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French Linux seller acquires education company

French Linux seller MandrakeSoft acquires Coursemetric, an online education company, as part of an effort to expand its services.

NEW YORK--French Linux seller MandrakeSoft has acquired Coursemetric, an online education company, as part of an effort to expand its services.

Terms of the deal, announced Thursday at the LinuxWorld Conference and Expo, were not disclosed.

Paris-based MandrakeSoft makes a version of Linux that competes with editions from Red Hat, Caldera Systems, SuSE, Turbolinux and others. Coursemetric, based in Berkeley, Calif., will rebuild MandrakeSoft's internal programming tool system, while its software will become the heart of a new educational Web site called MandrakeCampus.com.

The coursework on the site is designed to adjust to the constantly shifting sands of the Linux and open-source landscape, MandrakeSoft said. The site will offer streaming video and audio capabilities and will allow outside contributors to house their own courses at the site.

In addition, the company announced MandrakeExpert.com, which lets people ask experts for advice and optionally pay those experts money.

MandrakeSoft has a support partnership with IBM in France, but the company has aspirations to expand to a more global presence, new Chief Executive Henri Poole has said.