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From "George Aroush" <>
Subject Re: Lucene.NET Community Status
Date Wed, 03 Nov 2010 04:05:42 GMT
Hi Everyone,


Rather than responding to each email, I will write up one response.  The
points is in no significant order or priority.


1) IKVM: Since it doesn't give you source code, you end up with Java look
and fell, all the way from API to classes to exceptions.  If this is
valuable option for your need, you can do it with ease; you don't need the
support of ASF or Lucene developers.  Just use IKVM and off you go.  With
this option, you are now further away from .NET'nes that's being asked of
Lucene.Net, but all exiting Lucene resources (books, examples, support,
etc.) is available for you and you can have a .NET version of Lucene the day
Java Lucene is released.


2) Other conversion tools: Using other converter tools (beside JLCA which is
the one I'm familiar with) should be looked at.  Keep in mind that until
when they are tried out, and their quality is analyzed, they are just
another tools beside JLCA.  In addition, since those are different tools,
the output C# code may not be consistent with exiting Lucene.Net code.  If
so, this will cause issue if such a change is at the public API layer; the
port will no longer be backward compatible (at API level) with existing
clients.  My preference is to stick with JLCA, since I'm familiar with it
and know have written scripts to highlight where it falls short.  However, I
would like to see others try out other tools and report back.  I would be
really surprise to see any tool doing much better than JLCA because if such
a tool exist, there would be many ports of other Java projects.  In another
email, I will outline a use-case to test those other tools.


3) .NET'fying Lucene.Net:  If you really want this, just start a new project
at ASF or someone where else.  I really don't see Lucene.Net achieving this
anytime soon per reasons that I pointed out earlier and over the years on
this mailing list.  If you start such a project, it shouldn't be called
Lucene.Net because that new project will produce a C# Lucene which is no
longer compatible with existing Lucene.Net clients as the public API will
now diverge.  In addition, you will also lose, based on how deep .NET'es you
make your Lucene, existing available resources  about Lucene (web, books,
mailing list, etc).  You will also need good knowledge of search engines,
and the internals of Lucene to make this happen.


4) Adding a .NET'es layer: Have a look at the list of classes and APIs
Lucene.Net has to offer (see: -- hmm, looks like I never
created doc for 2.9.x).  Do you plan to cover them all?  Only part of it?
Are you ready to support it?  If so, you can start such a project at ASF or
somewhere else.


5) Support VS 2010: This is a minor issue (if an issue at all).  Just open
the existing project and VS 2010 will ask you if you want to convert it.
Personally, it's always best to support the lowest common compiler,
environment and .NET Framework.  This way, you can support a wider audience
as possible (even mono).  Remember, not everyone wants the source code, or
can use the latest compiler or IDE, most just want the release DLL.  Java
Lucene has always supported older ver. of Java till Lucene 3.0.


6) Lucene.Net on ASF:  This is a big one.  Many corporation and
organization, big and small, will use and ship ASF software over other open
source software with very little, if any, reservation.  The license model of
ASF, the opens, brand reorganization and the process that ASF demands of its
project is well known and sound.  When you grab an ASF project, which has
gone through incubation and graduated, you know you are getting a software
which has been well vetted, is backed with a team that knows about the
software, and the team will be around to back it up and support it.  At ASF,
there is a established process which all graduated projects fallow.
Lucene.Net, since it graduated, has NOT stood up to this level of standard.
Heck, there was only 1 official release back in 2006 of Lucene 1.9 which was
pre-graduation.  This is why Grant has raised this issue, to send us back
into incubation or attic (retire).


7) Committers: There are several committers, few are more dedicated and
active than others.  I was the initial and sole committer since 2004 (even
prior to that on  This change since 2008 when we added
DIGY, Doug and Michael; they all have contributed -- they took my initial
port and cleaned up open issues.  When folks are saying there is 1
committer, I think they mean to say there is only 1 committer who has done
the initial ports.  Let us not forgot to give credit where it's due.


8) Not .NET'fying Lucene.Net and line-by-line port:  I want to say few
things about this even though I pointed them earlier, but just to make it
clear.  While it is true Lucene.Net doesn't have the full fell of .NET'nes
(it's more like the first and second generation of C#) the fact that
Lucene.Net fallows this port model means you can post a question on Java
Lucene mailing list and everyone will know what you are talking about.  It
means if there is a bug in Lucene.Net, you can debug it by doing a
side-by-side run of Java and C# Lucene (no need for deep Lucene or search
engine expertise).  It means existing Lucene resources are available for
you.  It means a bug in Java Lucene also exist in Lucene.Net.  It means a
rock solid Java Lucene is what Lucene.Net will be.


9) Back to incubation:  The reason to go back to incubation is mainly to
make sure the ASF brand that a graduated ASF project is stamped with, holds
to ASF's core.  As is, since Lucene.Net was prompted into graduation, has
failed on this front.  As I pointed out earlier, there hasn't been any
official release other than the one I did way back in 2006 for 1.9.  Having
ASF to offer Lucene.Net as a "graduated" and "stable" project does injustice
to existing graduated ASF projects not to mention the brand ASF.


10) Comparing this project to X:  You can look hard and deep to find reason
why Lucene.Net isn't as successful as project X.  My take on it is, unlike
other most successful open source projects, on ASF or somewhere else,
Lucene.Net has NO active and continues committers who actually get paid to
work on it.  Until when we have a sponsoring entity, any cycles or effort
spent on this project by anyone is going to be an after though even if you
are a dedicated user who is in need of Lucene.Net -- you will most likely
commit a fix or a port to mainly get your need done.  This is also true for
a sponsoring entity, but the sponsoring entity has a broader need.


11) Lucene contrib:  I don't know how many folks know this, but I also
ported a number of Java Lucene contrib codes.  Check the ported list:


So where do we go from here?   Unless if there are further discussions or
questions, I suggest we put our energy and effort on getting actual results
done.  To do so, I will start a new email thread on this subject sometime




-- George

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