Subject: Re: Big software struggles with open source
From: John Gilmore <>
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 08:27:31 -0700

> Rather than trying to stretch the term "developer" in this way, it might
> be simpler just to emphasize "participants" (or "active participants",

I had similar thoughts last night, when deciding who to congratulate
for the release of freeswan-1.00 (
If your goal is to improve the world, the users who trust your product
with their information are just as important as those who write the


Subject: linux-ipsec: team: congratulations on 1.00!
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 1999 01:59:34 -0700
From: John Gilmore <>

I just want to express my thanks to the entire team for each
person's efforts toward bringing good, automatic network crypto
into wide use.

We've climbed the long 3-year hill.  Now that we have a stable code
base, the beginnings of a release process, real production users, and
some momentum, we should be able to add a significant feature or two
and pop out a new release every few months.

Our Canadian team's pride in good work well done, and the
responsiveness they've shown, is exceptional.  You took challenging
code in an unfamiliar environment and turned it into a stable,
reliable, and understandable product.  Now that you can bend the code
like putty without having it fracture into pieces, here comes the fun
part: making it do more than just the minimum job.

The remarkable trust that our users have placed in us continues to
surprise and please me.  You depend on us to supply you with
facilities that matter a lot to you and your organization.  This, more
than anything else, shows the respect which you hold for the Canadian
team.  We can never reach our goal of securing 5% and eventually all
of the Internet without the energy that you are putting into deploying
the code on real networks, protecting real data.

The intensive and detailed testing, ports, suggestions, and code
provided by our users and other IPSEC implementers have been
invaluable.  Like the third leg of a 3-legged stool, you have made it
possible for us to deliver quality and to trust the product, by
letting us know rapidly and in detail whenever the code or
documentation strays from those paths.  You guide us straight toward
the intersection of "rough consensus and running code", and make our
product easier to use by pointing out the corners that bang or scrape
in your environment.

The IETF IPSEC participants who have worked for even longer at
defining the underlying protocols also deserve a round of thanks.  You
took an easy-looking idea and kept slogging until it worked in the
real world.  You provide the ground on which the 3-legged stool

Hugh Daniel deserves a special thanks for picking up the project when
it was in disarray.  You stretched your skills and your time and your
finances and your prejudices to make it happen, and not only the team
but the entire Internet -- and you yourself -- are better off as a
result of your inspiration and hard work.

We are all part of the team that has made a really useful piece of
infrastructure -- and which will make a much more useful piece over
the next year.  Thanks again for caring, everybody!