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By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2005-03-20 Print this article Print

The FSGs funding had risen more than 40 percent over last year and is expected to rise even more significantly going forward. "We have some 35 corporate sponsors now as well as a number of member organizations. Our goal is to quintuple the number of application vendors participating in the group," he said. The FSG wants dozens of new applications on the Linux platform by end of this year, but it is counterproductive to hold Linux distribution vendors to a rigid time frame for supporting the LSB, he said.
But the FSGs efforts to actively recruit ISVs are just beginning. "I believe this is just the tip of iceberg of ISV support for the LSB. While we are actively recruiting software vendors to be part of this effort, and we are aware that this battle will be won over time, it is a multiyear battle," Zemlin said.
The large vendors are also stepping forward to voice their support for the LSB. Scot Handy, vice president for worldwide Linux at IBM, in Somers, N.Y., said that the LSB and IBM share the goal of making it easier for ISVs to target the larger multiplatform Linux opportunity. Wim Coekaerts, director of Linux kernel engineering at Oracle, said the support of open standards would enable Linux to achieve mass enterprise-class adoption. Jeff Hawkins, vice president of Novells Linux Business Office, said the company sees multiple advantages of a well-supported binary standard for Linux. "The LSB clearly has the momentum of the industry and is providing a crucial piece of the ongoing success of Linux," he said. Asked about the next release of the specification, LSB 3.0, Zemlin said this is on track for release later this month and will include cryptography, some key core libraries and a planned C++ update. "This is fairly close to release at this point; we are finalizing bug fixes and preparing the release candidates," he said. Regarding the move to componentize the specification, first reported by eWEEK in January, Zemlin said this is working well. "We have people contributing across a range of different components and working modularly on the standard so that we can drop in different components over time," he said. "We want more to be included in the standard so that it will address the needs of, and attract, a broader set of ISVs, and this modular approach will facilitate that and will bring them onboard as active participants," he said. Turning to the next major release of the LSB specification in about 20 months, Version 4.0, Zemlin said this will be a "massive historic turning point and will see great acceptance from application vendors and users. Hopefully, the LSB will also be a formal ISO standard by then. We are also working with the Chinese government to help with platform certification work as they are adopting the LSB as the core of their emerging Linux standard," he said. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest open-source news, reviews and analysis.

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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