Longtime Microsoft foe Novell has signed an agreement to acquire SuSE Linux
for $210 million in cash, while IBM, the most powerful backer of the
open-source operating system, will take a $50 million investment in Novell,
the companies said Tuesday.
The move could boost the fortunes of SuSE, the No. 2 seller of Linux,
increase the competitive pressure on No. 1 Red Hat, and provides a new
direction for Novell's ongoing rivalry with Microsoft.
The move is the second Linux acquisition for the Provo, Utah-based company,
which bought desktop Linux software specialist Ximian in August. Though
Ximian gave Novell software for using Linux on desktop computers, SuSE is
strongest with software for Linux on servers, the networked machines that
handle chores such as hosting Web sites and routing e-mail.
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