The Apache Software Foundation (ASF) has passed its first financial audit, migrated its own infrastructure to the cloud from ten-year-old tin, smashed its fundraising target and seen contributors add $625 million-worth of code* over the past fiscal year, as the long-running, volunteer-led foundation gears up for its twentieth anniversary in 2019.
The ASF’s annual report, published today, gives an insight into a developer community in rude good health, with the world’s largest open source foundation’s 300+ free enterprise-grade projects continuing to serve as the backbone for some of the most widely used applications in computing today; not bad for a team of volunteers.
The hottest project over the past year has been Apache Mynewt, the embedded operating system for building, deploying, and securely managing billions of devices, the annual report shows; with Mynewt contributors adding $61,769,063-worth of code in this period to their core component alone.
(Mynewt, first unveiled in 2016, is a tiny – the kernel is just 6kb – hardware-agnostic, composable OS for 32-bit microcontrollers (MCUs) that allow a variety of embedded devices, such as wearables, light bulbs, locks, doorbells, and other devices to connect to the IoT; it has been designed to be easy to build and connect.)
The Foundation’s David Nalley said: “One area that we’ve considered high priority for a while, has been migrating from Apache-owned hardware over to cloud-provisioned systems. This reduces our risks around hardware failure (we have seen many disk failures over the years), and speeds up our provisioning of new services.”
He added: “One particular win, was to move our mail archive services to the cloud, allowing us to turn off two machines that had been in service for eight and ten years. We have also consolidated our domains, much of our DNS provisioning, and certificate management with a single provider. This has reduced our costs and, through its API, enhanced our ability to service the Apache communities.”
The Foundation described itself as in “excellent fiscal shape” with strong ongoing sponsorship from tech’s big names. It finished the year beating its fundraising target by 150 percent after receiving a 88.34 Bitcoin donation from the Pineapple Fund, making a net profit of $548,630 in the last financial year.
ASF: By the Numbers
The ASF currently has 194 committees managing 319 projects and sub-projects, the report shows, with the foundation continuing its guardianship of 190+ million lines of code in the Apache repositories. Over the past year Apache has continued to receive web requests from every Internet-connected country on the planet; with a stunning 35 million page views per week across apache.org.
Over 80 million websites meanwhile use the Apache HTTP Server; which also underpins clouds for Apple, Disney, Huawei, Tata, and countless others; it also provides content management across multi-mission, multi-instrument science data systems at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
ASF President Sam Ruby said: “Our projects continue to remain an all-volunteer effort. These volunteers go well beyond simply contributing code to a codebase. They build sustainable communities that build software that is deployed the range from the smallest portable device to largest data centers on the planet. We continue to set strategy from the bottom up. Project direction is set by those who show up and contribute, be it code, tests, documentation, or simply answering questions on mailing lists. [They are] Free to pursue strategies independent of any vendor’s interests.”