Category Status Reports

Bacula Status Report 26 March 2014

I would like to briefly talk about the following things:

1. Status of Bacula version 7.0.0

2. The Bacula Conference

Status of Bacula version 7.0.0:

What is completed is the following:

  • Bacula 7.0.0 source release
  • Bacula 7.0.0 new features documentation
  • New Bacula documentation look + fixed links
  • A new open source License for the documentation (Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License)
  • The new open source Bacula license, which  is the same AGPLv3 license,  but with attributions and other clarifications kindly edited by the Free Software Foundation.

What is not finished is the following:

  • Testing Bacula 7.0.0 for compatibility with older File daemons.  I think I can finish this by tomorrow (28 March 2014) or by the latest Monday.
  • Building Bacula binaries.  As you probably know, since Scott Barninger left the project after many years (many thanks Scott) we have not found a new packager.  On the other hand, the Bacula Systems packager works for me, and I have arranged for him to build the Bacula 7.0.0.  The first ones will probably be produced in early April, and as time goes we will add more and more, then in subsequent released they should quickly be available.
  • The new Bacula website.  I think this will be well enough along by Friday that we can switch from the current website to the new one.
  • The new Windows binaries, which should be ready by the first few weeks of April (or maybe even sooner).

It will be a lot of work coordinating it, because there are a lot of changes.

The Bacula Conference:

For me the Bacula conference was a great success.  In total there were over 50 people who attended, and everyone stayed until the very end.  The highlights were a Bacula Systems sponsored buffet dinner the evening of the 20th, Bacula Systems sponsored buffet lunch on the 21st, a good number of excellent presentations, a prize (a Samsung Galaxy 10″ tablet), which was won by a young woman answered the question: “Why is 21 March 2014 so special to Kern”.  Quite a few guessed it was my birthday, but she also gave my age!

If you are interested in the presentations (mine includes a mention of the main new features in 7.0.0) please go to the following link:

Bacula Conference Presentations

Status Report

The new Bacula version 7.0.0 is coming along quite well.  We still need to do compatibility testing to ensure that old FDs are compatible.

The new manual is looking nice. Unfortunately it will need to wait another couple months to get the cleanup, but at least the links are now fixed.

The only missing piece for the release is the documentation of the new features that we will finish shortly after the conference (see below).

The new website is almost finished too and will probably replace the old website before the end of next week.

Tomorrow, we are off to the first international Bacula Conference in Berlin where we have a really nice event planned — thanks to our sponsors.  I will officially announce the new Bacula 7.0.0 release, which should be released before the end of the month.

There will be more than 50 people at the conference with people from all over Europe and indeed the world.  Thanks to every who is coming. I look forward to meeting as many as I can, as does the rest of the team.  I also look forward to giving away the 10″ Android tablet to the lucky (or smart) winner!

Status Report 2 March 2014


There are three main topics for this status report:

1. The Next Bacula Release
2. The Bacula Conference
3. Proposed Source Code License Modification

1. The Next Bacula Release
The next Bacula release will be officially announced at the Bacula Conference on the 21st of March, but I want to let you know that I have finished the work of backporting the Enterprise changes made over the last year to this new release.  Normally, as was the case in 2012, those changes would have been integrated into a number of smaller releases.  In 2012, we had 5 released, and would would have had a similar number in 2013, but as you know I froze the releases until I understood the consequences of the fork.  Actually, 5 releases is probably too many, and waiting a year as is the current case is probably too few, so in the future, hopefully we can come closer to a release every six months which I consider appropriate for stable backup software such as Bacula.  This release is rather large with a number of new features.  The git diff is close to 60,000 lines of code, which probably represents in reality some 20-30 thousand lines of changes, so you can see that the Bacula project is far from being dead as some “highly exaggerated rumors” would have it.

