UnitedLinux signs up IBM, AMD as partners

Fresh off their agreement to collaborate on advanced chip-making techniques, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) and IBM Corp. are teaming up with UnitedLinux to help determine what features wind up in forthcoming versions of the Linux operating system from the group, the companies said in a release.

UnitedLinux is an industry consortium made up of Linux vendors Conectiva SA, The SCO Group, SuSE Linux AG, and Turbolinux Inc. At Comdex in November, it released a Linux version for enterprise servers called UnitedLinux 1.0 to which each company has added its own set of features.

The two companies will help UnitedLinux develop the next version of the software, which is due in the fourth quarter of this year, said Paula Hunter, general manager of UnitedLinux based in Wakefield, Mass. “(They) will participate in joint marketing programs, and have access to special support and technology programs,” she said. UnitedLinux 1.0 has already been certified for both IBM and AMD’s products, including IBM’s eServers and AMD’s forthcoming 64-bit Opteron processors, she said.

IBM and AMD will be considered Technology Partners, the first companies to receive that designation, Hunter said. While UnitedLinux works with many companies, IBM and AMD represent “the most comprehensive business relationship with players outside of the UnitedLinux founders,” she said.

Other companies will be announced as Technology Partners over the coming weeks, she said. The Linux trade show, Linuxworld, comes to the Javits Center in New York on Jan. 22.

IBM and AMD recently agreed to work together on developing future process technologies for chip manufacturing.