[Snort-users] Re: [Snort-devel] Re: RFC: Forking Snort

Jeff Nathan jeff at ...430...
Thu Jul 4 07:39:09 EDT 2002

Matt Jonkman wrote:


> The notion of forking for the people is dramatic and not what I'm driving
> at. Forking for the good of Marty and thus the community I think might be
> closer to the point I was trying to make, yet still dramatic.
> I still stand by the idea that somewhere down the road, be it 6 months or 20
> years, you as a leader of an open source project and a commercial
> organization that is built on that same open source project may be put in a
> position to have to make a choice that is right for the open source project
> but could have a significant negative financial impact on Sourcefire. The
> possibility is theoretical, and unlikely, but exists. That was and is my
> point.

This isn't the first time Marty and several other core Snort developers
have balanced Snort and a commercial IDS interest (myself included). 
Without diving into the ugly details, I'll kindly remind the list of
this happening a few years ago when a few of us were working in

Snort has been and will continue to be developed as open source.  I
don't know how many times we can possibly say this but perhaps it will
never be enough for some.


> technical review of snort vs others in the propaganda magazines. And I also
> never said or implied that I believed you *would* make a choice against
> snort either, only making the point that you will be in the position to
> affect two dependant yet separate entities. That's not the best position to
> be in when there are thousands of people and organizations watching and
> depending on the outcome, as well as your own income.

I think the point regarding the fact that Sourcefire's technology is
built on top of Snort has been made abundantly clear.  For one to be
successful, the other must be as well.  Thus, there is no notion of
choosing with regard to the core Snort technology.


> I would hope that this possibility is constantly considered as snort grows
> and as sourcefire enjoys continued success. Snort is a great thing and
> everyone has done a great job on it, Marty, the dev team, the users, and
> those patient souls that answer the same basic questions on the users list
> over and over without frustration. That's why this exists, and I believe
> it's been so successful because of the absence of direct commercial control.
> Development has not been based on whether the new feature would make more
> money than would be invested in developing it, but whether it'll catch more
> on the wire.
> Matt

Thanks for supporting Snort.  Open Source is nothing without users and a
community to support it.  It's a delicate balance of sharing between a
small development group and a large number of users.


http://jeff.wwti.com            (pgp key available)
"Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen."
- Albert Einstein

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