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Red Hat yesterday announced - or rather Oracle announced on its behalf - that the next release of Red Hat Linux will integrate support for Java support, provide a journaling file system and add the Motif GUI.

The Oracle connection comes from the two companies' plan to promote Oracle 8i on Linux. The notoriously anti-Microsoft database giant is already pushing its product hard as a key e-commerce tool on Windows, and by working with Red Hat it can provide a solution that's entirely Windows-free.

To that end, Red Hat will build stronger links to Oracle 8i into its Linux distribution. The journaling file system, which records file operations, making recovery from crashes a less haphazard - and therefore faster - operation, a new volume manager and support for greater amounts of RAM all help here too.

The integrated Java support will allow Red Hat systems to run back-end Java applets and applications. Red Hat Linux (6.2?) will also ship with Motif 2.1, providing Red Hat users with three X Window-based GUIs: Motif, Gnome and KDE. Motif brings support for the Common Desktop Environment to Red Hat Linux, and brings a greater degree of cross platform support and scope for internationalisation than Linux' other graphical environments.

Oracle also touted a future IA-64 version of Red Hat's OS, but given that's where the Intel-based server market is going anyway, Red Hat would be plain daft not to support it. Still, it does show Oracle's keenness to keep pushing Red Hat as a solid alternative to Windows 2000. The Itanium version of the open source OS is some way off, but the next version of Red Hat Linux will be released mid December. ®

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