One of the most comprehensive open source intrusion detection systems Suricata held its annual conference in Prague. And because CZ.NIC intensively uses Suricata in its Turris routers to protect users, we have become a proud partner of the event. There, we shared our experience with other Suricata users and showed the technological solution of the Turris Omnia router, where Suricata can be operated with ease.
Since the beginning of the Turris project, we have been very happy for the opportunity to cooperate closely with our community. Without it, the project would not have been where it is now. It was largely the interest of potential users that pushed us to start a campaign on Indiegogo and, again, it was the community that enabled the campaign to become so successful. This success also helped to significantly broaden the community of users and expand it from the Czech Republic to the world.
A couple of weeks ago, I got an email informing me that it had been almost three years since my entry into the Turris project, and I could now purchase the router for a symbolic price of one crown. I did that right away to test for my colleagues whether the system works well; however, it also brought back nostalgic memories. Because three years ago I had the same goal – to test whether everything was working properly – when I filled what was probably the first router lease contract. Those three years have gone by in a flash, so it is perhaps a good time to stop and look back.
It was the first time CZ.NIC has participated at such a big fair and the decision was last moment one. We wanted to find partners and introduce the router to public. Turris Omnia is on the market for several months but seems to interest only linux geeks. Therefore it was a pleasant surprise that the public at CeBit really liked it.
What am I talking about? The first Turris Omnia routers, of course! By this moment, the first routers should be unpacked and pleasing their new owners. Not many of our projects in CZ.NIC brought us as much joy and as many troubles at the same time. The joy came right at the beginning. First prototypes were finished in record time. Tests showed that despite the great performance and a significant number of connectors we managed to maintain a very compact size and reasonable consumption. Naturally, the main joy came when during our Indiegogo campaign, we collected the required amount of USD 100,000 in less than 24 hours (the total amount as of today is almost twelvefold). The reception in the world media was also great.
Depending on your age, you either might or might not have used Telnet to connect to remote computers in the past. But regardless of your age, you would probably not consider Telnet for anything you currently use. SSH has become the de facto standard when it comes to remote shell connection as it offers higher security, data encryption and much more besides.
It is hard to believe, but it is almost half a year since the Omnia campaign started on Indiegogo. In that time, much has changed. Most importantly, we now know that there is a place on the market for a high-end open-source router – we have one million US dollars to prove it :).
About two weeks ago I was on the annual openSUSE Board face to face meeting. It was great and you can read reports of what was going on in there on openSUSE project mailing list. In this post I would like to focus on my other agenda I had while coming to Nuremberg. Nuremberg is among other things SUSE HQ and therefore there is a high concentration of skilled engineers and I wanted to take an advantage of that…
The title, which I took the liberty to borrow from the German site MacLife.de, quite nicely captures the pleasant surprise we experienced during the campaign for Turris Omnia. I admit that the amount of collected money came as a bit of a surprise even to us. Just by the way, in our guessing competition among the team members, the most daring guess was USD 560 thousand, almost USD 300 thousand less than was eventually collected. We perceived this campaign only as a test, whether there is any interest in the market. And now we know there is, especially when we remind ourselves that certainly not everyone would contribute to the crowdfunding. Sending money to some of such campaigns means that the person prefers a pig in a poke to the bird in the hand. It already happened many times that a promising-looking project simply wasn’t finished or that the result didn’t live up to the original promises. Another problem is that businesses do not usually purchase through such campaigns, as it is not simple for them in terms of accounting. This also makes the collected amount a great promise for future.