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By | Gavin Clarke 14th February 2008 13:05

Red Hat talks up JBoss middleware for enterprise

Paid beats free

Tough talking is a way of life in the airline business, a sector over-stuffed with suppliers teetering on the brink of extinction, and with a reputation for costly and poor service.

Two months after plucking new chief executive James Whitehurst - a man with a self-confessed lack of direct involvement in open source software but who is known for his operational experience - from struggling Delta Airlines, Red Hat is now talking big.

Whitehurst's vice president in charge of Red Hat's JBoss middleware Craig Muzilla, said Red Hat is going to undercut giants IBM, Oracle and Microsoft in the saturated and expensive middleware sector during the next seven years, using the full JBoss stack.

Muzilla has predicted JBoss middleware will become a major part of 50 per cent of all enterprise deployments by 2015. "We believe it's an achievable, realistic goal," Muzilla said opening JBoss World in Orlando, Florida.

A large part of JBoss' success is directly down to adoption of its free, open-source application server by developers, freeing them from the burdens of paid licenses and closed code in new projects. Red Hat believes it can achieve broader deployment of JBoss middleware by providing support resources for end users, ISVs, SIs and consultants.

Whitehurst reportedly said JBoss has a "huge opportunity" to convert JBoss' business users from the free, community based versions of its software to the paid versions. Ah, that old thing: opportunity. It's the conversion of that "huge opportunity" into actual results that's the rub.

"The enterprise version is much easier for them to use because it uses stable code that doesn't constantly change compared to the community based version," Whitehurst said.

To help conversions, Red Hat has announced a resource acceleration center that is designed to round up best practices, services and expertise on performance, application migration, interoperability and certification to ease deployment of JBoss middleware

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