CNET News.com/Meta Group: Commentary: Microsoft co-opts open source approach
Mar 09, 2001, 07:31 (31 Talkback[s])
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"In a major extension of corporate policy, Microsoft has quietly
started a program to provide selected large enterprise customers
with copies of the source code for Windows 2000 (Professional,
Server, Advanced Server and Data Center), Windows XP (released
betas) and all related service packs."
"The standard agreement, which resembles those under which IBM
has traditionally made source code of its operating systems
available, allows customers to consult the Windows source code when
debugging their own applications and to better integrate Windows
with individual corporate environments."
"However, the agreement does not allow customers to modify or
customize the code, and Microsoft anticipates that problems or bugs
that customers may find in Windows will be reported to Microsoft
for resolution through normal support channels...."
"We believe this is an important change in Microsoft policy. It
may be the first step toward a new software development,
distribution and business model similar to open source and designed
to support the Internet-based environment of Microsoft's .Net