This proposal is dead, as the original team have decided to move to apache themselves Cassandra


Helenus is a column orientated p2p storage mechanism designed to deal with large amounts of data. It is a fork of the Cassandra project []


We propose to move future development of Helenus/Cassandra to the Apache Software Foundation in order to build a broader user and developer community. We hope to encourage contributions to and use of Helenus in internet companies. We have forked from the 'Casandra' project as the core developers were assigned to other projects and have no time to develop cassandra further.


Cassandra was initially open sourced by Facebook in July, where it was presented in SIGMOD 2008 a excellent technical presentation on it's capabilities is available here []


Cassandra/Helenus attracted a great deal of developer attention based on its unique feature-set and the underlying technology. We believe that Helenus's vision is unique in the field.

The Helenus project team is interested in joining the Apache Software Foundation for several reasons:

  • To help the project attract contributors who will feel more comfortable with the licensing coming through a respected, well known and established organization such as Apache.
  • To facilitate the growth of a broader community of users. The project currently lacks sufficiently clear direction, leadership, and process; we believe the project will benefit greatly from Incubator mentorship.
  • To Foster greater acceptance of this type of infrastructure within organisations

Current Status


One of the aims of moving to the incubator is to build the meritocracy vital to a successful open source project.


Many members of the team are 'users' of cassandra in various organizations. We have banded together to try and save this project.

Core Developers



Helenus provides another alternative to groups that require access to large scale data storage from online web applications.


The Helenus codebase is Apache 2.0 licensed, and currently hosted at Google Code.

Known Risks / Avoiding the Warning Signs

Orphaned Products

Most of the active developers aim to become Apache committers and have a long term interest in developing and maintaining the code.

The main reason we are incubating this is because we feel the current project has been orphaned, and the committers do not want the project to die.

Inexperience with Open Source

Several of the committers have worked on other open source projects, including the Apache projects hadoop and httpd.

Homogenous Developers

The Helenus project team consists of several individuals who are installing this product in their respective organisations, and doing research with it.

The current list of committers includes developers from several different companies and universities . The committers are geographically distributed across the U.S., Europe, and Australia.

Reliance on Salaried Developers


Relationships with Other Apache Products

No direct relationship

An Excessive Fascination with the Apache Brand

The Helenus team will strive to avoid inadvertent abuse of the Apache brand and will work with the Incubator to ensure the brand policies are respected. Although the impact of the Apache brand cannot be ignored, it is more a valuable by-product of joining the Apache Software Foundation than an aim in itself: our primary motivation is to enable Helenus to benefit from the Apache Incubator's experience with the community building. This would provide us with direction and help identify ways to improve our processes.


Initial Source

the code is currently hosted on a Google-Code Subversion server.

All dependencies have Apache compatible licenses.

Source and Intellectual Property Submission Plan

Helenus/Cassandra has already been released under the Apache 2.0 license.

External Dependencies

TBD - The dependencies all have Apache compatible licenses. These include BSD, CDDL, CPL, MPL and MIT licensed dependencies. .

Required Resources

Mailing lists

One the project is approved, the following mailing lists will be used for discussion.

  • <<MailTo(helenus-dev AT incubator DOT apache DOT org)>>
  • <<MailTo(helenus-commits AT incubator DOT apache DOT org)>>
  • <<MailTo(helenus-user AT incubator DOT apache DOT org)>>

Subversion Directory

Issue Tracking

JIRA Helenus

Initial Committers

  • Ian Holsman
  • Johan Oskarsson
  • Matt Revelle


We do not represent the companies we work for (and we all work for unaffiliated companies)




  • Ian Holsman
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