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Sun shines on Linux too!

How does Sun perceive Linux? As competition or does Linux compliment Sun?

We really think Linux is a good thing. The combination of Linux and the Internet have changed things completely. Linux and the Internet fill a whole new growth and space of Unix. From a user's perspective Linux is Unix, just as BSD is Unix and we basically grew up on BSD.

We are working on compatibility environments for Solaris and Linux. This is to make sure there is a common user experience for the end-user and the developer. The user gets one interface whether he is in Linux or in Solaris. We have done this because we hear that from people every day. Linux and Solaris are quite compatible today and we are going to provide even more consistency by providing layers of API compatibility into Solaris.

What contribution is Sun making towards Linux and Open Source?

Herb Hinstorff picSun is truly embracing open source. We are not just publishing code. What we are really doing is truly turning these projects into Open Source projects. We have worked with various Linux vendors such as Red Hat, Mandrake and SuSE to support Linux on our platform.

We are doing everything to help Linux grow while keeping things as consistent as possible. If a user learns on a Linux system, he should be able to work on Solaris too. We are working on a whole range of projects that will help him get started on Solaris.

The whole nature of Open Source takes us back to our roots. We are working with the Internationalization part of the Linux and organizations like the University of Michigan. We are contributing code back to Linux. We have contributed code to NFS (Network File System) version 4.0. We have also opened up the Internationalization framework in Solaris and are contributing to the X consortium. This helps Linux grow and unifies the whole Unix market. We are working towards consistency of applications between Solaris and Linux. We are actually helping the Linux programmers who ported Linux to SPARC. We were also the founding members of the Open Source Developer Network (OSDN).

Why doesn't Sun pre-install Linux on its computers?

In terms of shipping Linux with our systems, we don't even ship Solaris. Solaris isn't pre-loaded on most systems and is an option. A lot of effort is being to made to get Linux running on Sun's product line. In term of ordering Linux for Sun, you can order Red Hat Linux for Sun. Instructions for dual booting Linux and Solaris are available on our Web site. We don't have users asking for Linux on Sparc.