Just one year ago, Linux vendors typically made their announcements at small Linux shows with only open-source fans looking on.
Fast forward to 1999 and the biggest computer trade show in North America, Comdex, where Linux announcements are coming fast and furious and the world watches.
Even before the show opened, Linux news was emerging. Computer Associates International is announcing that it is bringing its top network, anti-virus program, InoculateIT, to Linux in the first quarter of 2000.
While Linux suffers from few viruses, CA believes that its growing use as a Windows file server means those Linux servers require high-end, anti-virus protection for users' files. InoculateIT for Linux will not be a second-tier product, according to CA. It will be positioned at the same level as CA's existing versions for Windows NT and NetWare.
CA, an early supporter of Linux with its Unicenter port, also plans to move much more aggressively in the Linux space.
According to Nareder Mangalam, the company's director of security standards, "CA is now supporting Linux as a standard enterprise operating system. We will be building a full suite of CA computing products and services for it." Why? Because "we see Linux being adopted very fast" as a network-server operating system, Mangalam said.
CA's not the only mainstream company throwing in with Linux. Dialogic, an Intel company and leading maker of computer-telephony hardware, will start supporting Red Hat Linux early next year on its PCI hardware. Soon thereafter, Dialogic will bring its DM3 line to Linux. That will prove a boon to anyone interesting in using Linux's stability and speed to build computer-telephony integration applications.
In the meantime, Europe's leading Linux distributor, SuSE, is partnering with preconfigured Linux hardware leader VA Linux Systems to develop a specialised SuSE Linux distribution for VA Linux's workstation and server lines.
VA Linux is not, however, abandoning its own Linux or its partnering with other Linux redistributors. Instead, it will be adding SuSE to its customised Linux/hardware combinations.
The two companies officially join development efforts in December with the first customised SuSE boxes due to appear in the first quarter of 2000.
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For full coverage, see the Comdex '99 Special Report .