Linux Founder Paranoid About Microsoft (MSFT)

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Everywhere he looks Linux founder Linus Torvalds see Microsoft (MSFT). Redmond attacks him while he is sleeping. According to ZDNet, MSFT "is falling short with its technology and, because it cannot win against open source on price, it is trying to encourage inertia in the IT industry, the creator of the Linux operating system said."

Call it founder’s paranoia, but Torvalds believes that Microsoft’s claim that open source software violates 235 of its patents is simply a smoke screen to keep enterprises from using his stuff.

But, Torvald misses the point. It is unlikely that huge corporations and government spend their time worrying about Microsoft suing them. It would not risk alienating its customer base.

Redhat (RHT), the largest company in the business of marking Linux to enterprises, has a market cap of only $4.2 billion. In the last quarter, it had revenue of $118 million and operating income of less than $15 million. Its numbers are a bell weather for Linux adoption. And, the modest size of its revenue speaks volumes.

Douglas A. McIntyre