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Reuters/Yahoo!/The Register: AOL in Deal with Red Hat to use Linux

Mar 12, 2002, 07:16 (21 Talkback[s])

[ Thanks to certron for this link. ]

"AOL Time Warner has hired software firm Red Hat Inc to convert some of its computer systems to the open-source Linux (news - web sites) operating system, according to sources close to talks between the two companies.

Terms of the deal were not immediately available and could simply involve support services for some portion of AOL's behind-the-scenes computer systems.

Red Hat and AOL both declined to comment. Earlier this year, AOL Time Warner quashed rumors that it was in talks to buy Red Hat."

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[ Thanks to Seamus O'Tux for this link ]

"Sources inside AOL and Red Hat say AOL is making a major internal switch to Linux, and the long-rumored AOL default browser switch from Microsoft's Internet Explorer to Mozilla -- or at least Mozilla's Gecko rendering engine -- is well under way, but AOL will probably not offer an AOL client for Linux in the forseeable future.

According to several Red Hat and AOL employees who spoke to NewsForge but asked us not to use their names, recent negotiations between AOL and Red Hat that led to rumors about AOL considering a Red Hat acquisition were really negotiations for support contracts that will help AOL use Linux more effectively.

AOL is switching to Linux for the same reason most large companies make the change: to save money. Thousands of AOL servers are already 100% Linux, and more are switching over every day. AOL number-crunchers figure they can replace an $80,000 box running proprietary UNIX with two $5,000 Linux boxes and get a 50% increase in performance in addition to the cost savings. 'Don't tell our competitors,' one of our AOL contacts says. 'Let them keep buying expensive crap.'"

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