Intel Partners With Red Hat to Push Linux

Intel and Red Hat on Tuesday announced a global program designed to help customers plan for, accelerate and optimize their deployments of Linux solutions.

The firms said the program will initially focus on developing and disseminating tools for platform virtualization and grid computing.

“The Red Hat-Intel Solution Acceleration Program will give customers real-time access to the critical information, tools and support they need to build and optimize high-value Linux solutions on Intel-based platforms,” said Jon Bork, director of Intel’s Open Source Program Office.

Supporting Advanced Deployments

The Red Hat-Intel Solution Acceleration Program operates online and at hubs in Virginia, India, Germany and 14 satellite locations. The hubs will be equipped with Intel Itanium 2 and Intel Xeon processor-based servers, Intel Pentium 4 processor-based corporate desktops, Intel Centrino mobile technology-based laptops, and Intel-based storage devices, including key preproduction platforms.

All of the centers, which will be located at Red Hat facilities, will be utilized by services and solution experts from Intel and Red Hat, as well as customers and other partners who participate in solutions deployment.

“We’re responding to what customers have told us they really need to support their advanced deployments of Linux and open source,” said Tim Yeaton, executive vice president of Enterprise Solutions at Red Hat. “The programs Intel and Red Hat have selected are aimed at equipping customers with in-depth domain knowledge and providing hard core data to make complex architectural decisions.”

Self-Help Services

Red Hat and Intel will offer a variety of services, including training and knowledge transfer. Customers will have access to advanced training and a knowledge repository of technical white papers, case studies, benchmarks, Web seminars and reference solutions. Customers can also run proof of concepts using the hardware, software and technical support offered at the program centers.

The program will give customers access to information about previously tested or deployed solutions based on Red Hat and Intel technology. Red Hat has begun certifying a number of software solution stacks, and through the program will work with Intel to expand the number of certified solution stacks available and introduce a hardware component into certified solution stacks.

The program will also make available hardware and software for customers to test recently ported RISC and other code, and test operating systems and application compatibility. Red Hat and Intel will work together to define and test hardware and software solutions specifically for the reseller channel and for select vertical market segments.

A Maturing Market

Finally, the program will concentrate on new technology initiatives to ensure that the combination of Red Hat Enterprise Linux on Intel platforms will support the latest trends, such as virtualization and multicore technologies. For example, program centers will be used for pilot projects of Intel Virtualization technology on Fedora Core 5 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5, using the Xen hypervisor.

On the surface, this appears as a co-marketing announcement rather than as a sea change of any sort, according to Interabor Solutions Principal Analyst Dana Gardner. Intel and Red Hat are two companies coming together for the mutual development of their businesses — but the deal speaks to the state of the Linux industry.

“This announcement offers a sense of growing maturity around the Linux community because of the types of companies and types of activities,” Gardner told LinuxInsider. “These are activities that tend to occur within a maturing and robust market. You wouldn’t see this level of investment in something that wasn’t highly visible and highly viable.”

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