Our View: OS Peace At Last?
Opinion: It's great that Microsoft is striking interoperability deals; the company should move quickly to achieve its integration goals with Novell and pursue negotiations with other Linux distributors.Another week, another Linux bombshell: In late October, it was Oracle offering full support of Red Hat Enterprise Linux; on Nov. 2, it was Novell teaming up with longtime archenemy Microsoft to effect platform integration and patent protection. Together, the two moves signify a tectonic shift in the Linux landscape and big wins for customersif the agreements bear fruit. Right now there is a lot more meat on the Oracle-Red Hat relationship: Oracle already has its Linux code available for download. Microsoft and Novells arrangement right now is just talk. And based on a similar deal Microsoft made with Sun Microsystems two years agowhich has produced few tangible resultswe are going to be skeptical of this deal until results convince us otherwise.
Still, Microsofts deal with Novell has the potential to be more significant in the long run. On the product side, the two companies plan to develop virtualization technologies that will enable Microsoft Windows to run within a virtual environment in Novells SUSE Linux and SUSE Linux to run within Windows, each virtualization scheme drawing on Xen technology. Other areas of coordination will be between Microsofts Active Directory and Novells eDirectory, as well as between Microsoft Office and OpenOffice.org.