2. The Bacula Conference
I am surprised but very please to see how many of you have signed up for the Bacula Conference — thanks, I look forward to seeing you or meeting you as the case may be there.  There are still places available, and if you can come, please do so.  It is being held in Berlin with a dinner offered by Bacula Systems in the evening of 20 March and the conference will take place on the 21st of March.  For more information, please see:

3. Proposed Source Code License Modification
I am considering to modify the Bacula Source License to have one additional “restriction” that would require forks to maintain the attributions. The code will remain AGPLv3 as it currently is, but the new restriction, which is permitted under section 7(b) would be added. At the same time, I propose modifying the header files to include a mention of this restriction.  The main new wording in the LICENSE file would be the following:

1. Redistribution’s and/or modifications of the source code must retain the information including the copyright notices and the attributions that are between the BEGIN_LICENSE and END_LICENSE markers.

2. Redistribution’s and/or modifications of the source code and/or binaries must reproduce the files LICENSE and AUTHORS in the the redistribution and/or in the documentation and/or other materials provided with the distribution.

The two points listed above are not meant to restrict your ability to use, modify, and redistribute or fork Bacula, but are considered by the main author of Bacula to be an essential part of the moral author’s rights (droits d’auteur; Urheberrecht) that permit certain non-alienable author’s rights such as the right to be identified as the author or authors of the work as defined in article 6bis, Berne Convention.

If you have previously forked Bacula and have not followed the above two fundamental points, you must make your fork confirm to them in its entirety prior to using any file or part thereof from this or later releases.

If you have comments or questions about this proposed change, please feel free to contact me via the Bacula email lists or directly:  kern at sibbald dot com.

Best regards,

Documentation License Change


As part of the website redesign (still in progress), we have also reworked the Bacula manuals to fix the broken links between the 5 documents as well as to include a new more modern cover page.  Hopefully before the end of March when the next Bacula release is scheduled (it may be deferred into April if the testing doesn’t go well), I will also have found the time to do a bit of cleanup of the manual and backport the cleanups/clarifications that we have made to the Enterprise manual.

I am considering (90% decided) to switch the license of the Bacula community documentation from the current GNU Free Documentation License to the Community Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International Public License.

For you as users, as far as I can see (I am not a lawyer) there is little difference as the new CC-BY-SA gives you the same rights and is a Free Software license.  The difference is that people who want to copy or fork it will be required to keep the attributions.  To ensure that the attributions are correct I will start a new documentation attributions file probably named DOC-AUTHORS which will contain all the names of the contributors. The purpose of this email is three fold:

1. To solicit your feedback on this possible license change.  For more details see:


2. If you have contributed to the manuals but are not the list and want to be on the list, please send me your name, email address, and a rough idea of  what you contributed.

3. If you do not want your name on this list, please let me know, and I will remove it.

Best regards,

Status Report 07 Feb 2014

Bacula Status report 7 February 2014

First, I would like to thank all of you who have both on and off the Bacula lists sent me very kind emails thanking me and encouraging me.

The main purposes of this email are:

1.  Bacula

2 The Bacula Conference

1. Bacula:

I know that some of you are worried about the Bacula project and where it is going. I want to assure that everything is OK, and that we have quite a number of exciting new features and many other benefits for the community coming up. They have been long planned  and are just now coming to fruition.


As has historically been the case, in addition to a few recent community contributions, there will be some significant contributions from Bacula Systems to the next Bacula version.  Please see the following link for the list of contributions to the Bacula project which is easy for anyone to validate:

The list of flowback contributions to the community from Bacula Systems for the next version (March-April) now has twenty three new features, plus a new product, and that number is growing almost daily so will be even bigger by the time the release is made.  I plan to make the official announcement of these features at the Bacula Conference in Berlin on 21 March 2014.

We also already have a list of four additional major Bacula Enterprise features that will flow back in to a subsequent Bacula community version to be released toward the end of the year.

3. The Bacula Conference

As I mentioned above, the first International Bacula Users and Partners Conference ( will be held in Berlin on the 21st of March 2014.  If you have not registered for this Conference, please do so as seats are filling quickly.  Entrance is free.  You can register at the following link:

During the Conference, I will present Bacula roadmap and make some important announcements for our community. If you want to meet me, other developers and contributors to Bacula as well as hear about Bacula Systems, this is the place to go.

