A while ago, I blogged about the possibility of a FreeBSD port of DTrace. For the past few months, John Birrell has been hard at work on the port, and has announced recently that he has much of the core DTrace functionality working. Over here at DTrace Central, we’ve been excitedly watching John’s progress for a little while, providing help and guidance where we can — albeit not always solicited 😉 — and have been very impressed with how far he’s come. And while John has quite a bit further to go before one could call it a complete port, what he has now is indisputably useful. If you run FreeBSD in production, you’re going to want John’s port as it stands today — and if you develop for the FreeBSD kernel (drivers or otherwise), you’re going to need it. (Once you’ve done kernel development with DTrace, there’s no going back.)
So this is obviously a win for FreeBSD users, who can now benefit from the leap in software observability that DTrace provides. It’s also clearly a win for DTrace users, because now you have another platform on which you can observe your production software — and a larger community with whom to share your experiences and thoughts. And finally, it’s a huge win for OpenSolaris users: the presence of a FreeBSD port of DTrace validates that OpenSolaris is an open, innovative platform (despite what some buttheads say) — one that will benefit from and contribute to the undeniable economics of open source.
So congrats to John! And to the FreeBSD folks: welcome to the DTrace community!