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AOL to buy Redhat
heini




msg:911954
 12:43 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

AOL is negotiating an acquisition of Redhat, reports the Washington Post today [washingtonpost.com].

This could be the breakthrough for Linux fighting the hegemony of Windows on PCs.

the AOL software could be configured to override Windows and
launch a version of Red Hat's Linux operating system, sources said.


 

john316




msg:911955
 1:42 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

That would definitely put Linux on the desktop...I want my new AOL CD!

Brett_Tabke




msg:911956
 1:49 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

Excellent. I like this idea, but lets not get too far out front. Remember what they did with Netscape? ummm, nothing.

But the AOL software could be configured to override Windows and launch a version of Red Hat's Linux operating system, sources said.

Not gonna happen.

alexjc




msg:911957
 2:48 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

And you're sure this is a good thing?

hmmm...

grnidone




msg:911958
 3:58 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

I could see AOL hurting Redhat more than enhancing it: adding lots of gui features that make it as unstable as Winders. We'll see...

heini




msg:911959
 4:08 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

>good thing?
>hurting Redhat

It's questionable if this would be a good thing for Redhat, but it could be great thing for the general awareness and acceptance of Linux.

bird




msg:911960
 4:29 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

>>but it could be great thing for the general awareness and acceptance of Linux.

So we'd be ready to sacrifice Redhat on the altar of mass appeal? ;)

heini




msg:911961
 4:31 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

It's a huge company, up to them to make such a deal.

There's still Debbian...

toolman




msg:911962
 5:09 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

For some reason I just can't get excited about this...maybe if it was IBM buying them....

electro




msg:911963
 5:14 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

Do AOL not suck?

Bigtime?

Is Red Hat not the largest Linux distro?

Air




msg:911964
 7:33 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

>AOL is negotiating an acquisition of Redhat

Personally I hope this doesn't happen, in the long run the acquisition of R.H. by AOL will likely see the demise of Red Hat as a viable WWW server and business server. Many businesses have embraced Linux on the server if not on the desktop, I can't see AOL maintaining a structure and focus that would give business users any comfort in continuing to use it. Further I don't believe AOL has demonstrated any sense of community with the WWW, and would not care if all of the other ISP's disappeared from the face of the earth, who by the way, overwhelmingly use R.H. Linux as their OS.

I am of the opinion that if the various Linux distributions all gradually end up acquired by one big company or another, the impact of Linux will be weakened, AOL may want to punish MS but their core competency is not OSes. If IBM, or HP, or Sun were to acquire distributions it would be to push their expensive hardware while satisfying the "mee too" element of businesses that need to show an awareness and adoption of what is perceived to be cheaper and leading edge technology.

Remember these companies already give away their operating systems, AIX (IBM), HP/UX (HP), SOlaris (Sun), AOL has supplied the entire world with multiple "coasters" with their incessant give away of the latest AOL version. That's not where the money is for these companies.

The way I see it, the acquisition of any Linux distribution by the big boys at this time is not good news. IMO the power of Linux as a competing operating system and more importantly a competing paradigm, lies in the fact that it runs on commodotitized hardware, and that much of the software is free. This threatens both the software and hardware communities and can only mean one thing, Linux is in for the ride of it's life, but maybe a short life.

littleman




msg:911965
 9:40 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

I'm mixed. I don't think aol will disroy Red Hat, the the server business is to good. I think what this is really about is now AOL would distribute it's own OS and put some marketing behind it. AOL has 100 million suscribers that it could push it's AOLinux on. This really would be the end of the effecitive MS monopoly.

If this happens, look at new PCs powered by a dumbed down AOLinux pushed hard.

grnidone




msg:911966
 10:07 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

>maybe if it was IBM buying them....

IBM? IBM can't market their way out of a wet paper bag. Look what happened to OS/2. An operating system ahead of its time, stable and ran all windows and other apps, but died a slow death because nobody but geeks knew about it.

It will be interesting to see what happens.

"You've got Linux..."


Brett_Tabke




msg:911967
 10:48 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

I think they will go straight to the computer manufactures and offer them a bundled deal.

Imagine AOL putting together:
RedHat, Netscape 6, Star Office, a couple cds of GNU programs, a box set of Time Magazine, dvd's "the best of cnn", Business 2.0 stuff, CNN Money/Fortune Finacial utilities, offers of free hardware/software support.

And imagine Steve Case telling TedWait and Michael Dell that they can have it for free and custom tailored to their hardware. They can preinstall it with all the custom icons and logo's they want. Given the new MS licensing agreements with the manufactures, they could do it in a dual boot setup.

