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Red Hat to Launch E-Commerce Suite

Red Hat Inc. Monday will unveil its Red Hat E-Commerce suite in an effort to extend itself beyond its core Red Hat Linux franchise.

"You'll see us pusing into business solutions, delivering value by pushing open source systems at levels above the operating system," said Red Hat Director of Product Development Charles Gold.

But while the company is broadening its focus, it is not abandoning the open source movement which it has had a part in leading into the mainstream.

Red Hat E-Commerce suite will be targeted at mid-size businesses and will be open source. It is built on Secure Webserver powered by Apache, Red Hat Database (an open source database solution based on PostgreSQL 7.1), and Red Hat Linux 7.1, all wrapped around the Interchange 4.8 e-commerce platform Red Hat picked up when it acquired open source developer Akopia earlier this year. It also includes CommerceLauncher, a Web-based configuration tool which guides users through configuration of the entire E-Commerce suite. Red Hat said CommerceLauncher will allow users to have the suite up and running in a matter of hours.

The components are free and downloadable for the Web, but Red Hat is looking to license the suite, fully integrated and optimized to work together, together with service center support and documentation, for $2,995 for a pre-paid, year-long subscription. It is also available for $275 per month for a minimum of 12 months. Support includes 12 months of product updates and upgrades, 12 months of Red Hat network for Red Hat Linux, 3 hours of developer consulting for the first 30 days, 30 days of telephone-based support and 12 months of Web-based support.

The company is also offering a number of options for enhanced E-Commerce support and services, including multi-tiered support options for the implementation and use of the suite, professional consulting, managed hosting services and a range of training programs.

Red Hat is hoping to entice companies that need a robust e-commerce suite, but can't afford the multimillion dollar solutions from industry leaders like Oracle Corp. or BroadVision , to go with its solution.

"The Red Hat E-Commerce Suite fills a significant gap between expensive, complex enterprise e-commerce applications and entry-level e-commerce offerings," said Michele Rosen, Research Manager for Application Development and Deployment at IDC. "Because it's based on established open source technologies, the suite provides functionality and customizability similar to that found in high-end e-commerce applications but at a price within mid-sized business' budgets."



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