Novell Pushing Linux

business2blog: Buy One OS, Get the Second One FreeWell, the answer, due to be announced later today, is breathtakingly simple. Novell will … sell Netware and Linux simultaneously. When a customer licenses Netware, he’ll also get a license for Novell’s recently acquired SuSe Linux included in the price. For Novell, it’s a sensible move: It’s unlikely SuSe will lose many sales through this program, since any customer who’s conservative enough to have held on to Netware all these years is unlikely to leap into Linux. Accordingly, Novell’s making it easy for customers to switch. All the Novell network services that currently come with Netware will work identically on Linux, and with the new licensing program, customers won’t have to buy a new operating system. In essence, they’ll just flip a switch when they’re ready.

Novell seems to be positioning Linux as a straight transition product, much the same way that Apple transitioned Mac users to OSX. It’s interesting that companies are increasingly using Open Sourced foundation API’s to build their value added infrastructure on top of.

I wonder if eventually the industry will look like Microsoft on one end vs. everybody else? Open source lets everyone start off on a current, mature code base and add their value on top. It prevents any kind of hijacking (as seen by “(extlink)Nokia in the Symbian group”:http://news.zdnet.co.uk/business/0,39020645,39149465,00.htm right now.)

I wonder if Open-Sourced API’s will become the lingua-franca of programming? Perhaps this is Software’s reaction to commoditization. When projects are no longer profitible, but have a sizable user base, just open-source them to take the strain of maintaining loss leaders off of your corporate record books.