CA Working on Linux Kernel Intercept Module

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2004-05-24 Print this article Print

Kernel Generalized Event Management is a general facility that will allow users to see events occurring in the kernel; the company also is forming an open-source foundation that will house and support open-source code.

Linux is getting driven deeper into the core products of Computer Associates International.

At its CAWorld conference in Las Vegas this week, CA will make several announcements regarding extended support for Linux and open-source software.

Central to the effort, according to Computer Associates International Inc. officials in Islandia, N.Y., is the formation of a new open-source foundation that will house and support open-source code, which will be made available under open-source licenses, officials said.

CA also will discuss KGEM (Kernel Generalized Event Management), a generic facility that enables kernel events to be communicated to user applications, according to Sam Greenblatt, senior vice president and chief architect of CAs Linux Technology Group.

"It is an intercept module, available on the open-source-code repository SourceForge, which allows any event that occurs in the Linux kernel to be raised to a package [or] an intercept," Greenblatt said.

For example, CA security packages wont have to modify the kernel or anything else, Greenblatt said.

"We are pretty excited about this," he said. "It is the first major step to creating a kernel that will be independent for ISVs. Were also excited about it because we have gotten endorsement from our friends at IBM and [Hewlett-Packard Co.] over it."

Greenblatt said Linux is "the key enabler for pervasive computing." Click here to read more. Mark Barrenechea, senior vice president of product development for CA, added that KGEM involves building management capabilities into the Linux kernel, not just for CA but also for the industry.

Click here to read about CA extending its management tools for Linux. Attendees at CAWorld can also expect to learn more about new patch management solutions, including the Vulnerability Management Service. Also on tap is some significant work by CA in the database and database management areas, including plans for commercial management and databases, Greenblatt said.

Despite the moves, some software developers and users are wary of CAs commitment to Linux. A developer in New Britain, Conn., who works on Linux and open-source software and who has developed software for PalmOne Inc.s PalmPilot, said CA is chasing new revenue opportunities, as any company should. "But their end-of-life policy for products and how they handled this in the past makes for some concern," the developer said.

One of his companys development teams recently selected the open-source database from MySQL AB. "I see no need to look to CA or Oracle [Corp.] or Microsoft [Corp.] for this," the developer said. "But the big question is how companies like CA deal with the threat posed by products like MySQL, [] and such."

To help convince such customers, CA will talk about the findings of a survey—which will be released after the conference—of 500 enterprise customers about Linux and what they want from it. According to the survey, CA will say, customers want five main things: integration with existing applications, patch management, management tools, database tools and Web services tools for Linux.

Click here to read about CA taking the plunge into wireless LAN management. Asked how CA was delivering on these objectives, Barrenechea said integration with Linux is not just about porting software but also about exploiting Linuxs uniqueness. "The ability to do job management, to assign work to processors, requires new code," he said. "Were doing this across security, across our product portfolio, from operations infrastructure to network systems management as well as life-cycle management."

Check out eWEEK.coms Linux & Open Source Center at for the latest open-source news, reviews and analysis.

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Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at


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