Monthly archives: April 2010

Free and Open Introduction to Zenoss by Jane Curry – London 21/05/10 1

Zenoss provides comprehensive Open Source network and systems management and uses a Commercial Open Source business model.

Jane Curry has been working with Zenoss for two years after a long background with IBM Tivoli products. She was made a Zenoss Master by Zenoss Inc. in February 2009. She will introduce Zenoss to the audience through a combination of presentation and demos.

This Open Source Specialist Group (OSSG) event is free and open to all and will be held at the BCS Central London Offices, First Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London WC2E 7HA ( on Friday 21st May 2010, from 1800 to 2030.

Free buffet and refreshments available on the night.

To book a place to attend this event please contact Mark Elkins via

Jane’s presentation intends to show that with Zenoss you can monitor all your servers and network devices:

* Know when a critical device goes down
* Alert operations staff when urgent action is needed
* Know how much traffic is flowing on critical network links
* Know how hard your servers are working
* Watch load trends and plan for the future
* Verify SLA compliance

Zenoss has a web interface so you can use it from anywhere. It uses industry-standard protocols like SNMP, ssh and WMI so it can monitor almost anything – Windows, Linux, Cisco, HP and more. There is an extension mechanism so it can adapt to new requirements.

The core functionality is available free of charge so you can get started with no risk. A fully-supported commercial version is available for Enterprise deployments. Zenoss is an excellent replacement for products like IBM NetView, HP Openview, and Nagios.

Question Time on Open Source – Luton 11/05/10 1

In the style of the BBC program Question Time, join us for an evening of Q & A on Open Source software.The Open Source Specialist Group (OSSG) joins forces with BCS Bedford for an entertaining evening debating this hot topic. Is Linux the answer to everything? Can Open Source software provide a real viable alternative in the business world?

A panel of experts detailed below will be available to answer your questions and adjudicating events will be the OSSG Chair, Mark Elkins. If you have a question please submit this before the event to although, just like the real program, we will take some questions on the night.

Click on this link to Register for this event

Time: 7pm for 7:30pm start

Location – Room J110, First Floor, Vicarage Street Campus, Vicarage Street, University of Bedfordshire, Luton LU1 3JU. Use Mall (Arndale) shopping centre car park (free from 6pm)

Directions –

Contact details: Mark Elkins via


Jane Curry a consultant with 29 years experience in operating systems, communications and systems management. Highly experienced in many business sectors with an IT skill-set ranging from microcomputers to mainframes. An IBM Certified Tivoli Consultant and Instructor dedicated to providing high quality systems and network management consultancy with a commitment to education and training. More recently, Jane has been working with Open Source systems management offerings such as Zenoss, OpenNMS and Nagios and was recently awarded the title of Zenoss Master by Zenoss Inc. A professional member of the British Computer Society well versed in educating others regarding technical roles in business computing. Jane is also very interested in promoting IT as a career, especially for women. To this end, she is a Science Engineering Technology (SET) Ambassador and has acted as mentor to a female postgraduate student in the IT department at Oxford Brookes University.

Peter Dawes-Huish, CEO for LinuxIT, has been part of CRN’s A-List for two years in a row and is a member of the Society of Industry Leaders (SIL). In 2006 LinuxIT was chosen IT Services Supplier of the Year at the Computing Awards for Excellence. LinuxIT helps companies throughout Europe by delivering IT consulting, technology and support services through the integration of Open Source solutions.

Michael Kay develops the Saxon XSLT and XQuery processor for manipulating XML; he is the founder of Saxonica, which develops and licenses both the open source and commercial versions of the product. Both versions have a large user base, including many high-throughput and high-profile applications especially in publishing and financial services. As an open source project there are probably two distinctive features worth noting about Saxon: the fact that the software (200K lines of code) is almost entirely developed by one person, and the successful use of a dual-licensing business model. Before starting the development of Saxon ten years ago, Michael was an ICL Fellow, having spent nearly 25 years with ICL as a software product designer and in a variety of other systems architecture and senior engineering roles. As well as developing Saxon, he is editor of the W3C XSLT language specification, and has written the definitive book on the language. He is a frequent conference speaker, and his contributions to the XML community were recognized in 2005 by the award of the XML Cup.

