[Linux-aus] Fwd: CNET news.com: Open-source shifts spell an end for UnitedLinux

Arjen Lentz arjen at mysql.com
Sat Jan 24 15:34:01 UTC 2004

Open-source shifts spell an end for UnitedLinux
Last modified: January 23, 2004, 7:37 AM PST
By Stephen Shankland 
Staff Writer, CNET News.com


NEW YORK--UnitedLinux, a four-company consortium formed to counterbalance
Red Hat's dominance in the Linux market, is all but dead. 

"The legal entity exists, but I shut the lights out," former UnitedLinux
general manager Paula Hunter said in an interview Thursday at the LinuxWorld
Conference and Expo here. Hunter is now channeling her Linux collaboration
energies into a new job: director of business development on the East Coast
for the Open Source Development Labs. 
The shutdown marks the end of an ambitious effort to attract more hardware
and software partners, standardize Linux, and boost research and
development. Instead, it was OSDL--a more neutral coalition in the Linux
industry and the employer of Linux leader Linus Torvalds--that succeeded
where UnitedLinux failed. 

"It's where we would have liked to have gone with UnitedLinux," Hunter said.
"OSDL already has got the industry partners engaged--software and hardware
companies and end users." 

Dramatic changes in the Linux landscape triggered the demise of UnitedLinux.
Most prominently, one of its founding members, the SCO Group--previously
Caldera International--has abandoned its Linux software business in favor of
suing IBM and demanding that Linux users pay it based on its assertion that
the open-source operating system is tainted with SCO's Unix intellectual

But SCO refused to resign from UnitedLinux. "As long as they remained a
member, it remained impossible for us to begin new projects," Hunter said. 

SCO's Linux reversal isn't the only change, though. SuSE Linux, whose
software formed the foundation for a version shared by all four companies,
has been acquired by Novell. Along with that acquisition will come an
endorsement from IBM, the loudest Linux advocate, in the form of a $50
million investment in Novell. 

SuSE's president, Richard Seibt, said Wednesday that his company will
continue to cooperate with the other two UnitedLinux partners, Conectiva in
Brazil and Turbolinux in Japan. 

It's good that UnitedLinux is fading, Illuminata analyst Gordon Haff said.
SuSE achieved enough weight to counterbalance Red Hat on its own, and the
consortium is now a mere "distraction," he said. 

[end of article]

Arjen Lentz, Technical Writer, Trainer
Brisbane, QLD Australia
MySQL AB, www.mysql.com

Brisbane 2 Feb 2004 (5 days): Using & Managing MySQL Training
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