Compaq and Red Hat Combine Forces to Advance Linux

Compaq Computer Corp. (NYSE: CPQ) and Red Hat Software, Inc. have announced a development and marketing agreement that will likely add to the mounting momentum of the Linux open-source operating system (OS) movement.

Enhanced compatibility between Compaq Tru64 UNIX and the Red Hat Linux OS package was a star of the deal, which will also make available additional Linux-ready platforms — certified via Red Hat Linux 6.0 — for selected Compaq Deskpro systems, along with AP, SP, and XP professional workstations.

The technological side of this week’s announcement complements moves Compaq made in March, making Linux support available for its AlphaServer series, and its Intel-driven ProLiant and Prosignia servers, along with the XP1000 professional workstation.

On the marketing front, the agreement will set in motion initiatives involving Compaq’s ActiveAnswers and Red Hat’s Kick Start programs, and will focus on training for the Compaq sales force and channel partners; documentation and tools to improve serviceability, performance and ease of installation; and customer-focused activities such as seminars, trade shows and the ever-popular telemarketing.

“This agreement with Red Hat and the newest offerings of Linux on the desktop will enable us to deliver the appropriate mix of Tru64 UNIX and Linux so that customers can achieve seamless interoperability, compatibility, availability and scalability to meet the full range of their enterprise computing needs,” commented Enrico Pesatori, Senior Vice President and Group General Manager of Compaq’s Enterprise Computing Group.

Compaq and Red Hat executives indicated that a critical objective of the expanded relationship between the two companies is to ensure that programs can be created in a single source code implementation, compiled on either Compaq Tru64 UNIX or Red Hat Linux, allowing customers to exploit the benefits of both.

Aberdeen Group analyst Joyce Becknell stated that “this announcement highlights Compaq’s commitment to a strategic relationship with Linux vendors, and gives additional credibility in the eyes of corporate users who are investigating Linux solutions for the enterprise.”

In Other Linux News

Corel Corp. (Nasdaq: COSFF; TSE: COS) this week announced the formation of its Linux Advisory Council, a forum that will bring together leaders from the open-source community and the expanding realm of commercial Linux in order to discuss challenges and opportunities, current and forthcoming. The first meeting will take place in Ottawa, Canada, running June 14 & 15.

“We have seen how the Linux movement works and it’s been very successful,” observed Dr. Michael Cowpland, President and CEO of Corel. “We want to follow the ideology of the Linux community, and ensure that the core principles are kept alive in the commercial environment.” Linus Torvalds, the creator of Linux, will participate as a member of the council.

The Linux Store, run by EBIZ Enterprises (OTC BB: EBIZ) added to the spate of Linux-related announcements by debuting an “overhaul” of its site, featuring the addition of new lower priced configurations and the official debut of Nebula, their Beowulf class supercomputer.

“The site redesign is a direct result of customer input on how we could better serve our increasing customer base in this growing phenomenon,” said John Wise, CIO of EBIZ.

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