Mandriva Press Release Raises More Questions

Mandriva Linux

Mandriva S.A. issued a press release to announce the restructuring of its core business organization. While specifics were still not given, the main message did come through: Mandriva will survive, in some fashion, for a while anyway.

The statement said that Mandriva was important to several organizations, and thus, members of these organizations would be joining the Mandriva Board of Directors. This perhaps explains the new long term structuring and future distribution of Mandriva - which was explained as, "Mandriva Linux will be distributed exclusively by a sales and integrated IT network" and "OEM partnerships." New board member Jean-Noël de Galzain, President of IF Research said, "The company will focus first on its profitability and the promotion of a new commercial dynamic based on a range of innovative products offered through a channel of Value Added Resellers," but specific strategies would be revealed at the next board meeting. The announcement did include news that the latest version would be released shortly, but users are left to wait until that meeting to find out if a freely downloadable version would remain a part of the future strategy.

In the short term, Mandriva is concentrating on cutting costs and raising funds to stay afloat. The company is also negotiating with other investors, who will be revealed at the next board meeting.

The tone of the press release is uncharacteristic of Mandriva's communications and leaves one to wonder if all this is truly good news. While volunteer developers are invaluable to Mandriva's continued success, its paid developers are indispensable - and they've already lost several. If more developers are on the cut list, that will not bode well for Mandriva. A concentration on the commercial aspect is needed for Mandriva's continued survival, but nothing was said of the community other than it being a feather in their cap.

The bottom line of the July 7 press release is that it answered no real questions and, in fact, only left loyal community members scratching their heads once again.

UPDATE: Mandriva announced the release of Mandriva Linux 2010 Spring on July 8. The same day it was reported that NGI Fund acquired a stake in Mandriva in order to develop a Russian operating system.

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Susan Linton is a Linux writer and the owner of tuxmachines.org.

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Sad

Anonymous's picture

I remember when I got my first version of Mandrake (6.1). It had KDE which was new to me and all those shiny GUIs for admin tools. Years later, I bought the "Discovery" edition of MDV 2007 for the sum of $40. It was worth the money for the good distro (or so I thought) but when it came time for tech support, I got condescending answers and very little in the way of real help. So, Mandriva, if you want to stay in the desktop game, put that $40 distro back out there and teach your support personnel to communicate a little more clearly. I'll spend another $40 if you do.

what goes around comes around

Anonymous's picture

When the Mandriva management sacked Gail Duval on the basis of trivial issues, they did not know what they lost. Now - Ulteo is a great product/service that has a great future - wheras Mandriva is dying ...

Go figure..

Powerpack

Henrik's picture

I think its a dilemma to have One, Free and Powerpack. If you get LinuxPCOS or Pardus you got a full loaded distribution for free.
Right or wrong but most Linux user don't want to pay for a distribution. But the others Mandriva have not all the necessary mediacodecs.
So I not think their business plans will last any longer time.
Ubuntu is free to and make a small profit nowadays.

Inevitable...

LinuxLover's picture

Seriously, who didn't see this day coming? They've been spewing red ink for quite some time. Mandriva has been a brilliant Linux distribution that hasn't figured out how to make a business case of it. The game has changed since it's inception and glory days. I hope they get it figured out sooner than later. I use this distribution a lot, and shudder to think of it dying off.

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