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Re: Will Redhat Become a Division of AOL Time-Warner? (fwd)


While a merger between AOL / Time Warner and Redhat might
set off some, I'd think it would be something to look
forward to.
Think about it, linux is already released on the gnu
license, which means that can't change anything without
releasing it the same way.
Many of the programs in a distribution are the same way, so
they will only have the advantage of all of AOL Time
Warner's money to help them along.
Another thing to consider is that AOL Time Warner is
possibly doing this to give them an edge in an alternative
to the MS giant.  Their experience with MS in the past has
not always gone well and this might be the very investment
of big dollars into linux that the community has been asking

Changes will probably be made.  Distribution system will
probably get better.  You'll probably see more linux in
retail stores sitting next to all those barrows of AOL CDs. 
Support can improve.  Yes we might pay for support beyond
installation, but this might be exactly what big companies
need to help them make the switch to linux as not only a
server OS but a desktop OS.

Think about everyone getting a couple linux CDs in the mail
as often as they get those AOL CDs.


"John J. Boyer" wrote:
> Hello,
> I'm a bit concerned that AOL Time Warner is thinking of buying Redhat.
> Mergers and acquisitions usually turn out badly for customers and users.
> The latest example is something very close to many of us - the merger of
> Henter-Joyce and Blazie Engineering to form Freedom Scientific. Many
> people, including myself, have had bad experiences with this company. But
> at least Linux is in the public domain, so if AOL Time Warner ruins
> redhat, we'll have other companies to turn to or can simply distribute it
> ourselves.
> John
> --
> Computers to Help People, Inc.
> http://www.chpi.org
> 825 East Johnson; Madison, WI 53703
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> Date: Sun, 20 Jan 2002 08:41:07 -0500
> From: Amy Ruell <aruell mediaone net>
> To: (Recipient list suppressed) @mail.voyagerhosting.net
> Subject: Will Redhat Become a Division of AOL Time-Warner?
> >From: David Poehlman poehlman1 home com
> >AOL in Negotiations to Acquire Red Hat
> >Deal for Distributor of Linux Operating System Could Lead to a New
> >Challenge
> >of Microsoft
> >
> >  By Alec Klein
> >Washington Post Staff Writer
> >Saturday, January 19, 2002; Page E01
> >
> >AOL Time Warner Inc. is in talks to buy Red Hat Inc., a prominent
> >distributor of a computer operating system, an acquisition that would
> >position the media giant to challenge archrival Microsoft Corp.,
> >according
> >to sources familiar with the matter.
> >
> >Red Hat, a publicly traded firm based in Durham, N.C., sells products
> >and
> >services based on the Linux operating system, the freely available
> >software
> >developed collaboratively by volunteers. Linux is designed for a wide
> >variety of gear, running corporate computer servers and consumer
> >devices
> >such as personal computers, cell phones and video games.
> >
> >The Red Hat negotiations -- which are still fluid -- are the latest
> >indication that AOL Time Warner, the world's largest media company, is
> >looking for alternatives to software made by Microsoft, whose Windows
> >operating system runs 90 percent of the world's PCs. The longtime
> >competitors have fought over an array of rival consumer technologies
> >lately,
> >including online subscription services, instant-messaging systems and
> >Web-based video and audio players.
> >
> >Officials of AOL, Red Hat and Microsoft declined to comment.
> >
> >To counter Microsoft's desktop hegemony, New York-based AOL Time Warner
> >could use the deal to couple its America Online software, the market
> >leader
> >with more than 33 million Internet subscribers, with Red Hat's
> >operating-system technology, sources said.
> >
> >The AOL online software, which consumers can install free from the Web
> >or a
> >compact disk, is now designed to run on Microsoft's Windows operating
> >system. But the AOL software could be configured to override Windows
> >and
> >launch a version of Red Hat's Linux operating system, sources said.
> >
> >With such a move, AOL Time Warner could potentially make significant
> >inroads
> >into Microsoft's bread-and-butter business. An even greater challenge
> >to
> >Microsoft would be for AOL Time Warner to develop a rival operating
> >system
> >that works exclusively with the media giant's own Internet service
> >provider,
> >its Web browser or proprietary content.
> >
> >This is not the first time AOL Time Warner has explored alternatives to
> >Windows. There were rumblings last year, during a flash point in the
> >rivalry
> >between the two tech titans, when AOL Time Warner was scouting for an
> >acquisition or partnership with a firm that could provide a competing
> >operating system.
> >
> >AOL Time Warner has already tried to counteract Microsoft on other
> >fronts,
> >including rebuilding its Netscape Web browser business to better
> >compete
> >against Microsoft's dominant Internet Explorer. Netscape technology has
> >been
> >incorporated into a Gateway Inc. tabletop Internet terminal and Sony
> >Corp.'s
> >PlayStation 2 video-game console. Linux also runs the Sony product.
> >
> >It was unclear yesterday how much money Red Hat could fetch. With a
> >market
> >capitalization of about $1.45 billion and about 600 employees
> >worldwide,
> >Red
> >Hat reported $68.2 million in revenue in the nine months ended Nov. 30,
> >down
> >10 percent over the same period a year earlier.
> >
> >The software company reported a profit of $1.8 million, or a penny per
> >share, in the nine months, compared with a loss of $10 million, or six
> >cents
> >a share, in the year-ago period.
> >
> >Red Hat makes its money by packaging Linux for commercial and consumer
> >use
> >and by providing services and support to customers who use it. The
> >operating
> >system itself is freely available on the Internet -- thanks to an
> >initiative
> >by a programmer named Linus Torvalds who organized volunteers to write
> >the
> >original source code. Unlike Microsoft, which does not fully divulge
> >its
> >code, the Linux code is available to anyone who agrees to make
> >modifications
> >publicly available.
> >
> >Linux has yet to be adopted widely by consumers, largely because it
> >requires
> >some technical proficiency to install. But it is popular with the tech
> >crowd
> >and, according to industry estimates, runs about 30 percent of all
> >computers
> >  servers -- the powerful computers that function as hubs on a network.
> >
> >Red Hat has claimed such big clients as Amazon.com Inc. and
> >International
> >Business Machines Corp., providing software and support for IBM servers
> >that
> >use the Linux operating system.
> Too many messages and not enough time, contact aruell mediaone net and
> subscribe to Amy's filters and forwards today!!!
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Ron Marriage
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