Open Source Server Hardware?

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Earlier this year, Nat Torkington of the O’Reilly Radar blog, asked “Is ‘Open Source’ Now Completely Meaningless?”

Nat is ranting about firms who exhibited at the OSCON Open Source Convention this year who probably didn’t fit in. Nonetheless, is the clear definition of open source deteriorating? Is “Open Source” more of a way of thinking than a rigid software term? Let’s pretend for a minute it is, and explain how Vibrant’s line of used servers could be considered open source.

  1. We don’t care what OS you load onto it once you’ve gotten it… Linux, Windows, AIX, Solaris, go for it!
  2. Furthermore, we don’t care which manufacturer you want to buy, we carry Sun, HP, IBM and Dell. If you want to add 3rd party drives or memory, we’ll do that too!
  3. Finally, we don’t lock anybody into set server configurations. Instead, we’ll custom configure a system to meet their needs.


OK, so can we respectfully call our used server products “open source”?

Nah! It just doesn’t feel right to use the term when it comes to hardware.

(But we will custom paint a server if you prefer your Big Blue IBM server in orange. That has to count for something, right!?)

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