In a keynote speech Wednesday at the Enterprise Linux Forum, Red Hat CTO Michael Tiemann bluntly stated that today the company’s “focus is on the enterprise.”Some feel that this focus shift at Red Hat might have some negative trend to the Linux desktop race, as Red Hat is the No1 backer of the project via the Gnome project. In last month’s interview with Havoc Pennington though, he affirmed us that work on the desktop continues more avidly than ever before.
Elsewhere, threading improvements to the latest incarnation of Red Hat Inc.’s Enterprise Linux platform should make Java application server and database users take notice. The addition should help narrow the gap between Unix and Linux for big business.
I am a happy use of both Fedora and Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Red Hat is doing the right things with Fedora and RHEL.
I agree with the CTO’s statements. Sure you can accuse Red Hat of selling out to the man but let’s be honest, there isn’t much money to be made in selling Linux to desktop end users. This is not to say that it shouldn’t be done, but it is hard to stay alive doing solely that.
I think Red Hat’s approach with Fedora is perfect for what they are trying to accomplish. Make serious inroads into the enterprise and then by the trickle down effect, pass along the benefits to the desktop. Fedora allows Red Hat to have (pardon the bad pun) two hats in the ring. They can build on their enterprise strength while pushing the desktop in an open way but have the benefits of Fedora will reach into the enterprise eventually.
I think what Red Hat is doing here is pretty smart. Making money where it should really be made (businesses) while letting the end user reap the benefits of Linux for free (Fedora).
Can someone please enlightenmen me? What’s the big deal about this Fedora thing? Sure I’ve seen screenshots and yeah it looks nice, but wait isn’t this going to be an Enterprise product? Usually, enterprise products mean server products, right? Then who gives a rat’s ass about a GUI on a server product. Especially when it comes to Unix, or Unix-like in Linux’s case.
I have sort of been trying to follow this Fedora thing and Redhat Enterprise server thing only because we’re an IBM shop here and due to that fact Linux would make sense in my organization. Although, it really does kill me to say that considering how BSD loyal I am. Just had to let everyone know.
I’ve read that many enhancements have been made to Redhat’s Linux (whatever version they’re calling it these days) to run better on IBM hardware such as the iSeries. This interests me because we have and iSeries model 810 which could be LPAR’d to run Linux as a web server serving up data from the OS/400 LPAR. I think that would be a great way to intruduce Linux in this organization. Too bad I can’t use BSD instead. Oh well, life can’t be perfect. I know, I know. I need to keep an open mind.
Anyway, can someone fill in the gaps for me and just sum up what the whole Fedora movement really is and how it can apply to my organization (an IBM shop with and iSeries model 810 running OS/400).
What’s special about Fedora ? I like to look at the companies strategies and to try to see what will happen next (and I’m usually wrong 😉
Let’s do a comparative of the 4 biggest linux distro (I will be flamed that 😉
– Mandrake has a community of developpers (Cooker), and his professionals (ie. people working full time on Mandrake, and paid for that)
– SuSE has his professionals, but no big community as far as I know (Although it’s very popular here in Germany)
– Debian is a _HUGE_ community of developpers, but they are not backed by professionals. As a result, it has great features, allow advanced users to buy their ultimate distro, and has a lot of project build on debian for a specific purpose (lindows, xandros, agnula, debianedu). Debian doesn’t work well “out of the box” and becomes a meta-distribution
– Now Redhat who was in the situation of SuSE (Redhat has a _lot_ of qualified professionals) and becomes with Fedora a community of developers. Redhat follows the way of Mandrke in a sense. I think it’s an important move for the future of Linux
> but wait isn’t this going to be an Enterprise product?
no, thats the point, fedora is gonna be the community/free of cost project and redhat is gonna be the enterprise product.
Fedora is a free, Red Hat-based, community-supported home desktop OS that will incorporate all the bleeding edge technologies first, before they make it into Red Hat, which is now focused entirely on the enterprise, meaning it won’t be bleeding edge like Fedora, it won’t be entirely opensource (well, the download edition might be if they still offer it), and it won’t be free-beer.
This way is the best of both worlds. RH users can still download their fav OS free of charge while RH doesn’t lose a bucket of money and still be able to provide an enterprise solution.
> Sure I’ve seen screenshots and yeah it looks nice, but wait
> isn’t this going to be an Enterprise product?
No.. the enterprise project is RedHat Enterprise Linux 3.
> Usually, enterprise products mean server products, right?
Corporate desktop if i’m not mistaken. Server too, I guess.
It has more frequent releases and it cutting edge features to help push Linux as a desktop. Examples: Gnome 2.4, OpenOffice 1.1, AbiWord 2.0, etc.
