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OSDL creates client Linux spec

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The nonprofit vendor consortium OSDL, or the Open Source Development Labs, is to create a set of specifications for commercial client Linux by mid-year. OSDL already has specifications for Carrier Grade Linux aimed at the telco market - version 2.0 of which was released in November - and a Data Center Linux.

OSDL says it isn't out to create a Microsoft Windows replacement.

"The taskforce specifically identified a range of business computing usage models to investigate, not just that of knowledge worker productivity," says the Labs in an FAQ. "The Working group will examine both end-to-end Linux solutions as well as interoperability with other operating systems used in business."

It's hard to see how a consortium of vendors can know what the users want better than the users themselves. While Carrier Grade Linux makes sense in a vertical industry that demands standards - NEBS-compliance is a requirement for communications equipment - desktop software is driven by the demands of each business.

Founded in 2000, the Labs has enjoyed a fairly low profile - issuing just seven press releases in three years - until recently. Last year OSDL employed Linus Torvalds and chief kernel maintainer Andrew Morton, and since August big guns Sun Microsystems, NetApp and Novell have signed on board. ®

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