By Glenn Seiler
Usage of OpenSAF is growing exponentially. The number of companies I hear from that are evaluating or considering using OpenSAF grows every month. A common trend that I see more and more often is that someone in an R&D capacity or someone charged with creating a prototype downloads OpenSAF from opensaf.org and begins working with it, to acquaint them with the technology. For example, if you are a Wind River Linux user, you can download a pristine version of OpenSAF software directly from the Wind River Developers Network that has been pre-validated and packaged to build with Wind River’s Linux Distribution Assembly Tool (LDAT). The version of OpenSAF you can download from Wind River Developer Network is exactly the same as the current version of OpenSAF at devel.opensaf.org, except it has been put into a ‘layer’ that is recognized and used by Wind River’s build environment. This can save significant time and effort for companies that want to do a quick analysis or build of OpenSAF.
The most common method for getting support or help for OpenSAF projects is by utilizing “community support.” The Wind River Developer Network is a great place to look for answers or to post a question. This is where members of Wind River’s OpenSAF and Linux engineering community can help. In addition, the OpenSAF project has many helpful documents and mailing lists that can provide help. There are many mailing lists that you should consider subscribing to, including a developers mailing list that is used by many of the actual developers contributing code to the OpenSAF project.
If community support does not meet your needs, you have a couple of other options. For instance, consider the Wind River OpenSAF Quickstart offering that includes one year of formal technical support similar to the support we offer with our Linux product. This includes formal TSRs (Technical Support Requests), defect resolution and support calls. In addition, Wind River OpenSAF Quickstart includes a three-day on site consultation to get your project up and running. Wind River has deep technical expertise, including one of the OpenSAF project maintainers on staff to help you get your project started, and some in-house tools to get an initial cluster of nodes up and running. Wind River OpenSAF Quickstart can significantly help with the installation, configuration and planning of your OpenSAF project.
Another option for getting your project up and running is to license a full-featured OpenSAF product from a commercial provider. These companies usually have an OpenSAF distribution of their own, that may or may not have additional features or enhancements. Additionally, a commercial OpenSAF provider will usually have their own roadmap for new releases and updates and a set of tools that can help configure and build an OpenSAF project. GoAhead Software is the only commercial company I am aware of that has their distribution of OpenSAF. GoAhead has validated their commercial OpenSAF product, called OpenSAFire, with Wind River Linux to ensure that customers have a seamless experience with Wind River Linux and OpenSAF. Together, Wind River and GoAhead can provide the professional services you may need such as porting legacy applications, extending the functionality of OpenSAF with other features or functions, or developing custom hardware support.
No matter if you choose to build OpenSAF yourself, or if you leverage a commercial solution, Wind River can provide you with the expertise, support and professional services you need to make your OpenSAF experience a success.