Richard Taylor is a System Architect and Technology Analyst at QinetiQ, he has a background in software systems research with a particular interest in the fields of Systems of Systems Architectures and Open Source Software.As well as doing research work he has hands on implementation experience as an Integration Architect for multi-site, multi-tier, fully redundant enterprise information systems for high transaction rate Internet applications. Richard has been advising the MOD and central government on Open Source issues for more than a decade. He advised the OGC on the formulation of the eGif standards, was co-author of the Defence Scientific Advisory Council report into Open Source Software and part of the QinetiQ team that helped to develop the UK government policy on use of Open Source Software. His main area of research has focused on achieving desired emergent properties in large scale Systems of Systems through novel architectural assessment approaches that can be applied in the public sector acquisition cycle. He has worked with organisations to exploit an appreciation of the emergent properties of complex Systems of Systems to achieve enterprise goals through the practical application of IS policy. He is also a developer of Open Source software including contributions to a number of projects and he helps to run the PyConUK and EuroPython Python programming language conferences.

OSS-Watch TransferSummit – Oxford, 24-25/06/10

TransferSummit, Oxford, 24-25 June 2010 This summer, OSS Watch is sponsoring a major open source conference, aiming to connect academia with open source businesses.  The main conference will be held over two days, 24-25 June 2010, at Keble College Oxford. Covering topics within both academia and business, the event will try to identify areas of activity of mutual interest, looking at how the two sectors can engage with each other. Registration is now open.

OSS-Watch BarCamp – Oxford 26/06/10

BarCamp Oxford, 26 June 2010 [Wed, 28 Apr 2010 10:32:49 +0100] OSS Watch has teamed up with Torchbox to run a BarCamp at the Oxford University Club in Oxford in 26 June 2010. In keeping with the concept of a BarCamp this is an informal, geeky event where delegates can set their own agenda for discussions. This BarCamp follows on from the TransferSummit taking place in Oxford over the previous few days so we hope to see some of the conference delegates staying on for the BarCamp but you don’t need to have been to the conference to join in the fun. Why not sign up today!

Open Source in Telecommunications – London 22/04/10 1

The telecommunications industry has a deep and complex history, where proprietary technologies have featured heavily, the barrier to entry has typically been high and the majority of research and development led by incumbent network operators and equipment providers. More recently we are seeing this change with the growing popularity of IP telephony, the availability of open source softswitch implementations and the aggressive adoption of Linux in mobile handsets, home router/gateways and other customer-premises equipment (CPE). However, whilst the opportunities are significant, many challenges to open source adoption remain and the telecoms environment presents its own set of unique problems.

The BCS Open Source Specialist Group has joined forces with BT to bring an event that seeks to provide insights into the state of the art of open source in telecommunications. The event will consist of a series of talks followed by a panel-led, open discussion centred upon the opportunities that exist and the challenges that the telecommunications industry and open source community faces.

The event will be held at the BCS Central London Offices, First Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London WC2E 7HA ( on Thursday 22nd April, 2010, from 10.00 to 17.30.

To book a place at this event, which is free and open to all, please contact Mark Elkins via


10:00 Introduction

10:15 Why would BT care about Open Source? Jeremy Ruston (BT)

With organisations the size of the BT, you frequently hear announcements that they have partnered with a vendor or done a major deal with a service provider. Large figures are often mentioned – such as the size of a market, the number of users involved or simply the value of a contract. But what about software that is developed by communities of interest, where no vendor may be involved and no money changing hands?

In this presentation Jeremy Ruston will explain what open source means to BT and what drove them to acquire Osmosoft, a small software development company focused on producing open source, web-based collaboration technology. Reflecting on three years as BT’s Head of Open Source Innovation, he will provide an insight into the evolving technology landscape at BT, and outline the key role that open source software has to play in BT’s future.

