[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: GNU licenses

From: alexander . terekhov
Subject: Re: GNU licenses
Date: 25 Oct 2006 15:47:44 -0700
User-agent: G2/1.0

The open-source movement has provided the impetus for another form of
patronage. Companies such as RedHat or Linuxcare need free software to
succeed to be successful themselves. As a result, these companies hire
the producers of free software to ensure the supply, provide good
public relations and provide in-house expertise for the support
operations that make up the companies income.
This is in addition to the general desire on the company's part to do
the right thing; open-source is still a social movement.

Eric Raymond argues that this form of patronage works, in part, because
the companies dispensing the patronage are leaders in the field, and
thus benefit in proportion.[20] If this is true, then it also
represents the break-point for this form of patronage. As the market
becomes more competitive, a significant free-rider problem appears:
companies that do not have the overhead of patronage and can offer the
same services at reduced cost.[13]

"As of this moment, Oracle is announcing full support for Red Hat
Linux," Ellison told thousands of attendees at the Oracle OpenWorld
conference here. "If you are a Red Hat support customer, you can very
easily switch from Red Hat support to Oracle support."

Becoming an operating-system company is one of a series of bold
attempts at growth by the Redwood Shores, Calif.-based software
company, which in recent years also has acquired small and large
rivals. Many major computing companies have embraced Linux, but until
now, all have chosen partnerships with Linux companies rather than
direct competition.

Ellison argued that customers of the Unbreakable Linux 2.0 service will
enjoy lower costs, better bug fixes and legal protections compared with
Red Hat. Software updates cost $99 a server, while technical support
costs $399 for a two-processor server and $999 a year for a larger
system, Ellison said. And unlike Red Hat, Oracle will let anyone
download the software for free.

"We will backport your bug-fixes" to earlier Linux versions, he said.
"We will indemnify you from intellectual property problems. And our
support costs way less than half of what Red Hat charges," Ellison

Oracle, like the CentOS project, wants to clone Red Hat's Linux based
on the source code produced by the company, not create a new Linux
variant. And Ellison promised that software certified for Red Hat's
Linux will still work.

"If your application runs on Red Hat today, that application will run
unchanged when you're getting Oracle support," Ellison said. "It's very
important not to fragment the Linux market. Every time Red Hat comes
out with a new version, we're going to sync our version with that
version. All we add is bug fixes."

Red Hat didn't immediately comment. Red Hat shares fell sharply in
after-hours trading, down more than 10 percent to $17.45 a share.

Oracle will sell support to any Red Hat Linux customer, not just
customers of Oracle products, Ellison said.

Alexander Terekhov wrote:
> Alexander Terekhov wrote:
> >
> > John Hasler wrote:
> > >
> > > > Well, you can also get whitebox Linux or something like that...
> >
> > [Red Hat's free-riders]
> >
> > >
> > > White Box Linux and Centos.
> >
> > WBL is not well supported. Centos has more friends (Sun Microsystems
> > and OpenSolaris Project). At some point Red Hat will have to fire core
> > programmers and only packagers will stay (free-riders do not have the
> > overhead of patronage and can offer the same patching services).
> Now, this is fun:
> (Oracle CEO targets Red Hat with half-price offer)
> -------
> 31 minutes ago
> SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq:ORCL - news) is taking
> aim at Red Hat Inc. (Nasdaq:RHAT - news), the top distributor of Linux
> operating system software, with an offer to provide half-price technical
> support to Red Hat Linux users, Chairman and Chief Executive Larry
> Ellison said on Wednesday.
> Speaking at the company's annual user conference in San Francisco, the
> technology industry's most outspoken executive said Oracle was seeking
> to solve key problems that have held back the development of Linux among
> big corporate customers.
> "As of this moment, Oracle is announcing full support for Red Hat Linux,"
> Ellison told thousands of attendees at the company's annual OracleWorld
> conference. "The goal is to enhance and speed the adoption of Linux."
> "Our support costs less than half what Red Hat charges," Ellison added.
> Linux is the most popular varient of open source software, which allows
> developers to share code in order to focus on creating new features
> themselves. Software like Linux allows customers to use programs for
> free, paying only for custom features, maintenance and technical
> support.
> (Additional reporting by Eric Auchard) 
> -------


reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]