A Small Piece of Mozilla History

(This is a re-post from Facebook so that there’s a more open copy of this photo. Thanks for the suggestion, Ludovic. Both photos were taken with my Firefox OS phone and are available under the terms of the CC BY-SA 3.0 license.)

I’ve been toting this around for more than a decade. The Ultra 2 “Creator” workstation was, I believe, the original web server for http://www.mozilla.org way back in 1998 — and before that I’m pretty sure it was Dan Mosedale’s machine. (update: dmose confirmed this.)

sun ultra 2 workstation
Original web server for http://www.mozilla.com

Today it’s just a piece of Internet history I use as a phone stand at my desk in the Mozilla Mountain View office.

I bet it still has all the old website on it. Maybe I should try to get it running.

Sun Ultra 2 Interior
Opening the Ultra 2 up reveals a Parallax Graphics XVIDEO VIO card.

Update: Dan noted on Facebook that he had used this machine for testing some video conferencing hardware and software for deployment at Netscape back in the late 90s and that it probably has a once-expensive hardware digitizer installed in one of the slots.

I opened up the box and took a photo. It appears top be a Parallax Graphics card and while the Internet Archive doesn’t have anything for Parallax Graphics, I did find this gem that seems to be the right company.

Anyway, no deep point to make here. It’s just a bit of a reminder of our humble beginnings way back in 1998, using hand-me-down hardware to stand up our first website :)

Maybe over the holidays I can find some peripherals and get this thing fired up. It could be fun to light it up for a day and see what’s in there.

4 thoughts on “A Small Piece of Mozilla History”

  1. Man, I definitely remember the machine name “gila” being thrown around somewhere! Is there other historic hardware around still as well or is this the only gem saved from that era?

  2. If it does have an old copy of mozilla.org on there that should totally be thrown up onto a github repo or similar. Maybe even worth adding to the website archive! http://website-archive.mozilla.org/ which should probably be revived a little, and have some more of our old sites added to it (if we still have them!)

    I know we’re always looking to the future, but its nice to be able to look back on old mozilla content/sites for context +/ a trip down memory lane.

  3. That was the original server? Not quite what I expected haha! Man, I am too young to recognize what all this stuff actually is :(

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