Red Hat joins forces with CentOS to boost open source innovation

By on January 9, 2014, 8:30 AM
linux, red hat, open source, centos

Red Hat announced Tuesday that the company is joining forces with CentOS to develop a "new CentOS" in a bid to speed open source innovation. Several core members of the CentOS team will join the Red Hat payroll, but will continue working on CentOS as their primary job function, according to an announcement on the CentOS mailing list.

Red Hat's business is centered around its popular operating system Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL). The company makes over a billion dollars a year by charging a premium for all software and support services it provides with its enterprise OS.

But several components, including the Linux kernel, are subject to the GNU Public License, which requires any derivative work to be published under the same license. For this reason Red Hat publishes all its derivative code online.

A team of developers took this code and gave birth to CentOS, which is essentially a free RHEL clone with Red Hat branding and other intellectual property removed. The Linux distribution caters to those who can live without official support.

This move from the North American enterprise Linux vendor will benefit both organizations. A better relationship with Red Hat along with financial and infrastructure support will definitely be helpful for CentOS. Likewise, it would be easy for existing CentOS users to become paying Red Hat customers if they ever desire support.

In general, CentOS users need not worry as their favorite Linux distro isn't going anywhere. Also, the partnership will not affect Fedora, a community-based Linux distribution maintained by Red Hat.




User Comments: 12

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cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

It is not difficult to see value for Red Hat in wanting CentOS. I didn't know Red Hat was an OS with a price tag. CentOS will allow a free test drive, for anyone potentially in the market for Red Hat.

Guest said:

"But several components, including the Linux kernel, are subject to the GNU Public License, which requires any derivative work to be published under the same license. For this reason Red Hat publishes all its derivative code online."

Nonsense commentary from a clueless author. You cannot step out of your limited worldview to even imagine for a split second that the reason Red Hat publishes source code freely is *NOT* because they are legally obligated to do so. They choose to - it's that simple. They truly believe in an open source development model being superior to all else for the sake of innovation, security, competition, and business. If they didn't believe in it, they would have dumped all GNU Public License code long ago and started out fresh on a path to becoming a decrepit old-fashioned software company like many others.

EClyde EClyde said:

How many years of "Open Source Innovation" have we had with linux? Where has it got them? Bottom of the heap, that's where. Too many innovators innovating their own way and going nowhere.

1 person liked this | cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

@EClyde that is why I'm keeping my eye on Steam OS. I'm hoping it will be different with Valve.

ArthurZ ArthurZ said:

I guess this is a logical move now right before Windows XP rolls off the general support.

Guest said:

Open source and innovation don't belong together in one sentence. It's proprietary that spur innovation, not open source.

veLa veLa said:

I tried out a couple of Linux distros on an ancient computer I had running a few years back. I guess a simple way to put it was that I just couldn't seem to get why Linux is so great.

Fifth Blade said:

How many years of "Open Source Innovation" have we had with linux? Where has it got them? Bottom of the heap, that's where. Too many innovators innovating their own way and going nowhere.

You can't be serious? They won every market outside of the desktop. From watches and microwaves to phones to supercomputers.

Guest said:

While, I am sure the motivation to use open source is personal 'choice' to them, the author is still technically correct. Anything published with Torvalds kernel, however modified, has to be publised under the same terms. read the gnu. In order for them to build a close source OS they would have to build it from the ground up with original coding.

Railman said:

I tried out a couple of Linux distros on an ancient computer I had running a few years back. I guess a simple way to put it was that I just couldn't seem to get why Linux is so great.
I suppose it depends on what you are expecting. I was impressed with Debian as it did run much faster than XP. I also found it very enjoyable using the extensive text command function.

If you want a system that works out of the box then go for MS or OSX.

Guest said:

@Railman: MS or OS X? Really? What about Linux Mint, the perfect XP substitute!? Or even Ubuntu for some?

Guest said:

"While, I am sure the motivation to use open source is personal 'choice' to them, the author is still technically correct. Anything published with Torvalds kernel, however modified, has to be publised under the same terms."

You cannot cure clueless with more clueless. There is no "technically correct" about it. The kernel licensing affects only that, the kernel. Oracle Linux uses the same kernel, but is Oracle's database Open? No, it's not. Many components of Apple's OSes are Open, but is Apple more Open than Red Hat? Laughably not.

"read the gnu."

If you can't even be bothered to differentiate between GNU and the license, the GPL, why bother to post at all?

"In order for them to build a close source OS they would have to build it from the ground up with original coding."

Very incorrect. There is much code under other licenses out there, BSD for starters. But they choose Linux and GPL instead. It's just that simple. All I ask is that the clueless army stop misrepresenting what is Red Hat.

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