10:45 Vyatta – open source, software-based enterprise-class IP routing. Ben King (Net That Works)

  • Why Vyatta?
  • Vyatta vs. Cisco – A real world comparison
  • Vyatta – Too big to be small, too small to be big?
  • Vyatta – What are the limits?

11:15 Break

11:30 But you can’t get support for Open Source, can you? Mark Taylor (Sirius)

One of the favourite anti-Open Source myths of proprietary software companies is that Open Source is unsupported and that there’s nobody to turn to for your organisations needs. Mark’s talk will reveal this FUD (‘Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt’) as the nonsense that it is, and show exactly how organisations using Open Source, the support ecosystem, and the underlying projects themselves interact to provide a level of support for Open Source software in the enterprise that simply can’t be matched by the old-school proprietary software vendors.

Using detailed case studies, anecdotes and over a decades experience on the front-lines of Open Source uptake, this talk will give you the information you need to know to confidently deploy enterprise-class Open Source in your own organisation.

12:00 Open Source in Mobile. Andrew Savory (LiMo Foundation)

The LiMo Foundation are building a mobile middleware stack based on Linux. With over 70% of the platform based on open source components, what are the benefits and challenges of open source adoption, and what is the LiMo approach to working with Open Source?

12:30 Open Source, Standards and Standardisation. Paul Downey (BT)

Building on a previous, deliberately provocative talk on “Standards are Peace as Standardization is to War”[1] and an address on Web 2.0 given to the ETSI Board[2] Paul will present a short guide for

assessing the likely impact of the culture of Open Source and lightweight agreements made on The Web on the formal Telecoms standards and standardization process.



13:00 Lunch

13:45 Ensuring Mobile Internet Connectivity at T-Mobile with Nagios. Bernd Erk (Netways)

Since 2003, T-Mobile has employed open source software alongside the traditional close source products. For the last few years, NETWAYS has supported T-Mobile in the deployment and scaling of their Nagios system. Over this period, not only was the in-house company network integrated into the system, but also the international data roaming on GSM networks was established and continuously expanded. This presentation will share the development of T-Mobile’s open source monitoring system to monitor its entire GSM network and data transfer (roaming) to ensure the highest availability of over 450 foreign GSM networks.

14:15 Asterisk. Antony Stone (Sirius)

Asterisk is an Open Source computer-based telephony project which enables the creation of software-based PABX systems, VoIP gateways, call centres and many other computer-telephony integrated applications.  The software supports interfaces to both analogue and digital telephones and exchange lines, and provides features such as intelligent routing, call queuing, music on hold, conference calling and voicemail.  Plugin applications provide integration with standard database servers, corporate directory servers, text-to-speech and voice recognition systems.  Asterisk enables commodity PC hardware to be used for multi-user multi-site voice communications, including connectivity to legacy telephone systems such as analogue phone lines and ISDN.

14:45 Building a GSM Network with OpenBTS. Tim Panton (Westhawk)

OpenBTS is an open-source Unix application that uses the Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP) to present a GSM air interface (“Um”) to standard GSM handset and uses the Asterisk software PBX to connect calls. The combination of the ubiquitous GSM air interface with VoIP backhaul forms the basis of a new type of mobile network that can be deployed and operated at substantially lower cost than existing technologies in greenfields in the developing world.

In plain language, OpenBTS lets you create new kind of mobile network that can be installed and operated at about 1/10 the cost of current technologies, but that will still be compatible with most of the handsets that are already in the market. This technology can also be used in private network applications (wireless PBX, rapid deployment, etc.) at much lower cost and complexity than conventional mobile.

This talk will cover the experience and lessons learnt from a recent trial deployment on the pacific island of Niue.

15:15 Break

15:30 PostgreSQL in Telecommunications. Simon Riggs (2ndQuadrant)

PostgreSQL has a variety of features of interest to Telco users. Many well known companies are already users and a brief review of deployed solutions gives a flavour of that. Enhancements in PostgreSQL 9.0 due out in mid-2010 will also be discussed, plus further developments in later releases.