RedHat decided to split its Linux products into two separate entities: RedHat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and Fedora Linux.
RHEL comes in three flavors, WS (Workstaion, $179), ES (Enterprise Server, $699), and AS (Advanced Server, >$1000). This is roughly comparable to split between Windows 2000 Professional (or Win XP Pro), Windows 2000 Server (or Win 2003 Server) and Windows 2000 Datacenter. New releases happen every 12-18 months with 5 years of dedicated support on each release. Also, quarterly feature updates will be available between releases. This is now what is “RedHat Linux”. ISV and other software vendors will be encouraged (and they’ll probably be very happy to do so) to certify their software on the RHEL offerings. Also, all three flavors of RHEL will be based on the same codebase to make certification and updating easier for end users. Finally, all three versions come with additional support, with AS offering 24/7 phone support.
Important note: the binary versions of these products, while mostly FOSS with some proprietary stuff, are not offered for free. I believe RedHat considers the binary software “proprietary to RedHat”, which is not really too big an issue. Also, the above prices are per machine (I don’t think its per CPU) and you cannot enroll multiple machines under a single support contract with those offerings. If you have a lot of machines, they may have other deals, but you’ll have to ask them. Finally, the RHEL products are available for several architectures, IA32, Alpha, Itanium, AMD64, and some IBM servers (S/390 for sure) are all supported, but I forget the exact list.
The source files for all redistributable (GPL/FOSS/or just RedHat provided) components is available as per GPL, et al. license. I believe the errata and usual updates will also be available for free as usual. As noted above, if you want it compiled, RedHat won’t do it for you unless you buy it. Though, nothing really stops someone else from making a distro from these sources. That may be a source of business for someone, but you will *NOT* get RedHat support for such a product.
Now, Fedora is a completely different thing. Think of it as RedHat-supported, Debian-alike project. Its not a product. Its not something RedHat will sell. Oh, there *WILL NOT BE* a RedHat Linux 10. Instead, RedHat opened up their codes and some resources to other developers and distro “editors” and said “have fun”. They still own the house, but a lot more people will be able to paint the walls. So, Fedora is now the “free binary downloadable” Linux offering from RedHat. I believe there will be a stable release every 6 months or so. Also, the Fedora Legacy project is trying to support previous versions of RedHat Linux (probably 7.0-9 or at least 7.3,8.0,9).
Now, if you have an IBM iSeries, go for the RHEL product. Sure, you have to pay for it, but it will work and it will have support. Also, your software vendors will have an easier time certifying their software.
If you want stable software against which other vendors will certify their software and want support: purchase RHEL.
If you don’t care about support, but want approximately the same benefits as purchased RHEL for much less: compile or pay someone to compile RHEL sources.
If you want bleeding-edge, community supported, company-backed, rapidly-released, similar-to-the-old-RedHat-Linux-product: use Fedora.
If you hate Linux or RedHat: that’s your problem, and is beyond the scope of this post (should make it an article)
Hope that helps.
Is Fedora a new project that Redhat created or was it an ongoing Linux distro/project that Redhat merged with?
I don’t see what RedHat is trying to accomplish. All they are going to end up doing is to decrease the value of the Red Hat brand name and increase the value of the Fedora brand name. Companies will just switch over to Fedora from RedHat since RedHat won’t really be able to distinguish its RedHat product branded names. And companies won’t care about support either. They didn’t care when their product was labelled RedHat 7.1, 7.2, 7.3, 8.0, 9, and they won’t care when it is labelled Fedora. Thanks to the GPL, Linux will always be free as in beer.
How/why do you think Fedora will avoid the ‘never ending release’ that debian is? By that I mean fedora will never be stable. New users will not be able to install and run it. So the first thing that will happen is people will start to steer away from fedora.
I have looked at all the betas of fedora and they have all the earmarks of becoming just a hobby OS for tinkers.(I actually think this is what RH wanted – so they can sell their more expensive ES)
Looks like the days of the free lunch are for the most part over.
Something of both. RedHat decided some months ago to open their previous distro into a “community-based” project. However, I believe there was also an independent Fedora project with similar goals and started in a similar time-frame. Well, RedHat and the Fedora project saw each other and decided to combine their resources into one community project. So now we have the RedHat-backed, community-based Fedora Project. I hope that clears it up a bit more. I don’t know exact dates, but all of this has happened within the last 6 months or so.
“Debian is a _HUGE_ community of developpers, but they are not backed by professionals.”
Sure they are.
