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Thu 1 Mar 2007 01:20 PM

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IBM holds off on Oracle support

Industry titan IBM will not guarantee to customers that its programs will work on Oracle's version of the Red Hat Linux operating system, it said last week.

Industry titan IBM will not guarantee to customers that its programs will work on Oracle's version of the Red Hat Linux operating system, it said last week.

A spokesperson for the company told Reuters that any incompatibility issues with its programs running on the Oracle OS would be down to Oracle to solve.

IBM already provides guarantees that its products will work with Red Hat Linux. While Oracle is claiming that its product is identical and should run any software written for the Red Hat system, IBM is not ready to endorse that claim.

"We are going to wait and see if there is traction in the marketplace," the spokesperson told Reuters. "If clients want it (Oracle), then we will support it."

Software buyers, anxious to ensure that they do not have to change all their programs, rely on certifications from suppliers. Red Hat has over 2,700 such certifications from software makers that their business software packages are compatible with its version of the OS.

IBM's endorsement is particularly important as it is a key business software provider. Its products include some of the most popular large corporate software programs, including the DB2 database, Tivoli management systems, and Websphere middleware.

Oracle CEO and chairman Larry Ellison launched the Oracle Linux variant at Oracle's OpenWorld event last October, having told IT Weekly in an exclusive interview earlier in the year that it was in response to popular demand. However, Oracle declined to comment to Reuters on how many customers have purchased the OS.

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