16:00 OpenNMS and the Telemanagement Forum Standardisation Activities. Dr Craig Gallen (OpenNMS)

OpenNMS is the worlds first enterprise grade Open Source Network Management platform. Unlike other Open source Network Management tools, OpenNMS has been designed specifically with the scalability and enterprise integration requirements of large telecommunications operators in mind. It and is being used in production by a number of large service providers.

In order to continue to address the requirements of the telecommunications industry, OpenNMS has been contributing to the TM Forum Interface Program which is standardizing the next generation of OSS interfaces. One of the most innovative aspects of the program is in its use of Open Source development techniques and technologies to increase the attractiveness of the new interfaces for early adopters. Open source is being used to create the core Interface Framework artefacts, Reference Implementations, Compatibility Test Kits and an Implementation library for prospective developers.

This talk will provide an introduction to the OpenNMS project and it’s contribution to industry standardisation through the TM Forum.

16:30 Panel. All speakers.

17:30 Close


Jeremy Ruston (BT)

Jeremy is the founder of Osmosoft and creator of TiddlyWiki, a popular open source wiki. He joined BT three years ago to lead its open source innovation activities, helping BT take advantage of the unique business opportunities offered by participation in open source communities.

Ben King (Net That Works & WarwickNet)

Ben King has over 10 years experience in Internet networking, he owns and runs two companies:

Net That Works: A network design and consultancy firm, that helps medium to large organisations design, optimise and maintain their layer 2 and 3 network architecture. Net That Works is Vyatta leading UK reseller and consultants.

WarwickNet: A UK tier 2 ISP that specialises in providing managed bandwidth solutions to managed service environments. WarwickNet use Vyatta for all core routing including BGP and OSPF.

Mark Taylor (Sirius)

Mark Taylor is a long time practitioner and advocate of Open Source in the Enterprise. As Chief Executive of Sirius, Mark’s record includes most of the significant deployments of Open Source Software in the UK, including Specsavers, the National Digital Resource Bank, and Yell Adwords to name but a few. Sirius is the first and only Open Source company to be government accredited, and runs the first Government Minister launched Open Source project; The National Digital Resource Bank. Mark is a well known writer and speaker on every aspect of the Open Source phenomenon, and has acted as an advisor on Open Source to all main UK political parties.

Andrew Savory (LiMo Foundation)

Andrew Savory is the Open Source Manager for LiMo Foundation, where he works to ensure understanding of and compliance to open source principles and to facilitate contributions back to open source communities. He has over a decade of firsthand insight of working with industry leaders using and engaging with open source. Andrew has worked with open source software starting with Linux in 1994 and founding the Linux user group ALUG (Anglian Linux User Group, shortly after. He was the founder of one of the earliest open source software solutions providers in the UK, Sourcesense (, and instrumental in the creation of the Association For Free Software, a UK offshoot of the Free Software Foundation. In 2003 he was a founder of the first open source business alliance, Orixo, ( An active contributor to the open source community, Andrew is a Member of the Apache Software Foundation.

Paul Downey (BT)

Paul is a developer at Osmosoft where along with contributing to a number of Open Source projects, notably TiddlyWiki, he represents BT at the W3C. He is mildly notorious for a series of Ãœber-doodles, known collectively as “The Web is Agreement” [1].


Bernd Erk (Netways)

Bernd Erk, Head of Operations, has overseen the Managed Services, Consulting and Development business areas at NETWAYS since 2007. Ensuring the success and smooth operation of all customer projects and business processes, Bernd’s technical expertise stretches across Systems Management, Managed Services and Software Development. A contributor to Linux Magazine and Linux Technical Review in Germany, Bernd regularly publishes articles and presents on open source topics ranging across Nagios monitoring, XEN virtualization, MySQL database monitoring and performance tuning among others. Bernd was previously Operating Systems Specialist at Quelle Schickedanz AG & Co., where he worked heavily with Solaris, HPUX and Oracle databases. After which, Bernd spent 8 years as Business Unit Manager at Ise-Informatik where he dealt with Oracle databases and service oriented architectures.

