Apple’s Jordan Hubbard joins iXsystems

FreeBSD Co-Founder Wraps Up Historic Tenure at Apple to Become iXsystems CTO 

iXsystems announced today that one of the original founders of FreeBSD, Jordan Hubbard, is joining iXsystems. More information can be found in the press release that was sent out:

Freebsd_Jordan_HubbardXsystems, Inc. is delighted to welcome Jordan Hubbard, former Director of UNIX Technology at Apple, as Chief Technical Officer. Hubbard will lead engineering and development at iXsystems, take the reins of FreeNAS (the wildly popular open source storage platform) and work to bring the TrueNAS Unified Storage Appliance to a wider audience by adding new capabilities, such as object storage, simpler cloud integration, and high-performance real-time data de-duplication, to name a few. He will also work to create future products and services which better serve the needs of emerging enterprise and consumer markets.

At Apple, Hubbard led the development of many BSD and Unix technologies at the core of Mac OS X and iOS over the last 12 years. His primary areas of focus were on modernizing the Unix platform, creating better and more fundamental security technologies, increasing performance and power efficiency, and tirelessly promoting the common interests and exchange of technologies between the OSS community and Apple.

With Hubbard’s knowledge and decades of experience, iXsystems is poised to expand further into the enterprise storage market, increasing support for industry standards while continuing to develop new and innovative technology. TrueNAS Unified Storage is already used around the world supporting big data, virtualization, and cloud computing infrastructures and, under Hubbard’s leadership, TrueNAS will further solidify its position as the most powerful and easy to use storage option on the market.

“I’m very excited to have this opportunity to help guide iXsystems through its next phase of professional and technological development. This is not just a great opportunity for me to be part of a company known for its strong support of FreeBSD and other open source software, but I’m also looking forward to helping it achieve new levels of success with the TrueNAS storage appliance and having the opportunity to create future innovative products.”

says Hubbard.

Hubbard and iXsystems are connected through the FreeBSD Project and many years of history. Hubbard co-founded the FreeBSD project in 1993 and was a long-time executive employee of iXsystems’ corporate ancestors, BSDi and Walnut Creek CD-ROM. BSDi became iXsystems in 2001, and Walnut Creek became the FreeBSD Mall in 2002, before re-joining iXsystems in 2005.

iXsystems is a champion of FreeBSD, making both financial and technical contributions to the project as well as running the FreeBSD Mall and representing FreeBSD at open-source conferences and trade shows around the world. Hubbard is the ideal figure to lead the development of FreeBSD-based systems at iXsystems and spearhead the company’s contributions to FreeBSD, carrying on the long tradition of being a leading supporter of the open source community.

Matt Olander, Co-founder and CTO Emeritus of iXsystems, is thrilled to welcome Jordan back to the iX family.

“Apple has a well-deserved reputation for making some of the highest quality, easiest to use products in the world, and we’re thrilled to have someone with this kind of experience join our team in a leadership role. No one else has Jordan’s enthusiasm and skill for bringing great technology to a wide audience, and his long history with us and with FreeBSD makes bringing him on board just that much sweeter. We’re looking forward to a grand new era of innovation, and Jordan will help lead the way!”

Jordan Hubbard will assume the duties of iXsystems CTO on July 15, 2013.

FreeBSD based Orbis OS powering Sony PS4

vgleaks has discovered that the new Sony Playstation 4 will be powered by Orbis OS, a modified version of FreeBSD 9.0. The modifications include new or optimised drivers for AMD’s 8-core CPU and Radeon GPU combination. This is not something that FreeBSD currently supports in the form of a Catalyst driver, and indicates that Sony and AMD are working on this together.

I guess that Sony decided to use FreeBSD as the engine due to the more liberal BSD license. Unlike the Cell-based PS3, the PS4 is x86-64 based which makes it easier to use FreeBSD.

I think Sony’s choice of FreeBSD is an excellent one.

Sony_PS4-FreeBSD2

Sony_PS4-FreeBSD3

 

 

 

FreeBSD, 20 years young

freebsd-birthday-20-yearsFreeBSD celebrates its 20th birthday this week. On 19 June 1993, David Greenman, Jordan Hubbard and Rod Grimes  announced the creation of their new fork of the BSD 4.3 operating system, and its new name: FreeBSD

 

To: interim@bsd.coe.montana.edu (Interim 0.1.5)
Subject: Re: “386BSD” trademark (fwd)
From: David Greenman <davidg@implode.rain.com>
Date: Sat, 19 Jun 93 17:26:02 -0700

> Okay folks.. taking new name suggestions.. we have:
>
> BSDFree86 – Rod, who is going with Jordans improved NON BSDI name..
> Free86BSD – Jordan, Rod likes this one two…
> – (F86BSD for short)
>
> vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv
>                v                                                                     v
>                v          This is the hat to drop yours in!       v
>                v                                                                     v
>                vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv

How about just simply “FreeBSD”? No confusion, no fuss, seems like a good compromise to me. :-)

-DG

To read more about FreeBSD’s history, have a look here (freebsd.org) and here (wikipedia).

