Recent news stories have stated that IBM was refusing to support Oracle Linux. Thats not true. Further investigation has shown there was little follow-up on the original Reuters story, and that some of the confusion came because the story didnt put IBMs comments into the proper context.
Starting in October, Oracle began shipping its own Oracle Enterprise Linux. This new Linux is an almost perfect clone of Red Hats RHEL (Red Hat Enterprise Linux). Despite Oracles efforts to win users over to its operating system offering, it has made little progress in getting corporate customers to commit to it.
It is true that IBM spokesman Matthew McMahon said that IBM was not ready to guarantee that its computer programs, such as WebSphere, are compatible with Oracle Enterprise Linux.
Further, that if such programs did turn out to be incompatible, it would be up to Oracle to resolve the issue. And, of course, if Oracle does get traction in the marketplace, and IBMs clients want it, then, IBM will support it.
Lisa Lanspery, IBMs media relations director for infrastructure management, explained, though, that IBM will work with Oracle to support its offerings on Linux. What IBM hasnt done is “certify” its applications to run on Oracle Linux.
For all practical purposes, IBM expects its applications to run on Oracle Linux just as they would run on RHEL. No surprise there. The problem, therefore, isnt really one of technical support or IBM not supporting Oracle.
The problem is that Oracle will have a harder time selling its Linux to corporate customers who insist that an IBM/Oracle software stack has to be certified from top to bottom.