HP and Sun, for example, are listed as official Debian Partners (http://www.debian.org/partners/). In addition, many of the organisations using Debian (http://www.debian.org/users/) contribute financially to the project and/or take an active interest in its development, as do all the Debian-based distributions (e.g. Xandros, Libranet, Knoppix, Skolelinux…) Also, a great number of the Debian developers are software developers and/or sysadmins in their day jobs, many of whom make use of and actively promote Debian in their workplaces. Finally, there are a fair few individuals/businesses who offer Debian consultancy and support (http://www.debian.org/consultants/).
I also don’t quite understand the importance you place in RedHat’s backing. Why is Fedora better than Debian on account of this? Granted, RedHat have provided a great amount of infrastructure (hardware and bandwidth) and expertise (helping refine the packaging policy and procedures etc) to Fedora, but then Debian already covered this ground long ago. Over the course of the 10 years they’ve been around, their procedures, methodology and policy have evolved into their present forms, and their hardware and bandwidth are and have always been funded by donations. I don’t see how Debian’s at any disadvantage over Fedora simply on account of RedHat footing the bills and presiding over the steering committee.
so fedora is not able for the installation on server ?
and who has already computer with redhat installed what must make?
HP and SUN? Erm…
Yeah, I would really love to see how much they really contribute to Debian, or if it’s just a few lines of code here and there, and Debian placing them in “partners” for PR purposes.
And hey… Fedora is probably better than Debian in this aspect because a.) RH is the most popular Linux company. b.) RH is the most popular distro.
But you’re right… I’m not gonna slap Debian down… Both have their share of services and etc… But I would think RedHat is more Enterprise ready than Debian.
First, the term “hobby OS” is meaningless on its own and unnecessarily derogatory in tone. Why even worry about it? Simply adopt a pragmatic approach: if the distribution fulfills all of your requirements and is still likely to be around tomorrow, feel free to make use of it. Those are far better criteria on which to base a judgement.
It’s too early to be able to predict what Fedora will evolve into. However, since there hasn’t yet been a release, I would say that it’s definitely not suitable for any kind of production or real-world use at this time. For now, your choices are to either use Debian Stable or purchase RedHat Enterprise.
If so, then Redhat does not mind losing them because they want to make money. If they move to Fedora, then so be it. If Redhat as much as smells an opening in terms of home desktop computing and so on, you can bet they will be right there in a flash.
“HP and SUN? Erm…
Yeah, I would really love to see how much they really contribute to Debian, or if it’s just a few lines of code here and there, and Debian placing them in “partners” for PR purposes.”
Read all about the Partners program for yourself at http://www.debian.org/partners/partners . In short: all those displayed on the Partners page are listed at their own behest.
“But I would think RedHat is more Enterprise ready than Debian.”
Based on what? It’d be helpful if you actually provided your reasoning, assuming you actually have any beyond “because it’s RedHat”.
In any case, we’re making a comparison between Fedora and Debian here. Debian Stable is unquestionably the better choice for the enterprise out of those two.
And, since you brought it up: it also compares very favourably (IMO) against RedHat’s Enterprise product. The packaging quality is still far superior (http://www.debian.org/doc/debian-policy/) and there’s a much wider choice of software on offer (http://packages.debian.org). The one sticking point is in obtaining commercial support. This isn’t quite as straightforward as it is for RedHat (where support comes bundled with the distribution) but nonetheless is available through third parties for those who are interested (http://www.debian.org/consultants/). There are also a great many corporations that support their systems through in-house expertise and therefore don’t need or want a bundled support contract, for whom Debian is an ideal choice.
my choice is for RedHat Enterprise because i need
a stable linux OS and not last release of fedora with huge
of bugs (i presume ).
i think however that fedora bound together to a system of upgrade which RHN is not badly.
“If so, then Redhat does not mind losing them because they want to make money. If they move to Fedora, then so be it.”
Actually, by opening up the RedHat consumer distribution via Fedora, RedHat is *keeping* their customers. Had they not done this, all those users would have been forced to switch to a different (and thus, in RedHat’s eyes, competing) distribution. Also, abandoning them would have generated intense bad feeling which RedHat can’t afford, since it prides itself on its close relationship with the Open Source community.
“If Redhat as much as smells an opening in terms of home desktop computing and so on, you can bet they will be right there in a flash.”
How would they go about doing this? They would have to go head-to-head with Fedora to do so. Quite apart from how terribly hypocritical this would seem after their backing the project, it would be very hard for them to differentiate their product. The only way I could think of would be to incorporate closed-source components to prevent the Fedora community copying their improvements wholesale into Fedora Core, which would be a terrible breach of ethics.
I wast just trying to charactize the developpements model of the major linux distro. Redhat, much like Mandrake, makes a move to an open development, on top of which they can sell their RHEL. I’m happy with this evolution.