I am excited about the meeting and will be delighted to meet you in Berlin, Germany on the 21st of March and have the opportunity to have a chat with each and everyone.  Also, there will be a dinner on the 20th the eve of the conference, offered by Bacula Systems, so don’t forget to reserve your seat when you register for the Conference day.

Looking forward to seeing you in Berlin,

Kern Sibbald

Bacula Status Report


I would like to speak to you about the following points:

1. The rumors of the death of Bacula (the Community version)
2. Bacula Systems and the FSFE (Free Software Foundation Europe)
3. The future of Bacula (the Community version)

1. The rumors of the death of Bacula (the Community version):

I borrow words from a quote of Mark Twain : The rumors of the death of Bacula are highly exaggerated!

I began working on Bacula 14 years ago (in January 2000), and it has been Open Source from the time it was publicly released in April 2002, and it will remain Open Source. I have been and am fully devoted to Open Source, and in particular to Bacula, which is like my “baby”.

I did inform the Bacula Community several years ago that my personal participation in Bacula would decrease a bit for several years to allow me to focus more on getting Bacula Systems started. In my opinion, that has not been a serious disadvantage for the Bacula project since Bacula Systems over that period has contributed far more code to Bacula than I could have alone over the same period, and as you will see a bit later in this status report, Bacula Systems contributions are absolutely guaranteed to continue in the long run, and even increase.

2. Bacula Systems and the FSFE:

If you have been a long time Bacula user you may recall that I discussed the possibility in 2006-2007 of creating a company, now called Bacula Systems, to ensure the continuation of Bacula when I will no longer be able to personally contribute – say in 10 or 20 years, as well as to provide the financial means to add high-end features to Bacula (a fibre channel network costs about $50K to set up). Much to my surprise 95% or more of the responses I got were very positive. Bacula Systems was created in July 2008, and for the first two years, the Enterprise code base and the Community code base were identical. Unfortunately, that didn’t work financially for Bacula Systems. Companies willing to pay, were willing to pay for features and support but not support alone, so Bacula Systems embarked on development to continue maintenance and improvement of Bacula while at the same time creating mostly plugins to add differentiation to the Enterprise version.

Now this may not sound very Open Source to you, and I understand, because I feel the same way. Were it at all possible, I would give you all of Bacula Systems code, unfortunately, that is not economically feasible at the current time, and yet without Bacula Systems, I fear the Bacula project will die or worse yet fall into the hands of someone incapable of maintaining the high quality we have created.

In mid-2013, Bacula Systems and I began discussions with the FSFE on how to guarantee the long-term survival of Bacula. These discussions, extremely positive on both sides and all points, recently lead to a formal written agreement between myself, Bacula Systems, and the FSFE. There are a number of points in the agreement, but probably the most important of all is that Bacula Systems has now put in writing that it is an Open Source company (at its heart), as it has always proclaimed, and will contribute all the Enterprise code it creates to the Bacula Community code base within at most a 5 year period. One exception is that Bacula Systems is legally unable to contribute certain code encumbered by third-party proprietary license. The 5 year delay gives Bacula Systems the chance to develop Enterprise features that differentiate it, but ensures the continual growth of the Bacula Community code. This model can possibly be used across the industry to ensure the future of open source software in an environment where development costs, particularly for hardware to do testing, are prohibitive to the standard models of today.

5. The future of Bacula (the Community version):

If you have read section 4 above, hopefully if you were not already convinced that Bacula is alive that you can now see that it will have a long and successful future ahead of it. If you have any doubts, please do not hesitate to either send me an email on the bacula-users list or directly to me (if you want it private). Hopefully, by mid-December I will have a blog setup (need a major upgrade of to do so), and I will then fill you in on what next to expect in Bacula.

Thank you for contributing to and/or using Bacula …

Best regards,