Linus Torvalds, creator of Linux, this week signed off the latest release of the operating system that is rattling Microsoft's cage.
This is the release that many industry analysts believe will launch Linux as a viable commercial server operating system.
Version 2.2.0, which IBM is likely to support, includes such goodies as improved support for symmetric multi-processing and will be the first stable version to support various non Intel processors in the kernel configuration tool. These include Sparc, Sparc64 and Alpha chips, as well as Motorola m68k and PowerPC chips on the desktop.
Rob Hailstone, senior analyst at Bloor Research, said symmetric multi-processing support is an important feature, especially as most databases now support Linux. He said Linux could well be a viable option as a commercial server operating system, especially on a standalone database server or a web server.
"It makes sense to have only a light operating system for the database, and Linux is ideal," he said.
Peter Walker, worldwide director of marketing strategy for Santa Cruz Operation (SCO), the first major company to put its weight behind Linux, said: "What we see is a thriving community of software developers using Linux to develop innovative, web-oriented applications."
SCO's 64-bit Unix, known as Project Monterey, is the result of a collaboration between IBM, SCO and Sequent, to combine the best of AIX, Unixware and Sequent's Dynix Ptx.
Sequent has announced that it will replace Dynix Ptx with Unixware Ptx, as the first phase of Project Monterey. (see Newswire 27 January)
Walker said that, like Unixware 7, Monterey would enable developers to run Linux applications on a commercially stable operating system with little more than recompiling of their code.
For more stories, see 28 January issue of 'Computing'
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