The effort to standardize the way Linux works has moved several
steps closer to reality in the last two weeks.
The effort, through Linux Standard Base (LSB) and several other projects, is
Linux's answer to avoiding some of the fragmentation that split Unix--the
operating system upon which Linux is modeled--into several incompatible
versions. That fragmentation is one of the reasons Microsoft was able to
make such progress with its more unified Windows products.
Some Linux companies, such as Caldera Systems and Turbolinux, believe
standardization will make it easier for Linux companies to
cooperate more on basic technology and compete on higher-level features.
On Monday, developers released version 1.1
of the Linux Development Platform Specification, said Scott McNeal of the Free Standards Group. That
specification is intended to make it easier to write programs that work on
several different versions of Linux, such as those from Red Hat, Caldera
In addition, on Wednesday the consortium released for public review version 2.2 of
its Filesystem Hierarchy Standard, which governs the location of key files
used by Linux and Unix.
With involvement from IBM, Intel, Oracle, Red Hat, Caldera, SuSE and others,
the LSB itself has moved a step closer to the planned release of its version
1.0 specification by the end of
the year, McNeil said. The group released version 0.6 last week.
George Kraft has been elected chairman of the LSB's technical committee,