Top Linux seller Red Hat is expected to announce the latest version of its premium Linux product on Tuesday, leapfrogging rival Novell and expanding an effort to coax customers away from Sun Microsystems.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux version 4 is the first time Red Hat's commercial product includes the newer 2.6 kernel, or heart, of Linux. Although Red Hat's previous version included some 2.6 features, it was Novell's SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 that was first to include the full list last August, including improvements to communications and memory subsystems.
Red Hat is taking on rivals such as Novell with the latest version of its Linux distribution for businesses
The next version of Red Hat's Enterprise Linux distribution is planned for release next month, and is likely to fully support the Linux 2.6 kernel and include various security features. According to sources close to the company, the release is planned for 14 February to coincide with the LinuxWorld conference in Boston. A UK spokeswoman from Red Hat was unable to confirm the release date on Monday.
Two years after its first attempt fell short, Red Hat is trying again to reach beyond its own employees for help developing its Linux product.
In early 2003, the Raleigh, N.C.-based company launched Fedora, a free Linux package. The company had two objectives. It hoped numerous users would be drawn to the gratis software, making it a good proving ground for components the company was considering for use in its top-selling Red Hat Enterprise Linux package.
Red Hat and IBM will jointly help software vendors certify their applications for Linux in a partnership announced today.
The programme is designed to make it easier for vendors to migrate their software to Linux, and will also give IBM and Red Hat a boost by enlarging the pool of applications certified to run on Red Hat Enterprise Linux with IBM hardware and middleware.
Fedora Core 3 (FC3), released last month as the successor to Red Hat's consumer-grade product that was discontinued a year ago, takes Linux to a whole new level.