Open Source Identity With No Lock In

Location: E146
Average rating: ****.
(4.14, 7 ratings)

When Sun was acquired by Oracle, a big slice of Sun’s software portfolio was effectively abandoned. What were the customers to do? We decided to start a new company to provide development continuity for existing users of the identity-related software in the portfolio. To do that, we had to:

  • Rehost And Carry On – create new projects on new hosting and help the existing communities move to them
  • Establish a business that didn’t attempt to accumulate copyrights as a means for control
  • Persuade customers that a new business was able to support mission-critical software
  • Set up a global development and support operation in minimum time
  • Invent a way of doing business that meshed well with both enterprise customers and open source communities
  • Fund it all ourselves.

That was February 2010. Today we’re up and running with a strong customer base. Hear about the philosophy, the experiences and the strategies we’ve used, as well as a little about the open source software itself – OpenAM for SAML-federated authorization including in the cloud, OpenDJ for scalable LDAP and OpenIDM for provisioning.

Photo of Simon Phipps

Simon Phipps

Public Software CIC

Simon Phipps has engaged at a strategic level in the world’s leading technology companies, starting in roles such as field engineer, programmer, systems analyst and more recently taking on executive leadership roles around open source. Simon worked with X-series standards in the ‘80s, on collaborative conferencing software in the ’90s, helped introduce both Java and XML at IBM, and was instrumental in open sourcing the whole software portfolio at Sun Microsystems. He is now managing director of Meshed Insights Ltd and founder of Public Software CIC. As a director of the Document Foundation and of the UK’s Open Rights Group, he takes an active interest in digital rights issues and is a widely read commentator on InfoWorld and his own Webmink blog. Simon holds a BSc in electronic engineering and is a fellow of the British Computer Society and the Open Forum Academy.

Photo of Allan Foster

Allan Foster

ForgeRock AS

Allan Foster is a founding member of ForgeRock, bringing skills in the entire Identity management space.
He has proven skills in Access Management, Federation, and Portal Architectures.
Allan is based in Portland, Oregon in the USA, and has worked with the ForgeRock products, as well as prior version of the products for several years. Allan brings 25 years of experience in the development, internet, and Identity management spaces to ForgeRock.
Allan’s career has reached from Apple Computer inc, to Netscape, AOL, Guru Associates, and Sun Microsystems before joining the team at ForgeRock.
Allan has spoken at numberous technical conferences within the USA as well as internationally.

Lasse Andresen


A powerhouse of tireless can-do enthusiasm, Lasse brings a unique blend of business, technical and people skills to leading Forgerock. His twenty-plus years of experience in the software industry include leadership roles at both Sun Microsystems and Texas Instruments, most recently as CTO for Sun Central and Northern Europe. His passion and vision combine to ensure ForgeRock is always ready to execute and deliver. 2000-2003 Co-Founder and CTO of
Lasse has also played keyboards in several bands.
His special skills spans being an entrepreneur, the network is the computer (cloud computing), identity and access management, web 2.0, infrastructure software, open source, distributed organizations, and leadership.

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Picture of Jerry Hilts
Jerry Hilts
07/28/2011 4:53am PDT


Picture of Jerry Hilts
Jerry Hilts
07/28/2011 4:53am PDT

Though Simon’s into to the meaning and advantages of Free & Open Source Software was good, it seemed better targeted to an audience that was new to the topic. One would assume that the OSCON audience in 2011 are already familiar with the four freedoms, already convinced of the advantages of FOSS, etc. It was a lot of time spent during which we waited patiently to get to the topic of identity management.