PC-BSD Status Update – the future

PC-BSD LogoKris, the PC-BSD founder and lead developer, has set out his plan on the PC-BSD Developers mailinglist for the upcoming version(s) of PC-BSD.

In a nutshell:

  • PKGNG repos will be updated at a set day in the month
  • PC-BSD will come with the GRUB bootloader
  • ZFS is going to be the cornerstone of PC-BSD
  • PC-BSD is going to be release as 64bit only (drops i386 platform)

make ZFS the cornerstone of the PC-BSD/TrueOS experience. This will bring features such as ZFS “Boot-Environments”, including the ability to boot directly
from them at the boot-loader. [...] Re-focusing on solely on ZFS as our default file-system [...]

… we’ve decided to drop the i386 builds going forward, and instead
focus on a single 64bit architecture.

I understand Kris reasons for moving on (ZFS, 64bit only), but I can see that a number of current PC-BSD users with slower and/or i386 systems will feel left behind.

Will this affect you?

FreeBSD Security Advisory: mmap

software-bug-signThe FreeBSD Security Team has identified an issue in mmap and has issued the following security advisory: FreeBSD-SA-13:06.mmap (18/06/2013).

The FreeBSD virtual memory system allows files to be memory-mapped. All or parts of a file can be made available to a process via its address space. The process can then access the file using memory operations rather than filesystem I/O calls.

The ptrace(2) system call provides tracing and debugging facilities by allowing one process (the tracing process) to watch and control another (the traced process).

Due to insufficient permission checks in the virtual memory system, a tracing process (such as a debugger) may be able to modify portions of the traced process’s address space to which the traced process itself does not have write access.

This error can be exploited to allow unauthorized modification of an arbitrary file to which the attacker has read access, but not write access. Depending on the file and the nature of the modifications, this can result in privilege escalation.

For a solution, check out the security advisory: FreeBSD-SA-13:06.mmap

FreeBSD miscellaneous links (nginx, freebsd snapshots, HAST, virtio)

These are a couple of random FreeBSD related links you may find interesting:

How to Install Nginx on FreeBSD 9.x

nginx (pronounced “engine x”) is an open-source web server and a reverse proxy server for HTTP, SMTP, POP3, and IMAP protocols, with a strong focus on high concurrency, performance and low memory usage. [Read More - unixmen.com]

New FreeBSD snapshots and virtual machine disk images

New FreeBSD development branch installation ISOs and virtual machine
disk images have been uploaded to the FTP mirrors.

Read More - lists.freebsd.org]

Install HAST on FreeNAS

FreeNAS is awesome, but until recently it lacked HAST (Highly Available STorage). Fortunately now TrueNAS allows for this function to work. HAST is integrated into the FreeBSD base system, in turn HAST can be added into FreeNAS manually.

[Read More - hub.org]

Speed up FreeBSD KVM guests using Virtio

The virtio framework allows guest operating systems running under the Linux KVM hypervisor to take advantage of near-native I/O performance. It works by providing kernel drivers for the guest OS which only work from within a KVM host, exposing I/O functionality through a much thinner layer of code than the traditional full-on emulation of physical hardware. The less code there is between a virtualized guest OS and the host’s physical hardware, the faster things will go.

[Read More - area536.com]

Generating custom FreeBSD installation media

Generating a custom -current memstick image without all the debug feature enabled.

[Read More - blog.cochard.me]

Creating and starting VirtualBox machine with PowerShell

BSD Router Project provided a VBScript for starting MS Windows based virtualbox lab. But because this vbs script works only on XP, I had to found a more powerful solution: Why not discovering PowerShell and using the VirtualBox COM API ?

[Read More - blog.cochard.me]

 

BSD Magazine (June 2013): FreeBSD on Rails

June’s issue of the BSD Magazine is now available: FreeBSD on Rails (free PDF download).

FreeBSD Mag June 2013You’ll find the following subjects inside:

  • A backup server with FreeBSD for mixed networks in SOHO environment
  • Keep OpenBSD customers satisfied
  • FreeBSD in Xen Cloud Platform (XCP)
  • FreeBSD on Rails
  • Manage your Ruby Versions Under FreeBSD
  • The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
  • Creating PBI’s with EasyPBI
  • Sofin, the Software Installer

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