By Steven Vaughan-Nichols  |  Posted 2005-07-07 Print this article Print

The trio of companies is also said to be looking for other Linux partners. In particular, companies such as Xandros Inc. that already use Debian as the basis for their distributions are said to be being approached. The new server also will be built around LSB (Linux Standard Base) 2. All of the involved companies had previously joined together to support the LSB 2 in the LCC (Linux Core Consortium).
This is not the first time that Linux vendors have tried to pull together to create a common distribution. In 2002, UnitedLinux brought together SuSE, Caldera (now The SCO Group Inc.), Conectiva S.A (now part of Mandriva) and Turbolinux. But the UnitedLinux alliance fell apart when SCO turned against Linux.
Read more here about the demise of UnitedLinux. Ransom Love, co-founder of Caldera and the catalyst behind the creation of UnitedLinux, today is a director at Progeny. Ian Murdock, founder of both Progeny and the Debian distribution, as well as CEO of Progeny, would neither confirm nor deny the story. Murdock did say, however, that the plan as outlined "makes eminent sense, doesnt it?" When pressed, Murdock went on: "For the LCC to be successful, we have to convince the multitude of regional/custom distros to unite around a common core, because it is the collective power of these smaller distros that make them a force to be reckoned with." Therefore, Murdock said, "Given that the majority of these distros are based on Debian, the LCC needs a strong Debian story to get many of them onboard and, by extension, to be successful." "I guess the real question is whether the world needs another RPM-based distro with Debian support sort of stuck on the side, or whether it makes more sense to take Debian, which already has global reach, and seek to make it more compatible with the current market leaders by focusing on LSB compliance and RPM compatibility. "Such a thing might finally result in a viable LSB reference implementation, too, leading to a virtuous circle that benefits all Linux standards," Murdock said. Mandriva and Turbolinux did not respond to requests for comments. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest open-source news, reviews and analysis.

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is editor at large for Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to becoming a technology journalist, Vaughan-Nichols worked at NASA and the Department of Defense on numerous major technological projects. Since then, he's focused on covering the technology and business issues that make a real difference to the people in the industry.

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