Opendarwin turning the lights off


When Apple announced OS X and their open source initiatives, my first reaction (not owning a Mac at the time) was to seek out PC builds of this software. That search resulted in finding OpenDarwin, who hosted PPC and Intel builds of the Mac OS X kernel, drivers, and more. I spent a few days getting Darwin installed and configured on my PII motherboard, compiling X11 and KDE, and had a functioning and usable desktop system with Darwin handling it very nicely. This project of mine turned into saving up cash for my introduction to Mac OS X 10.2, and has led me to where I am today. Had I not dug into understanding the Mach kernel and driver interaction, there is no doubt I wouldn’t know what I do about Mac OS X today. All of this fun and exploration is solely due to the work of the OpenDarwin team.
It’s with great sadness to report that is shutting down.

Over the past few years, OpenDarwin has become a mere hosting facility for Mac OS X related projects. The original notions of developing the Mac OS X and Darwin sources has not panned out. Availability of sources, interaction with Apple representatives, difficulty building and tracking sources, and a lack of interest from the community have all contributed to this. Administering a system to host other people’s projects is not what the remaining OpenDarwin contributors had signed up for and have been doing this thankless task far longer than they expected. It is time for OpenDarwin to go dark.

I agree that has become more of a repository for Mac OS X projects than the original intention of working on Darwin’s code. Will these projects graciously hosted there move over to darwinports, sourceforge, or somewhere else? Do you have a project hosted there, and if so what will you do with it?


John Dingler

So what does the shutting down of OpenDarwin mean, that Apple is the default repository of changes to the code? You let me know how this works.

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