board members.

Apart from Andrew Bayer and Kohsuke Kawaguchi, Oracle's Winston Prakash has been invited to join this interim governance board. However, Bayer writes that Oracle will probably first present their own proposal concerning the future of Hudson.


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