That takes the noose off of Dell and Gateway that Bill Gates is holding.

littleman




msg:911968
 11:08 pm on Jan 19, 2002 (gmt 0)

Yeah, that's what I see happening. It's funny though, AOL doesn't need to buy Red Hat to do this. They could just use all RH's software, after all the bulk of it is GNU -- though I guess it makes more sense to own what you push, especially if you are a megacorp.

AOL doesn't always ruin what it touches, winamp and the ODP still have quality.

prowsej




msg:911969
 2:11 am on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

I think that you're missing the point. There's no money in offering a direct competitor to Windows. AOL would lose because they'd be distracted by something that doesn't really matter and they necessairly offer an inferior product. Even Microsoft is moving away from their reliance on Windows as a profit source.

The desktop doesn't matter. Linux, however, is an ideal OS for the embedded space. Do you care that your WebTV uses Linux? No, to use a Microsoft phrase: "it just works."

I can imagine this as a move to compete with Microsoft HomeStation, perhaps. I envision a set-top box or a Tablet PC (if AOL has been swept up by the hype). Hopefully they're not so stupid as to try to fight ysterday's battle - the battle over the desktop OS.

turned off notifications...

(edited by: Brett_Tabke at 1:08 pm (utc) on Jan. 24, 2002)

littleman




msg:911970
 3:57 am on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

All this is speculation. I agree that embedded space *could* be what they have in mind.

>inferior
We'll just let that sit, no need to start an OS holy war.

>profit source

With an OS based on open source development the overhead is substantially lower than proprietary software. They could cut a deal with a major PC manufacturer where AOLinux is licensed for free and the revenue is generated from AOL subscriptions. Such a move will cut MS completely out of the loop, and foster loyalty of Joe_I_like_to_surf_and_check_my_email_a_lot_and_that_is_what_computers_are_good_for.

john316




msg:911971
 4:17 am on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

>"AOLinux is licensed for free and the revenue is generated from AOL subscriptions"<

Exactly what M$ is trying to accomplish.

>"Joe_I_like_to_surf_and_check_my_email_a_lot_and_that_is_what_computers_are_good_for. "<

Gotta love them Joes...I wouldn't be here if it weren't for them.

BTW, those Joes could give a flying pumpkin pie about what OS they are using, they just want to get online. And they would never "download the most recent distro and compile the neccesary binaries"..they like to use *installers* i.e. click here to make this thing work.

electro




msg:911972
 5:37 am on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

err, I think I am one of those joe's :-)

I just got myself Red Hat this New Year, set it up as an alternitive OS on my computers. It installs fine (ok, I had to mess around with partitions on one computer), but it still seems a pain to get onto the internet. Why do I have to open a dialer, type in my root password, click ok, THEN open a browser? And when the most advanced browser on board is Netscape 4.7 and the fonts look horrible, I start loosing interest. Ok, so I am still interested in what it can do as a server (which was the reason I got it), but as a desktop it isn't quite doing it for me at the moment. Maybe AOL would make it better for desktop, but I don't like or trust AOL with anything. They may make it better for desktops, but then they will probably mess up the server market.

But what do I know, I'm just a Linux newbie!

littleman




msg:911973
 6:45 am on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

Hi Joe ;)

Netscape 4.7 isn't the latest and greatest browser for Linux.You are right the Netscape fonts look terrible.

You actually have a lot of choices:
Mozilla (the later builds)
Galeon (my favorite, the best browser I've ever used)
Skipstone
Konqueror
Opera
Dillo (super small, no features, super fast)

Brett_Tabke




msg:911974
 8:37 am on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

>There's no money in offering a direct competitor to Windows

Aol must compete with MS on every level to survive this decade. MS is offering a direct competitor to AOL in MSN. AOL is losing market share to MSN. Who is to say that windows 2005 won't REQUIRE you to be an MSN subscriber?

AOL views this as a fight for their life.

ideavirus




msg:911975
 9:42 am on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

hii,

I happen to read in one of the other forums...that lately netscape is being bundling spyware/scumware...??
Any truth in this..??
As we all know..now not many use Netscape at all..?

If that is the case....chances are that AOl will do something really stupid with RH linux...!

Well..i am no Linux expert...
Rather..Just my $0.02

<edit>
Just now got to know that...AOL also owns..winamp...excepting for their icons everywehere when winamp is installed..not much of damage is done..

Check out this Interesting discussion at slashdot...
[slashdot.org...]

</edit>

prowsej




msg:911976
 2:08 pm on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

Brett_Tabke, perhaps you are right (although I'd like to think that Microsoft would never go that far).

