On the Desktop
Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Linux History page.
Five years ago: Pacific HiTech released "Turbo Linux 96: Slackware Edition."
Three years ago (September 3, 1998 LWN): The world was trying to figure out what to make of Corel's jump into Linux.
"I expect Corel to making tens of millions of dollars in the Linux space within the next 12 months," says Robert Young, president of North Carolina-based Red Hat Software Inc., a leading distributor of Linux software. "It's got some very well known software brands and there is a lot of demand among Linux users for more advanced software," he adds.
Oh well. Three years later, Corel did evidently bring in $2 million by selling its Linux operation...
Salon Magazine, meanwhile, talked with Richard Stallman:
Never mind that Stallman started the free software movement, or that thousands of lines of code that he personally authored are an integral part of what most people today call "Linux." To the new generation, Stallman is an embarrassment and a hindrance who must, at all costs, be trundled into a back room before he scares off the investors.
The Debian Project released "Hamm-JP", its first shot at a Japanese version of its distribution.
Caldera split into two companies: Caldera Systems and a thing called Caldera Thin Clients, which handled the DR-DOS/embedded systems business. Caldera Thin Clients would eventually rename itself Lineo. Caldera Systems later became Caldera International (as it merged in parts of the former SCO).
But the big news, of course, was that LWN adopted a new, multi-page format, leaving behind the "one big page" except for the hard core that refused to do without it....
Two years ago (September 2, 1999 LWN): Red Hat parted ways with a company called LASER5, which had been doing all of Red Hat's localization work in Japan. LASER5 stated its intent to go into the business on its own and dominate the Japanese Linux market. Two years later the company is still around and even has a 7.1 release available, but is not quite the market force it had hoped to be.
Sun's purchase of StarDivision was made official. Sun also announced plans to release StarOffice under the Sun Community Source License, which did not raise a great deal of enthusiasm. Sun's plans also included something called "StarPortal", which never went much of anywhere.
Linux stocks were defined by some as "exuberant", but both Applix and Corel were down, supposedly because of Sun's acquisition of StarOffice.
Sun Microsystems' adoption of a new office software suite might be a good thing for Linux users, but it hasn't been so good for the makers of competing products.
It certainly didn't help.
Sm@rt Reseller asked Is Linux falling apart? and answered "No", in a surprising change from the usual 'Linux will fragment' articles.
Don't get me wrong; there will be nasty wars between the Linux vendors. With money talking, the warm 'we brave band of brothers' feeling of the early days of Linux is going to erode. But, the cold legal facts of Linux's foundations will keep Linux from ever shattering into incompatible versions that made Unix application reselling such a pain in the neck.
Linux still seems in no danger of fragmenting. Those "nasty wars" haven't broken out yet, either.
One year ago (August 31, 2000 LWN): IBM announced the release of the Andrew Filesystem (AFS) this week. The AFS was released under the IBM Public License, which, according to the FSF's license list, was not compatible with the GPL.
The Galeon web browser, then at version 0.7.3, made a big splash. It was reviewed on LWN's front page and in this LinuxToday article. LWN proclaimed Galeon about 90% there with a about 90% left to go. Today's Galeon is at version 0.12 as of August 18, 2001, and is heavily used by some LWN staff.
The Open Source Development Lab was created. Well the idea and a the mission statement were introduced, anyway, along with several initial sponsors.
The companies were vague on details, like the size of the lab, how much it would cost and how much the project's backers would invest. The backers said the lab would be run by an independent director who would essentially choose which projects would be emphasized and which software would be tested, although they suggested that the laboratories would be accessible to Linux developers at large.
Since then they have created the actual computing lab in Portland, Ore. and added some new sponsors. There now are proposed projects, active projects and even one completed project. Not bad for its first year.
Corel talked about its Linux plans:
Also next year, we intend to release a server edition of Corel LINUX OS, followed by an enterprise edition. The enterprise edition will allow small to medium-sized enterprises to deploy Linux, Windows and UNIX-based applications throughout their organizations with ease.
Section Editor: Rebecca Sobol.
August 30, 2001