Monday, July 10, 2006

Oracle and Red-Hat support

Larry Ellison stated during an EMEA-level briefing last month that he is not pleased with the level of support Red-Hat is giving to his end customers. Oracle has been supporting and promoting red-hat heavily. Red-Hat is still the only Linux certified Linux platform for Oracle software. However the love between the companies is getting less after Red-Hat buying JBoss.

The reason for this move, which Oracle executives later declined to provide any real detail on, is that Red Hat isn’t doing a good enough job of providing that support itself, Ellison said.

“Red Hat is too small and does not do a very good job of supporting them [customers],” he said.

“What Red Hat does is every time to fix a bug you have to upgrade the operating system. They don’t support old versions but just bug fixes… That is not proper enterprise support and I think our customers are demanding that and I think you will see that coming from us.”

If Oracle does decide to step in and offer support services for Red Hat customers that could have a massive impact on the Linux supplier, which obviously depends on lucrative support contracts for its revenue.

However, it is also a move that Red Hat will find it difficult to fight against: “The great thing about open source, the most interesting thing to me is the intellectual property,” Ellison told reporters.

“We can just take Red Hat’s intellectual property and make it ours, they just don’t have it.”

This could however prove to be a warning shot across the bows for Red Hat. As Ellison himself admitted, the two firms have been close partners in the past, with Oracle a major promoter of Red Hat’s software.
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