Vert.x likely to head to Eclipse Foundation

Chris Mayer

The polyglot asynchronous framework looks set to take up residence at Eclipse, following intense community discussion.

Following an intense back and forth community debate, the new home for asynchronous framework Vert.x look set to be the Eclipse Foundation.

Project creator Tim Fox’s recommendation comes after ten days of in-depth discussion on Vert.x’s Google Group, in which noted open source advocates discussed the merits of neutral foundations.

After dismissing the option of forking Vert.x, Fox opted for Eclipse over the Apache Software Foundation, considering them to be “a little more business friendly” and in line with Vert.x’s aspirations of getting “a foothold in large enterprises”.

The future of the project, seen as a JVM alternative to node.js, lay uncertain at the beginning of January, after Fox moved from VMware ( which sponsored the project) to rival Red Hat. VMware lawyers handed a letter to Fox in person, demanding him to waive the IP rights to the projects, including the domain, Github repository and blog.

VMware’s heavy-handed approach didn’t go down well with committers initially. Red Hat VP Mark Little calmed fears in a joint statement soon after, stating that the two parties were “discussing various options, including whether to move the project to an open source software foundation.”

Since then, numerous luminaries in software development  have had their say via Vert.x’s mailing list, including Eclipse’s Director Mike Milinkovich, Apache President Jim Jagielski and Kohsuke Kawaguchi, the creator of CI server Hudson, who went through a similar dilemma in 2011.

A mudslinging and point scoring match between open source foundations was avoided, with several playing their part in a thoughtful thread fleshing out the intricate details that Vert.x would need to go through if they Fox chose a neutral foundation. One such problem would be moving Vert.x from an Apache License to an Eclipse Public License.

Little agreed with Fox’s recommendation for Eclipse, whereas VMware still haven’t responded at the time of writing.

UPDATE: On January 22nd, Tim Fox gave the green light for vert.x to move to the Eclipse Foundation after, VMware confirmed they were happy with the transfer to proceed. Plans are now in action for the project to move across in the ‘Moving to Eclipse’ thread, instigated by Eclipse director Mike Milinkovich. A resolution is in sight.

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