Bye bye Hudson, Hello Jenkins

(This post was originally made under an incorrect location, so I’m moving it here. The contents haven’t changed since its original post on Jan 11th 2011.)

As some of you may know, toward the end of the last year, Hudson project has experienced a fire drill — you can see it here, here, here, and here. In short, the issue was that Oracle was asserting a trademark right to the project name “Hudson”, and that caused some considerable concerns to the community. Since then, key community members were talking with Oracle, in an attempt to produce some kind of proposal for a stable structure and arrangement, which was then going to be proposed to the Hudson community.

And as Andrew posted in, there is an update now — the negotiation didn’t work.

The central issue was that we couldn’t convince Oracle to put the trademark under a neutral party’s custody (such as Software Freedom Conservancy), to level the playing field. In a project where the community makes commits two order of magnitudes bigger than Oracle, we felt such an arrangement is necessary to ensure that meritocracy continues to function.

Aside from this, Oracle wanted a broader change to the way the Hudson project operates, including a far more formal change review process, architectures, 3rd party dependencies and their licenses, and so on. Those policies are worth discussing on their own, but it was very risky idea to have someone external to the project draw them up. Instead, in a normal OSS project, such processes would normally come out from the dev community itself, based on how it has been functioning. This is where I felt that the lack of “level playing field” I mentioned above is already affecting us. (And on that note, there’s another asymmetry about the CLAs, that we haven’t even touched on.)

All of those still might not have been a show-stopper if we felt that there is a genuine trust between us, but in this case, we just failed to build such a relationship, even after a month long conversation.

So in the end, we’d like to propose the community that we regrettably abandon the name “Hudson” and rename to “Jenkins” — it’s another English-sounding butler name that doesn’t collide with any software project as far as I can tell. This option was something we’d have liked to avoid, for all the obvious reasons, but I’m convinced that for a long-term health of the project, this is the only choice. It makes me sad at a personal level too, as I named this project Hudson back in 2004, and cherished it ever since. But the storm is gathering over the horizon, and the time to act is now.

The details of the proposal is again in the posting at Hudson Labs, so I won’t repeat it here. One thing I wanted to stress is that we’d like to move Jenkins under the umbrella of SFC, a neutral overlord that doesn’t concern itself with the daily technical matters of the project, just like how Sun was. That’s the model under which Hudson has grown, and I think it still fits us well.

There will be a poll running to get the broader community concensus. Please give us your support, and please let your voice be heard.

12 Comments Add yours

  1. kohsuke says:

    Moving comments here:

    Samuel García Martínez:
    January 11th, 2011 at 13:24 | #1
    Congratulations for the proposal. As i use Hudson server and i’m really happy with it, i’ll support so far your proposal.
    For the record, do you really think that Oracle will accept your invitation? I dare to guess they wont.

    Seung Soo, Ha:
    January 11th, 2011 at 13:50 | #2
    Hudson devs have done enough to avoid this.
    If this is the required, so be it.

    Seung Soo, Ha
    January 11th, 2011 at 13:51 | #3
    @Seung Soo, Ha
    the required -> the required action

    Jack Repenning
    January 11th, 2011 at 14:55 | #4
    Good for you, to stick up for communitarian decisions and practices!

    Lars Vogel
    January 11th, 2011 at 14:57 | #5
    Good luck with your jorney, I like that you did a clear cut.
    Apache might also be a good choice for a huge project like Jenkins.

    AC de Souza
    January 11th, 2011 at 16:37 | #6
    Leeroy Jenkins!!! #ftw
    I hope help him more!

    January 12th, 2011 at 03:49 | #7
    Why not move it to Apache?

    Timoteo Ponce
    January 12th, 2011 at 04:48 | #8
    It doesn’t matter if the name changes (at least for regular users) but it seems to be the simplest way to avoid future problems.
    I’m all for it!

  2. kohsuke says:

    Timoteo Ponce
    January 12th, 2011 at 04:48 | #8
    It doesn’t matter if the name changes (at least for regular users) but it seems to be the simplest way to avoid future problems.
    I’m all for it!

    Craig McQueen
    January 12th, 2011 at 15:40 | #9
    Sorry to hear it was necessary. I really wish Oracle grokked the OSS concept.

    Ivan S Kirkpatrick
    January 14th, 2011 at 04:39 | #10
    I support your move. I would echo the question as to why not make it an apache project?
    It seems to me that the big vendors are taking advantage of the contributions of the developer community and not contributing much back. My perception is that IBM and perhaps Google both seem to be an exception.

    Eric Manuguerra
    January 14th, 2011 at 05:03 | #11
    It sounds like a good decision. I’ve been using Hudson/Jenkins for two years. It is a very very good continuous integration software. I like it very much. If this choice will keep the project more creative, and the developers happy to work for it, it is (to me) a good decision.

    January 20th, 2011 at 14:08 | #12
    chris :
    Why not move it to Apache?

    One might as well ask, why move? Apache can be helpful if there isn’t enough bureacracy; or perhaps to improve name recognition. I don’t think this project needs either at this point… so it seems pointless to move. Just my 2c.

  3. SK says:

    +1 for Jenkins! It is sad, but it looks like the best move. You guys do an amazing job. Just keep it going!

  4. Mark Borg says:

    Looks like a good decision to us

  5. Phil says:

    Hi, I am a Hudson user who is considering moving to Jenkins. I am trying to understand what is going on.

    You said “And on that note, there’s another asymmetry about the CLAs, that we haven’t even touched on.”

    I know you are probably busy getting Jenkins set up, but can you elaborate on the CLA asymmetry in a blog post sometime?


  6. I am using hudson / Jenkin from 2 years. Very good & mature project. I find hudson / Jenkin very simple & just rocks… We are with you.

  7. taphsene says:

    I have one question to ask you about jenkins.
    I am new on jenkins. I saw in a project,which you worked, that is in this link$deploy/. You used “redeploy the artefacts”. How you did this! i think that you use the plugin “deploy”. I want to do the same thing but i am using jetty server which is not supported by this plugin! Do you have an alternative to propose me?
    I want just to have the option “redeploy artifacts” from a build for deploying artifacts in a jetty server!
    thank you in advance

  8. Mark Indictor says:

    Hello Kohsuke,

    I have been using Hudson for quite a while, and have been too swamped (until now) to switch to Jenkins. I just made my first attempt, and it failed. After reading some posts on the subject, it seems that what started almost two years ago as a “drop-in replacement” for Hudson has now diverged enough so that the transition is not nearly as painless. Do you have any suggestions as to how to go about it in the current environment, e.g. from Hudson 2.2.1 –> Jenkins 1.492?

    Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.



  9. Wanted to share my approach of migrating hudson to jenkins. My blog doesn’t talk about jenkins setup issues but how I managed to build 100 hudson jobs with just 5 jenkins jobs.

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