Thursday 22 October 2015

Lack of openness: Sailfish OS 2.0 Saimaa

The real Sailfish OS 2.0 rolling out

Sailfish OS Saimaa is rolling out to Early access customers on October 22, 2015 and for everybody on November 3, 2015. Already the name suggests something big, and maybe more open, as Saimaa is the biggest lake in Finland.

Update: This is not a full review as it was intended to be, as I run into lack of openness right in the beginning.

System update: Sailfish OS 2.0 Saimaa

Worth a read? Please share:

I started with checking the openness, but unfortunately I didn't run into much. There are no new open source licensed packages (by Jolla) on Sailfish OS 2.0.
  • One of the already open source packages (Geoclue-provider-hybris) was updated from LGPL2.0+ to LGPL2.1
  • Two new open source package (Opencryptoki and Opus) were added, but these packages are not originally coded by Jolla. However, there are contributions by them.
  • One new, obviously proprietary code package (feature-jolla) was added
For this reason I must share that I don't feel like writing a review on this version of Sailfish OS, and in general I don't even feel like blogging right now, so I'm putting this blog on ice while waiting for more news on open source Sailfish OS.

You can find the current FOSS situation here

For information on Sailfish OS 2.0: please check the official release notes

For explanation: My free willing contribution, keeping up a blog sharing the Sailfish OS story, was based on knowledge that I'm contributing to an open source project. When I started this was still a published goal on Reading the latest promise by Antti Saarnio I set myself a time frame that at least the promised roadmap would be there when Sailfish OS 2.0 is released.

UPDATE, October 24, 2015: I've promised a Jolla Tablet review earlier, so there's still one more upcoming blog post and it's coming soon. Also while this blog is on ice, I was happy to notice that Jolla Users just got back on track in blogging. Recommending that for fans hungry for updates, and also James is writing a tablet review there around the same time. Check also the blogs with other languages listed on the side panel

UPDATE, November 3, 2015: Early access release on October 22rd was released for everybody today. No changes compared to the EA release. Update process goes via version which changelog was not published 

Thanks for your visit, (hopefully) until later!

ps. the pic on top shows boat S/S Suur-Saimaa [Big Saimaa], one of the historical steam boats still taking tourists out to this wide and open lake in Finland. Saimaa relates also to the history of Linux, as Linus Torvalds spent his summertime there during his childhood, and learned the most of his Finnish there too.

Share and Shout! Your friends might read it.

By: Review Jolla
Photo: wikipedia
Sources: release notes, changelog, github, merproject, wikipedia
Published: 2015-10-22 14:32 UTC
Updated: 2015-11-03 13:31 UTC


  1. I can understand your frustration, but a blog post like this is simply garbage. I came here to read a preview on the next update, not a rant from a blogger... which is a thing you have the right to do, but you should rename the post something like "Lack of new open packages in the next Sailfish update"... I'm more disappointed by you than by Jolla right now.

    1. Thanks for understanding, and I'm sorry to disappoint you. You're quite right on what you say, so I'm updating both the topic and the beginning.

  2. Thank you very much for all the Information about Sailfish OS and Jolla on your Blog! Hope you will continue your great work soon.

    1. Thanks a lot :) While the story of Sailfish OS goes on, it remains to bee seen what's the story of this blog in the future. In the best case this post will be updated to a review on one sunny day.

  3. Sorry to hear you are putting the blog on ice for now. It seem that lack of openness is the main theme for Jolla recently. Jolla is unfortunately having some issues with keeping their promises and communicating (both about tablet and Sailfish) right now. I hope Jolla will get back on track so You can continue Your great work on the blog and we all can keep supporting them although they are making it quite difficult right now.

    1. Yeah, voluntary contribution is nice when there is Love, Passion, Respect and Transparency. I was waiting for the latter, but now instead seeing the Respect getting some hits too. But I'm sure Sailors do their best on reviving, let's see :)

  4. Very important information, you gave us here! I'm also very diasappointed that the Jolla-Story of 'openness' seems to be just a kind of advertising. It reminds me on Volkswagen cheating customers with the wrong promise of clean Diesel.

    But I think that you can't stop your imortant work at this point. You are the only serious blogger at Jolla's side from the beginning. If you leave SailfishOS, it feels that Jolla is already dead. Please keep us informed!

