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SunRedHatOpen Source Business ModelsOpen SourceMySQL 22 Jan 2008 7:06 AM
Is This The Battle for Open Source Supremacy? by billm

The industry pundits are lining up behind the idea that Sun's aquisition of MySQL last week is setting up a battle between Red Hat and Sun for open source supremacy. Is it? Maybe. It would be interesting to hear from a fly on the wall what is being said about this in places like IBM, Oracle, HP, SAP, and Microsoft.

In any event, here is very small selection of a very large set of what is being said online:

The MySQL deal , which is slated to close in the first half of 2008, is a sign that Sun is pushing into more open-source software applications and could even enter the Linux market, the terrain of companies like Red Hat. "Sun is doing more and more with being a provider of open source in this enterprise infrastructure space," says Raven Zachary, an open-source analyst at 451 Group. "I'd start to look at them as a bigger player in software, especially open-source software, through this and other acquisitions."

 Sun is attempting to become the leading open source SOA vendor, going against rival JBoss from Red Hat, Inc.

Dave Rosenberg, CEO of MuleSource, supplier of a lightweight, open source enterprise service bus, said Sun is reinventing itself as a disruptive company, one that could gain revenue from better-established players, such asIBM (NYSE: IBM) and Oracle, by pursuing an open source strategy with Sun's technical support behind them. In the process, it's also likely to become a keener competitor of Red Hat's, he added.

A few months back, I predicted that Red Hat and MySQL would wind up competing with one another. After all, Red Hat has pushed beyond Linux and now offers middleware. Red Hat also works closely with open source application providers like SugarCRM. Meanwhile, MySQL also works closely with open source application providers.  The question becomes: Will the database (MySQL) or operating system (Red Hat Linux) sit in the middle of the open source universe? For now, it doesn't matter. Both MySQL and Red Hat have plenty of room to grow. But the Sun/MySQL combo will need to both compete and cooperate with Red Hat.

Meet the world's premier open source vendor - Sun

I will be very interesting to watch how Sun's acquisition of MySQL affects the jocking for position in the rapidly growing market for commercial open source software. 

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