Turbolinux now eyes lucrative enterprise market

CIOL Bureau
New Update

Adam Pasick


NEW YORK: Turbolinux, the privately held firm that rose to prominence selling

the increasingly popular Linux operating system, is changing its strategy to

make a go at the lucrative enterprise software market. The company is set to

announce the launch on Tuesday of its PowerCockpit software that helps companies

configure complex banks of computers running different types of software.

The launch of PowerCockpit is a key step in Turbolinux's transition from a

Linux distributor to a more traditional software firm, according to chief

executive Ly-Huong Pham, as the once-hot Linux sector cools off and matures.

"A development model is not a business model. Let's not confuse the

two," she said.

Linux is an open-source operating system, meaning its inner workings are

freely accessible and the software itself is available at little or no cost, in

contrast to Microsoft Corp.'s proprietary, closely guarded Windows. Turbolinux,

like competitor Red Hat Inc., is now focused on selling Linux-friendly software

and services in addition to the operating system itself.


Instead of relying solely on sales of Linux distributions, which, under

Linux's license, can legally be copied or downloaded for free, the companies are

aiming at the lucrative enterprise software market. "A year ago our sales

and marketing was focused on retail, and now it's totally enterprise," Pham


PowerCockpit, along with a recently launched Turbolinux program called

EnFuzion that groups multiple workstations into a virtual supercomputer, run on

all distributions of Linux, not just Turbolinux's own, the company said.

"It's the last component of our overall strategy we've been executing in

the past year," Pham said.

It has been a tumultuous 12 months for Turbolinux, with the company laying

off staff and scrapping both an initial public offering and a merger with Linux

service firm Linuxcare as the technology bubble burst. Pham said the company had

no plans to raise additional funding and had enough cash for the firm to reach

profitability, but declined to say when Turbolinux would make it to the black.

(C) Reuters Limited 2001.