Marc Fleury, JBoss general manager at Red Hat, and Red Hat CEO Matthew Szulik, wrapped up their keynote presentations at JBoss World 2006 today in Las Vegas and opened the floor up for questions.
They were asked if the JBoss Enterprise Middleware Suite (JEMS), now that it's under the Red Hat umbrella, would split into two product lines, one open source and the other commercial, like the split between Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and Fedora. After a few chuckles, the answer was a firm, "No." ... With the caveat that they will evaluate if the Fedora model makes sense sometime in the future. Fleury seemed to be on the solid "No" side.
Asked if it made sense for the combined Red Hat and JBoss to now seek an open source database to augment their stacks, the executives agreed on the logic, but downplayed any imminent such acqusition, saying they already have a lot of corporate integration work to do. I'd say that Ingres would make a lot of sense in the new Red Hat-JBoss lineup, now or later.
And yet another developer in the audience asked for tighter Java platform integration with RHEL and JEMS. "Who will be the first to tightly integrate Java, JBoss and Linux," the developer asked, "so that we don't have to be systems adminstatrators and can just develop if we want?"
Now that Sun has more clearly declared its intentions to open source Java, the integration of a Java virtual machine into RHEL or Fedora, with the bundled JEMS stack, would seem a foregone conclusion. Yet Szulik seemed luke-warm on the subject, saying he was holding out to see how the Harmony project and GNU Compiler for Java (GCJ) activity shook out. Why pay for Java licenses if you don't have to, he seemed to be saying.
Fleury, on the other hand, said: "I want to get it done just to shut everyone up."
Given that Sun is the number-one OEM partner of RHEL, you'd think this JVM-in-a-RHEL-box mashup would be just good old fashioned customer service on Red Hat's part!