Isilon Systems chose FreeBSD because it is a modern, stable, high-performance *NIX operating system with very liberal licensing terms. We needed a strong and complete code base to start from so we can be 100% focused on our own product and have complete liberty to innovate so our product can be as great as it is.
Isilon benefits from using FreeBSD in a number of ways, but the most important benefit is that we are able to leverage the open source efforts of the community to improve our product. Since we’re part of that community, we provide source code back, sponsor specific development efforts, and employ members of the community for contract development – this in turn gives us access to great people and continued access to great software.
In short, FreeBSD is a stable, mature, high-performance operating system with an active development community free from licensing questions and concerns.
So why is it important for us and others to keep FreeBSD free?
FreeBSD is the only choice for individuals or companies who need complete freedom as they innovate. Licenses such as the CDDL and GPL force innovators to be very careful about how and where they build their code, which restricts their design choices and can lead to poor technical decisions or licensing-limbo. A vast majority of Isilon’s innovation is in the kernel and our intellectual property is liberally scattered throughout.
This simply wouldn’t have been possible using another open-source operating system – and licensing operating system source code is a steep barrier to entry.
– Nicholas Kirsch, Director of Software Engineering, Isilon Systems