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Motorola turns to Caldera for Linux push

Chip company strikes deal for embedded, desktop and server Linux distributions

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Motorola will next week leap onto the Linux bandwagon through a technology partnership with Caldera. The deal with Caldera takes in both sides to the company: its role as a Linux distributor, and as a developer of Linux technology for embedded applications through its Lineo subsidiary. Motorola's interest is primarily in the latter, and it seems likely that its agreement with Lineo will see the latter's Embedix OS, its embedded version of Linux, ported to Motorola's key embedded CPU families: PowerPC, mCore and the still-popular 680x0 series. With more and more of Motorola's customers looking to Linux as a low-cost OS for their applications, it makes sense for the company to make it as easy as it can for them to adopt the open source OS. The deal with Caldera Systems, Caldera's desktop and server Linux operation, would presumably extend that help to customers working in the information appliance arena, where you're developing what are essentially cut-down PCs rather than true embedded systems. Hopefully, the result will be a version of OpenLinux for the PowerPC processor. Users of PowerPC-based systems can choose between LinuxPPC and Yellow Dog Linux distributions of the open source OS, but winning the support of a 'name' distributor would provide the platform with a major boost, particularly for Motorola and Apple, both keen to win business away from Intel. ®

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