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Linux Format: 5 Minutes with Bob Young

Oct 15, 2000, 18:30 (14 Talkback[s])

[ Thanks to Rob Fenwick for this link. ] "Q: You said that you never intended for Red Hat to become a big fish in a small pond. Do you think that that is the situation now, and if so, does that hinder your company or help it?"

"Young: Let me give you the historic background. When we started off, Slackware had ninety-five percent of the linux market. It was probably a little bit less than that because SuSE had also started off. We have since gone on, to take, according to IDC, anywhere between fifty and seventy percent of the market place. The next biggest vendor might be SuSE with something like eight or nine percent, so on the face of it, if you focus very narrowly on the open source and Linux space, yes we might be a big fish - but we haven't actually converted any of those Slackware users. There are probably more Slackware users in the world today than there were when we started, so from a competitive point of view we've done an incredibly bad job! The reason that we have the market share numbers we do, and for that matter in Germany the reason that SuSE has their numbers, is that we created more Open Source linux users than all of our smaller competitors combined because our focus was never on Linux users. Our focus was on converting Windows and MacOS users and SCO users and Solaris users, and that's what I mean by "growing the pond"."

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