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Thread: Should the Analyzer Plugin (not open source) be in the default Spoon build

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  1. #1
    dmoran Guest

    Exclamation Should the Analyzer Plugin (not open source) be in the default Spoon build

    The visualization aspect of the changes to Spoon to support the Pentaho Agile BI initiative presents an interesting challenge. Currently the best visualization tool that we have at Pentaho is Pentaho Analyzer (formerly LucidEra's ClearView.) The first milestone of Agile BI, which is now available, includes Spoon with a special build of Analyzer. As such, the current download can no longer be called open source. This has repercussions like not being able to host it on or maybe offending someone.

    After some internal debate, we believe that we need to support both including Analyzer, as well as supporting a fully open source option. Our current plan is to use the plugin architecture that was added to Spoon in the first milestone to allow the visualization to be changeable. This would allow JPivot and eventually PAT to be used instead.

    The next question is how should Spoon be packaged? Fully open source with the ability to drop in Analyzer or with Analyzer included by default and have the ability to remove it?

    We are sensitive to the fact that this may be an issue for people and would like to talk about it now and get some good community feedback early in the development cycle. If you are passionate about this topic, please give your opinion. If you really don't care, and think there are better things we can be worrying about, let us know that too. Also - Pentaho is not licensed to open source Analyzer so that would not be an option worth discussing.

    Last edited by dmoran; 12-11-2009 at 02:43 PM.

  2. #2


    I prefer a fully open source CE with the possibility to add closed source functionality.
    As things are now, it is easy to make a clear distinction between an open source CE and an EE with closed source components. Adding closed source components to the core CE will blur this distinction.
    Apart from keeping a clear difference between CE and EE, having a project in the CE that is not fully open source will mean either the entire CE has to be moved away from SF, or Pentaho and the community will have to start explaining people the CE is open source and on SF, except for PDI that can't be hosted there because it is open source-ish but does contain some closed source software.

    Of course the Analyzer is a great tool, and users should be able to change to it as their default visualization technology as easily as possible. A mechanism to change the visualization technology of choice to Analyzer could later be used to change other (PDI) component technologies as well.

    In the long run, the CE can only benefit from extra functionality. It doesn't matter if this functionality is open or closed source, but IMHO the default distribution should be open. My 2 cents...



  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006


    Like Bart, I would prefer the download to be 100% open source.
    The model where you download and have to uninstall / remove functionality before it's 100% open source again is IMO a very bad idea.

    The ability to load something like visualization via a plugin would of course be awesome

    kind regards,

    kind regards,

    Roland Bouman
    @rolandbouman on twitter
    Author of "Pentaho Solutions" (Wiley, ISBN: 978-0-470-48432-6)
    Author of "Pentaho Kettle Solutions" (Wiley, ISBN: 978-0-470-63517-9)

  4. #4


    I agree with Roland and Bart: the CE spoon build should stay 100% open. It doesn't make much sense imho to download something and then have to remove a part of it to have it back open again.

    The plugin option is of course the best one. As far as this is something that will be only available in the future, you may have the open spoon build on sourceforge, and the "agilebi-spoon" with the analyzer downloadable directly from (ie the way you're doing now ;-). Clear documentation should explain the situation, the differences between the two versions, ...

    Once the analyzer will be ready as a spoon plugin, I expect the end user to be able to install (and uninstall) it at any time, and he will have to be informed that he's moving away from 100% opensource.

    I personally like a lot the way Ubuntu deals with a similar situation: if you want to install proprietary drivers (like Nvidia Video Cards ones), you have to enable some extra repositories, and it is made very clear that those drivers are proprietary when you install them.

    I'm a long term Debian fan as well, but I perfectly understand that opensource "radicalism" brings important market / business values limitations (that's why LGPL and her friends were born in fact ;-)


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009


    I agree with all previous repliers; Spoon CE should remain open. Having a separate download for an Analyzer plugin would be best imho.

    best, Jos

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005


    I support the views expressed in the previous post. PDI as full OS download and the option to download and install the Visualizer plug-in separately.


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