    However, I thank you for your great work in the last two years. Stay tuned! :-)

    1. No ship should be dependent on one sailor I hope, but I actually do have at least one more post to blog... I gathered interest towards a Jolla Tablet review in this post, and after receiving more than 100 replies I can't "betray" my readers leaving that undone. I'm looking forward to receive a review loan device pretty soon, so...

      One more coming up :)

  5. May I draw the interest to this Austrian page, where Oskar Welzl has come up with a summery of the openness of Sailfish OS 2.0. It's in German language, so here a Google translate:
    May it help to rate the overall situation of the lack of openness, which is in my opinion not that bad.

    1. Good additional info and an opinion. Here's that same link to the translation to click/tap, thanks for sharing.

  6. Hello Simo!

    I'm sad to see this blog "on ice" and I can certainly understand your frustation. I think, though, that many of you expected too much from this specific release (2.0.0), which is after all an update like the others, only with a nicer version number (chosen to avoid misunderstandings I guess, as they were to use 1.2.0 before settling on 2.0.0/Saimaa).
    Of course, you choose to wait until this specific release to get at least a roadmap and that's perfectly fine, but remember that we are still in the "early stages" of "SailfishOS 2.0" and there is a long road ahead.

    Perhaps Jolla should ban the word "soon" from every announcement as that - obviously - makes false expectations :)

    Regarding the 'feature-jolla' package, it currently seems to only set-up the new 'customer-jolla' repository which will probably host specific Jolla contents (wallpapers? ringtones? applications for jolla customers?). This is an expected move as SailfishOS is going to be used also by other companies (Intex comes to mind) and it makes sense that the package is proprietary (as it's not part of SailfishOS).
    We will probably see a customer-intex package in the future Intex phone, if it will be released at all :)

    Of course, the above are only my suppositions so I may be totally wrong.

    Anyway, just to give a ray of hope, it seems that at least in a new package has been open-sourced, with a triple license LGPL-2.1+/GPL-2.0+/agreement-with-jolla: the Notes application.
    This has not been announced anywhere, as they will probably - understandably - want to open-source some more packages before making an official announcement.

    But things are definitely going in the right direction. Probably we'll have a fully open SailfishOS before the tablet gets in our hands :)

    I look forward in reading more of your posts!

    1. Hi Eugenio,

      Thanks a lot for your words. We actually started a small related discussion with ossi1967 below this post which you might be interested to join.

      Thanks also for clearing out the `feature-jolla´, content you suggest could really be left outside the OSS SailfishOS.

      Looking forward to join this great community again later!

  7. There are twoo kinds of 'openness' : transparancy in communication about the company, and open source.
    I know that I am cursing in the church now, but I have to say that open source int the hope that many developers together can create a fantastic product is the route to failure. In SourceForge there are about 130.000 open source products. Only a few hundred can keep up and only a few of them lead to a useful product. Many developers do like open source because of self-interest. To play with and to make it as they like.
    But more than half of the population is not able to change things in their phone. As many people are not able to knit a pullover in five colours. Ergo, I think there are too high expectations of open source and I think it is wise of Jolla not to show all its cards on the table.
    All those complainers and mourners on the Jolla blog: Jolla failed, but what did you contribute? Did you make something nice for Jolla users?
    Another source of failure is the lack of a good financial system for rewarding developers. Obviously Flattr is not the way to attract the best developers.

    1. Important points of view. Comparing a bit with those two kinds you mentioned:

      Jolla had (until some recent point) quite open collaboration and communication with their customers and devs, at the same time missing the latter.

      On the "other side", Android carries the latter (open source license), delivering the user interface and several apps in FOSS, but mostly misses the first, not allowing development in open, not sharing stuff while developed, baiting devs to use their closed source services and denying their licensed manufacturer partners to release AOSP versions...

      From the 3rd party app developer and from the end user point of view Android is clearly more open, enabling for example changes in home, selecting default apps to be launched etc. but from the system development and manufacturing point of view, Sailfish OS seems to have better governance. In the end it's not only about the licensing, but also about the governance, comms and especially about the point of view.

      One OS which has been doing great FOSS both in licencing, communicating and the governance would be for example Eclipse.