``'Burlington Coat Factory Warehouse Corp. in Burlington, New Jersey is spending $1 million or so to buy 1,250 Linux-equipped PCs from Dell, but it won't pay Red Hat a dime for support', says Michael Prince, chief information officer. 'I suppose Red Hat's business model makes sense to somebody, but it makes no sense to us', he says.''--Daniel Lyons, Forbes, May 31, 1999. Then in September, Burlington ended up purchasing support from Red Hat.
The first big Linux stock rush happens. Shares in Applix more than double in volume, reaching nearly 27 million shares--three times the 9 million shares that are actually on the market.
SCO trashes Linux in a brochure distributed in Northern Europe: ``Linux at this moment can be considered more a plaything for IT students rather than a serious operating system in which to place the functioning, security and future of a business. Because Linux is basically a free-for-all it means that no individual person/company is accountable should anything go wrong, plus there is no way to predict which way Linux will evolve.''
Stock in Red Hat hits $135/share. The price seems unbelievably high at the time.
Sun Microsystems announces that it will release the source to Solaris under the Sun Community Source License. The actual release drew criticism: ``In a move aimed at Linux, Sun said it will announce Wednesday that it is making the source code for its new Solaris 8 operating system 'open'. Webster's has lots of definitions for the word, including 'not sealed, fastened, or locked'. But when you dig into the details of Sun's announcement, you'll find that what it is offering doesn't come close to meeting the dictionary's definition, let alone that of the Open Source movement.''--Lawrence Aragon, Redherring.com, January 26, 2000
``...if there's one thing about Linux users, they're do-ers, not whiners.''--Andy Patrizio,
Red Hat buys Cygnus for almost $700 million in stock. Rumors of other acquisitions by Red Hat begin to circulate and show no signs of stopping.
VA Linux Systems goes public after two repricings (originally priced at $11-$13/share). The final IPO price is $30/share; that price rises immediately to $300 before closing around $250. It sets the record for the biggest IPO rise in the history of the NASDAQ.
``Gee. Remember when the big question was 'How do we make money at this?'''--Eric Raymond
VA Linux Systems announces SourceForge (although the site had actually been up and running since November 1999). SourceForge also makes the code for its operation available under the GPL. By the end of the year, SourceForge hosted over 12,000 projects and 92,000 registered developers.
Version 1.0 of Red Flag Linux is released in the People's Republic of China.
Transmeta breaks its long silence and tells the world what it has been up to--the Crusoe chip, of course.
The Linux Professional Institute announces the availability of its first Linux professional certification exam.
Linux wannabe press releases flow from companies trying to ride on the success of Linux stocks. Vitamins.com, for example, posts the following: ``Vitamins.com has further distinguished itself in the competitive Internet health industry race by being one of the first to integrate the Linux Operating System, produced by Red Hat, the leading developer and provider of open-source software solutions.''
The latest IDC report suggests that Linux now ranks as the ``second-most-popular operating system for server computers'', with 25% of the server operating system sales in 1999. Windows NT is first with 38% and NetWare ranks third with 19%. IDC previously predicted that Linux would get up to the number two position--in 2002 or 2003. The revolution appears to be well ahead of schedule.
VA Linux Systems acquisition of Andover.net in a high-profile purchase that values Andover shares at 0.425 of VA's, or roughly $50/share. Andover.net is the owner of the popular web sites Slashdot.org and Freshmeat.org.
LinuxMall.com and Frank Kaspar and Associates also have made plans to merge. LinuxMall.com has been at the top of the retail side of Linux almost since the very beginning; Kaspar is one of the largest distribution channels.
Red Hat wins InfoWorld's ``Product of the Year'' award for the fourth time in a row.
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Some of key questions to be discussed are:
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