Antony Stone (Sirius)

Antony Stone has been a networking, security and applications engineer for twenty-five years, and has been working exclusively with Open Source systems since 1997.  He specialises in firewalls, VPNs and telephony implementations, and has worked with Asterisk for a variety of customers ranging from small telesales offices to multi-site international PLCs. He has a particular interest in computer telephony integration for applications such as remote access and control in the event of network connectivity failures. Antony has a Master’s degree from Royal Holloway, University of London, and has been teaching on the MSc course in Information Security since 2002.

Tim Panton (Westhawk)

Tim Panton has been a software developer for more than 25 years, working on a diverse range of projects, from chemical plant simulation to tourism web sites. He is also a contributor to open source projects, in particular GJTAPI a framework for implementing JTAPI (The Java Telephony

API) and Westhawk‘s Java SNMP stack. In recent years Tim has been predominantly involved in Asterisk development and implementation, working closely with key industry players he has been championing innovative integration of voice technologies.

Simon Riggs (2ndQuadrant)

Simon is a lead developer and advocate for the PostgreSQL project, an advanced open source RDBMS focused on reliability, performance and enterprise-class features. As a developer, Simon has contributed significant performance and high availability features to each of the last 6 major releases, with recognition as a Major Developer and code Committer. Simon’s role is Chief Technology Officer at 2ndQuadrant, a worldwide supplier of support, training and services for PostgreSQL and derivative solutions.

Dr Craig Gallen (OpenNMS)

Dr Craig Gallen MIET, C. Eng, has worked as an engineer in Broadcasting, Process Control and Network Management. Latterly he worked as a senior product manager with Nortel Networks before leaving to pursue his doctoral studies in open source operational support systems at the

University of Southampton. He currently works as an OSS software consultant and as a committer to the OpenNMS project. He is the leader of the TM Forum Interface Program Open Source Project hosted at

UKUUG Open Tech 2010 – London 11/09/10

Open Tech 2010
11th September, from UKUUG

Sponsored by

Open Tech 2010 is an informal, low cost, one-day conference on slightly different approaches to technology, politics and justice.

What do you work on that more people should know about in any 2 (or more) of our areas?

What have you heard about recently, that you think more people should know about?

OpenTech is as much about conversations in the bar, as it is sitting in sessions; what topics would you like to be discussed with a range of people? The best way of getting the OpenTech audience to think about the challenges you have is by sharing what they are and solutions you’ve already found: by offering a talk.

Are there community projects that you work on that would benefit from more support and different views? Are you working on problems that you think others might help solve?

Offer a talk online at or email and we’ll have a chat. If you can get us
submissions (even just outline submissions) by the 1st of May, that’d be grand.

*What is OpenTech 2010?*
– Open Tech 2010 is an informal, low cost, one-day conference on slightly different approaches to technology, politics and justice

What’s the day going to have?
– Technology
– Politics
– Justice
– what do you want to talk about?

*What do we need?*
– Proposals from people who want to give a presentation, run a panel, organise a tutorial, or run a demo of something new and interesting on something that they think matters or getting people to help.

– Publicity – please blog this announcement, write a newspaper article, forward to mailing lists, and tell your friends!

What topics do we hope to cover?
– Justice: Civil, Social, Environmental, Criminal, Legal, other.
– Community engagement
– Democracy 2.0
– Mashups, open data and uses
– Future of media and distribution
– Disaster politics and technology
– Highlights, lowlights and lessons learnt
– Long term thinking on big problems and massive opportunities
– Tutorials & Workshops – share what you know

– If you’ve got an interesting proposal that doesn’t fit into any of the categories above, please send it in anyway!

What have we already got talks or sessions about?
– Rewired State
– Where now for Open Video? from
– mySociety
– What’s next after the General Election?

We’re still looking for more talks on all our topics, so if you want to offer something, we’re waiting to hear your ideas.

