A Year Ago: Linux becomes people's choice in China

First published: Wed, 10 Nov 1999 14:21:24 GMT

There is a strong identification between communist China and the open source free OS

The Chinese government has displayed its enthusiasm for the community ethos behind the open source movement by moving towards Linux, thanks to a deal struck with server side computing firm GraphOn.

The deal will allow a variety of server side applications to be run on cost efficient Linux boxes in Chinese universities, military installations and eventually even within the government.

According to GraphOn there is a strong identification between communist China and the open-source free operating system that is taking the western world by storm. "Enthusiasm for Linux is coming from the very highest level of the Government in China," says Robin Ford executive vice president of GraphOn. "There are cultural reasons why they are so interested in Linux in China, because it is open source."

GraphOn concedes however that the Chinese government is probably enthused by its server technology because it provides a simple way of keeping an eye on users' computer activity. "It is all about control but it's not an ugly or a bad control, it's not a big brother sort of thing," says Ford. "It's about cost control and they've looked at the problems that other markets have had with desktop based application and want to avoid them."

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