Last week, when Intel Corporation announced it was acquiring an equity stake in Linux vendor Red Hat software, heads turned: Intel is, together with Microsoft, the bedrock of the so-called "Wintel" duopoly, and many were sure that Microsoft would have challenged the agreement in its pre-antitrust lawsuit days. Well, it turns out Microsoft isn't that worried about Linux after all. At least not publicly.
"A number of analysts have said that Linux will take market share away from NT. We don't see this as being true," says Ed Muth, the enterprise group marketing manager for Microsoft. "People are attracted to the Windows operating system for features that aren't shared by Linux."
As for Intel's relationship with Microsoft going south over the Linux backing, Muth says that it doesn't affect anything.
"Intel is a very business-oriented, practical company. One would imagine they looked at this as a way to increase the market share for their products," he said. "We respect and understand Intel's business model. Nothing in this small equity investment indicates any change in the relationship between Intel and Microsoft.