*How do I submit a proposal?*
– Online form via
– Deadline for submissions is midnight on Tuesday 1st June 2010

*Can I buy or reserve a ticket to the event?*

– Register at and we’ll email you nearer the time with more information

*Any other questions?*

Read the Submission page or email

More information at

— the OpenTech 2010 organisers
(David, Emily, Sam)

Call for papers: OpenCert 2010

4th International Workshop on Foundations and Techniques for OPEN SOURCE SOFTWARE CERTIFICATION

Location and date
Pisa, Italy – 17-18 September 2010
Satellite Event to SEFM 2010
Submission deadline
28 June, 2010


Over the past decade, the Open Source Software (OSS) phenomenon has had a global impact on
the way software systems and and software-based services are developed, distributed and deployed.
Widely acknowledged benefits of OSS include reliability, low development and maintenance costs,
as well as rapid code turnover. Linux distributions, Apache and MySQL serve, among many other examples,
as a testimony to its success and resilience.

However, state-of-the-art OSS, by the very nature of its open, unconventional, distributed
development model, make software quality assessment, let alone full certification, particularly
hard to achieve and raises important challenges both from the technical/methodological and
the managerial points of view.

This makes the use of OSS, and, in particular, its integration within complex industrial-strength
applications, with stringent security requirements, a risk. And, simultaneously an opportunity and
a challenge for rigourous, mathematically based, methods in software analysis and engineering.

In such a context, the aim of this workshop is to bring together researchers from academia and industry
who are broadly interested in the quality assessment of open source software projects, ultimately leading
to the establishment of coherent certification processes, at different levels.

Following the success of the three previous editions (colocated to ETAPS’07, in Braga, and OSS’08,
at IFIP WCC, in Milan, and ETAPS’09, in York), the workshop will focus on formal methods and
model-based techniques that appear promising to facilitate OSS certification.
Both foundational, methodological and pragmatic issues will be addressed, through both standard
technical communications and reports on concrete case-studies and experimental data.


Contributions are expected to foster a broad debate on OSS assessment and certification, integrating
techniques and elements from areas as different as

  • product and process certification
  • certification standards
  • formal modelling and verification (model checking and theorem proving)
  • software quality and reverse engineering
  • static analysis, testing and inspection
  • safety, security and usability certification
  • language design and evolving systems
  • automated source code analyses
  • empirical studies


The two-day workshop will feature invited talks, a pannel discussion and contributed
paper presentations. All contributions, in the form of either full technical papers,
between 10 and 16 pages, or short position papers, will undergo a peer-review process.
All papers should be written in English and in ECEASST format.

Detailed information on the submission procedure are available at


Accepted papers will be published in Electronic Communications of the EASST (ECEASST)
Publication of selected papers in a journal is currently under negotiation.


  • Abstract submission: 21 June, 2010
  • Paper submission deadline: 28 June, 2010
  • Acceptance notification: 30 July, 2010
  • Final version due: 14 August, 2010


  • B. Aichernig, Graz, Austria
  • A. Abdurahmanovic, PrimeKey, Sweden
  • L. Barbosa, Minho, Portugal (co-chair)
  • A. Capiluppi, East London, UK
  • A. Cerone, UNU-IIST, Macau, SAR China (co-chair)
  • G. Ciobanu, A.I. Cuza, Romania
  • E. Damiani, Milano, Italy
  • J. Davies, Oxford, UK
  • R. di Cosmo, Paris Diderot, France
  • F. Fabbrini, ISTI-CNR, Italy
  • M. J. Frade, Minho, Portugal
  • J. Fisteus, Madrid Carlos III, Spain
  • D. Ghica, Birmingham, UK
  • T. Janowski, UNU-IIST, Macau, SAR China
  • P. Krishnan, Bond, Australia
  • P. Milazzo, Pisa, Italy
  • J. Miranda, Multicert, Portugal
  • J. Noll, LERO, Ireland
  • A. Petrenko, ISP-RAS, Russia
  • S. Pickin, Madrid Carlos III, Spain
  • S. Shaikh, Coventry, UK (co-chair)
  • S. K. Sowe, UNU-MERIT, The Netherlands
  • R. Treinen, Paris Diderot, France
  • J. Visser, SIG, The Netherlands
  • D. von Oheimb, Siemens, Germany
  • T. Vos, UP Valencia, Spain
  • A. Wasserman, CMU, USA