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Dell Expands Linux Offering

By Matthew Beale
May 28, 1999 12:00 AM PT

Amidst a flurry of moves made by IBM to assert its presence in the expanding Linux operating system (OS) market, Dell Computer (Nasdaq: DELL) this week announced several initiatives with, apparently, much the same intention.

Dell Expands Linux Offering

Dell, who had made an equity investment in Linux leader Red Hat Software in April, has established a dedicated section of its Gigabuys.com online store where customers can shop for Linux-related development tools and software packages. Purchases can be made either as stand-alone transactions or in conjunction with their Dell desktop, workstation or server acquisitions.

Significantly, Dell has also announced the factory installed, US availability of Red Hat's recently released Linux 6.0 on select, certified configurations of Dell Optiplex business desktop computers, PowerEdge servers and Dell Precision Workstations.

Dell has made the latest Red Hat Linux release available to the European market factory installed on its Precision Workstations, and plans to make similar moves in Asia-Pacific in the near future.

A sort of Linux information clearinghouse has been added to Dell's Web Site as well. "The Dell direct model provides customers worldwide with an ideal way to obtain Linux-related products, developments tools and information, stated Joe Marengi, senior vice president of the Dell Relationship Group.

Red Hat in the Ring

VisualWorks Non-Commercial 3.1, by ObjectShare, (Nasdaq: OBJS) has been bundled with the Red Hat Linux 6.0 release which is currently available.

According to Brenda Friedrich, VisualWorks product marketing manager, "VisualWorks is the first enterprise development environment available for Linux that will enable developers to build applications that can leverage the reliability of Linux in delivering true mission critical applications in their business."

Applixware, IBM's ViaVoice and Star Office are included with the Red Hat 6.0 release, which is available for purchase from the company's Web site. Other package features include the new Linux 2.2 kernel, the Red Hat Package Manager (RPM), which handles installation and updates, and symmetrical multiprocessor support (SMP).

"The breadth of application support and high-end features like SMP support illustrate the maturity of the Linux operating system as an enterprise server platform," commented Bob Young, Red Hat's CEO. Founded in 1994, Red Hat is one of several companies that packages Linux, offering services and support.


Linux.Com opened its virtual doors recently, with a mission "to enrich the Linux community by providing a centralized place for individuals of all experience levels to learn (and teach) the power and virtues of the Linux Operating System." VA Linux Systems was granted the sought after domain name, and claims to "have never forgotten what Linux is really about," freely offering support and a wide range of information

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