Wildcard: if .NET CLI applications really take off, then the "application divide" wouldn't be an issue and Linux would be able to run major Windows programs at the same speed ... or faster. That could be a feather in Linux's cap.

satanclaus




msg:911977
 6:36 pm on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

I think its a great idea. It would be the first AOL cd to ever make it to my CDrom and not to the trash can.(at least not initially)

It will at least make for interesting news. :)

NFFC




msg:911978
 8:35 pm on Jan 20, 2002 (gmt 0)

>cut a deal with a major PC manufacturer where AOLinux is licensed for free and the revenue is generated from AOL subscriptions

I'd be thinking more along the lines of the Sony Playstation model, a subsidised box with the profit in the subscription [software in the case of the PS]. They could cut the PC manufacturer out of the loop, sell direct through electrical/department stores. If you can cut MS, Intel and Dell out of the deal you could almost give the hardware away for free.

bigjohnt




msg:911979
 1:47 am on Jan 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

This should fall right in with the heralded non-PC Internet Only Appliance. Just buy a near-failing PC manufacturer.

AOL:" Okay, okay.. No more free CD's. Just Call 1-800-aol-desktop and we'll send you the AOLinux machine, plug in a phone line, and say goodbye to Bill G."

gethan




msg:911980
 9:27 am on Jan 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

[theregister.co.uk...]

From The Register

In other words, it may be a Linux computer, but a Linux computer that's solely serving a gigantic information and entertainment congolmerate. And that will be enough to make folk nostalgic for Clippy the Paper Clip.

NetGrease




msg:911981
 1:12 pm on Jan 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

Brett_Tabke wrote:
...they can have it for free and custom tailored to their hardware. They can preinstall it with all the custom icons and logo's they want.

I agree, this merger has the potential to be the single-most important decision AOL could ever make - and I think they know it;

littleman wrote:
AOL doesn't always ruin what it touches, winamp and the ODP still have quality.

They certainly don't; I'm just as pleased as everyone else that AOL have left WinAmp and ODP virtually untouched, and more importantly still free. I don't think AOL would be so stupid as to rebrand the entire RedHat franchise lock, stock and barrel for their own purposes. I think they'd build on the strong foundation; still sell the more powerful distributions untouched, but give away an AOL-enhanced version of a super-quick home user workstation/Internet browser OS;

John316 wrote:
And (Joes) would never "download the most recent distro and compile the neccesary binaries"..they like to use *installers* i.e. click here to make this thing work.

Exactly my thinking with the above dedicated workstation/Internet distro; two install options 1)idiot proof, and 2)experienced user. And I don't think the "MS Bundled Browser" monster would raise its ugly head for AOL - the whole damned lot is FREE, and you could always bundle RedHat/AOL with a selection of other browsers on the CD (plus a tonne of other top free apps). I'd definately be interested if AOL gave me an OS on one of their coasters, instead of just a browser. ;)

Brett_Tabke wrote:
Who is to say that Windows 2005 won't REQUIRE you to be an MSN subscriber?

This frightens me to be honest. I've actually severed all my ties to MS now (bar OS), since they decided to create a monster out of the Passport system.

NFFC wrote:
If you can cut MS, Intel and Dell out of the deal you could almost give the hardware away for free.

If they could create a decent system bundle for e.g. under 300, they'd make a killing.

I'm for the merger, but only if AOL respect the RedHat brand, and leave it largely untouched (except for a dedicated Harry Homeowner AOL/RedHat distribution). If they were to do this, they'd certainly get my support as a web developer/technophile.

Macguru




msg:911982
 4:33 pm on Jan 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

Here is another article from CNN today [cnn.com]. Nothing new exept from the point of view.

nowhere




msg:911983
 5:30 pm on Jan 21, 2002 (gmt 0)

AOL still uses Internet Explorer as there default browser, despite the fact they own Netscape. Does anyone honestly believe that Aol will push an AOLinux? AOL?! Have you guys ever actually used AOL? The average user becoming savvy enough to even operate Linux is an AOL nightmare. Heck, the average AOL user learning how to use Windows is an AOL nightmare. There slogan is "with all new AOL 7.0, you get to send email!" "And if you want to go to [ebay.com,...] with all new AOL 7.0, all you have to do is type in ebay in our very special AOKeyword box!" I can see it now, a future AOL commercial with some elderly lady saying "AOLinux is so much easier than Windows. There are so many more buttons, and they are much bigger with pretty rainbow colors, and they don't use hard words."

I'm surprised that some of you Linux guys are happy over this. Is it just Microsoft, or is the way Microsoft conducts business that you guys don't like. Because if it's the latter, I can't see anyone supporting AOL. Talk about a company that uses shameless tactics. They make it almost impossible for any other program to access the Internet (such as Norton,) they change your settings without any permission, they even hack the version of Internet Explorer that you already have replacing the Microsoft logo in the upper right with their own (I still can't understand how the get away with this.) I would take Microsoft over AOL any day of week.

This 43 message thread spans 2 pages: 43 ( [1] 2 > >
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