It was not an attemps to bash Debian, and by the way :
~/Video$ cat /etc/debian_version
“It was not an attemps to bash Debian,”
Hehe, okay. 🙂 I never said it was. I was simply expressing my disagreement over what you said about Debian not being supported by professionals.
I’m by no means a Debian zealot (I can discuss its weaknesses as well as its strengths), but I do like to interject when people make what I consider to be incorrect statements regarding the project, as I hope others would do for me if they thought I was blowing smoke.
What’s so special?
Well, if you’re a RedHat (read: “Red Hat Linux Project”) user, you can pretty much think of it as a “name change.” (Yes, that’s an oversimplification, but this issue is obviously confusing a lot of people.)
The best analogy and answer to this question is given in the article:
Think of Fedora Core as you do OpenOffice.org
OpenOffice.org is a community-based project, which results in some great (and $free$) development of the core product.
Sun, the owners of the StarOffice code that was then open-sourced, then takes the best development code from OpenOffice.org, adds their own toppings and delivers “a more polished product*.”
The upshot of this concept is that Sun’s costs are kept low, whilst development, activity and emotional attachment is kept high. They can then pass on these savings in a lower-priced office package.
The RedHat Linux Project was at a state similar to StarOffice 5. It was a free offering and lots of people loved it. (Lots of people hated it too – I’m referring to StarOffice andRedHat here!)
But it doesn’t really give you a return on investment unless people wanted to shell out for a pretty box, CD and manual.
So, The RedHat Linux Project has “merged” or given support to the Fedora project, which they are referring to “Fedora Core.” The Fedora community then keeps activity and development high, to which RedHat can “add their own toppings and sell a more polished product” in the same scenario as Sun selling StarOffice.
Again, it does not mean that Fedora Core will be inferior, buggy or amateur software, just like OpenOffice.org doesn’t have to be considered buggy, inferior or amateur.
People that want the features will pay for an upgrade. Those that don’t will stay with OpenOffice.org or Fedora Core, as the case may be.
I, for one, commend both Sun and RedHat for these initiatives. It makes great economic sense for a company that wants to support the Open Source community, but still wants to exist as a for-profit company.
[i]* This is the perception that is given to end users. Everyone has their own opinion as to whether it is true or not. OpenOffice.org provides many people with more-than-enough functionality that they never have to consider buying StarOffice. Others need StarOffice and buy the “bigger brother.”
…and this could change with fedora
– it’s open for new developers and packages
– it supports external yum and apt repositories
lots of packages could be integrated into fedora very easily, for example the packages from freshrpms and planet ccrma.
I guess I’m not going to use Redhat anymore 🙁 I switched to Linux not to spend money on an OS. I decided to use RH because I liked the fact that a huge company was supporting the project. Now, who leads Fedora’s direction?
Also, which is the motivation of open source developers to make soft for RedHat? Do they have to get a license to test their programs? Wow…
Fedora looks like a hobby OS not as good as the official RH. I don’t feel comfortable running it.
What other free-as-in-beer distros d’ya recommend? Mandrake?
Redhat has always stated that it was concentrating on the enterprise. So I fail to see why anyone should be shocked that this fact was stated “bluntly”. Would it be better if he were to hint around it?
Now, who leads Fedora’s direction?
Red Hat. Please read the project page…
Also, which is the motivation of open source developers to make soft for RedHat?
You don’t make software for Red Hat, you package it for Red Hat. The motivation for this would be to get your software used by more people (who don’t need to search for your software and download it from the net).
Developers could also help with the general development of Fedora if they want to. The motivation for this would be to participate in creating a kickass open source operating system, waht else?
Do they have to get a license to test their programs?
Obviously not! You don’t need (and never needed) RHEL if you aren’t an enterprise. Fedora is the Red Hat Linux for private users.
Fedora looks like a hobby OS not as good as the official RH.
Great, I didn’t even know Fedora 1.0 was out yet… It is certainly not a project goal of Fedora to be a crap OS. Let’s just wait and see…
uh, most zealots of any kind can discuss their badge of honor’s weakness.
that’s one way to SPOT a zealot. they know their weak points better then anyone else.
cause zealots LIKE to debate that their way is the right way.
hence they have heard/read/seen all the possible arguments/detractions of the object of their zealotry.
so by saying “i’m by no means of zealot” cause you can tell us the weaknesses…is a good sign your a zealot.
One of the reasons I think Red hat did this is to have a legal recognizable brand for “cheap bytes” CDs as well as “free beer” downloads. So not all Fedora use is going to be “free beer”. Particularly not so for those of us without broadband. ;c)