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Red Hat announces direction for secure, manageable client computingnews
Our Corporate Bureau
05 May 2004
London / Mumbai: During a press conference in London yesterday, Red Hat, the world''s leading provider, open source solutions to the enterprise announced a long-term client strategy.

Matthew Szulik, Red Hat chairman and ceo, discussed with an audience of press, analysts and partners how Red Hat''s client strategy was forged from the need for choice in the technology industry to drive innovation and forward thinking. "Open source is now causing the enterprise to question traditional models of software and software availability. This is an architectural alternative that extends from devices, through the network, and into the data centre deployable and flexible without concern of lock-in."

Red Hat''s strategy will bring the security, manageability and reliability of open source to the client environment. Existing Red Hat customers will benefit from a consistent platform for both client and server applications and new customers will have the opportunity to pilot and integrate flexible open source alternatives. The client strategy is an extension of open source architecture designed to enable open source in the enterprise by providing breadth and depth of open source and partner-certified solutions.

"Several industry trends are coming together which are likely to change how organisations deploy information technology on the desktop," said Dan Kusnetzky, IDC''s vp of system software research. "Strategies to lower costs while still providing a well managed, secure platform are increasingly important. This announcement makes it clear that Red Hat understands these emerging requirements and has a strategy to provide the needed products and services."

In March, 2004 Red Hat announced a partnership with Wind River to jointly pursue the device market, with a standard open source platform. This is now followed with the first market deliverable of the client strategy; the delivery of the Red Hat Desktop.

Javed Tapia, director Red Hat India said "The launch of Red Hat Desktop spells Red Hat''s commitment to the client environment. We have ensured that Red Hat Desktop provides a complete user experience with E-mai, Web Browsing, Instant Messaging, Office suite, Imaging and Multimedia PLUS installation support and a year of upgrades and updates." With Red Hat Desktop, Red Hat plans to address the growing demand for PCs in India. He added " In India, PC manufacturers have already started offering Linux OS with their products. This has fueled the demand for PCs and laptops as prices have plummeted. In fact India is a step ahead of the rest of the world when it comes to adoption of Linux on the desktop. Governments, corporates and even the education segment have already started using Linux on the desktop."

The Red Hat Desktop is a secure, manageable solution for the enterprise and is targeted at Government, Academic and Enterprise IT organisations. The Red Hat Desktop is a productive environment that features mature open source office applications including an e-mail client, browser and office suite. Organisations seeking a single client for developers who require both development and office productivity solutions are ideal pilot sites.

LVM, one of Germany''s largest insurance companies, is one of the heavier users of Linux on the desktop today with more than 8,400 previously in-house developed Linux desktops deployed in their organisation. "We are considering the Red Hat Desktop solution because of the open source merits of security, manageability and cost-effectiveness," said Matthias Strelow, technical team leader at LVM.

The Red Hat Desktop will be made available in configurations which include either Red Hat Network Proxy or Satellite Servers. A Proxy or Satellite Server deployment enables several clients to be deployed and managed Simultaneously and greatly simplifies the ongoing security and management of systems.

Future enhancements to Red Hat''s desktop strategy will focus on productivity and interoperability with the support of key industry partners. Partners such as VMWare, Real, Macromedia, Adobe and Citrix are working to certify applications to enable great cross-functionality with other technologies.

"VMware desktop solutions have provided millions of technical professionals with the ability to develop and test Linux-based applications with minimal effort," said Michael Mullany, vp of marketing at VMware. "As organisations turn to the security and manageability of Linux on the desktop, we look forward to delivering innovative capabilities to Red Hat Desktop solutions."

In parallel, Red Hat will continue work with Wind River to address thin client computing and the device marketplace. By building thin clients and devices based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux, customers will have access to flexible open source technology for a broader range of solutions, from single-purpose call center clients to handhelds. For the first time, developers will be able to standardise device software development across the enterprise. "The enterprise today requires a truly collaborative infrastructure that enables next-generation devices to exchange data with enterprise computers running highly available applications," said Brad Murdoch, vice president of strategic alliances for Wind River. "In order to connect the device to the enterprise efficiently, companies must optimise device software development. With Wind River and Red Hat, companies have the two industry leading standards in device software that will enable device to server connectivity better, faster at a lower cost and more reliably."

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Red Hat announces direction for secure, manageable client computing