Novell Claims Linux Lead in China

Who’s the Linux leader in China? That depends on who you ask and when. Novell claims it’s the leader today, and four months ago Turbolinux claimed it was the leader. And you can’t discount Red Flag Linux, either.

Basing its claim on data from IDC’s China Linux Market Analysis, 1H2005, Novell leads the Chinese Linux industry in revenue with a 32.9
percent market share, as well as in units shipped at 30 percent.

“Novell grew faster than the market average in the first half of 2005,” said
Nielse Jiang, market analyst at IDC China, in a statement.

However, in April, Turbolinux claimed it was the Linux leader in China, based on the IDC report “China Linux 2005-2009 Forecast and Analysis.”
According to the report, Turbolinux had a 62 percent market share based on server revenues in 2004.

The report also said Red Flag Linux was the leader based on client operating environments.

“Obviously, I can’t speak for Turbolinux,” Novell spokesperson Bruce Lowry
told “We think our success is due to active investment in China over the last year, both in terms of personnel and in establishing
local partnerships. Plus good old-fashioned hard work.”

Lowry explained that Novell has hired strong talent in the region and established some very important partnerships with major local companies,
including Hua Wei Technologies and CS2C.

“Jack Messman will be keynoting at LinuxWorld Beijing in a couple of weeks
time, and we’re going to continue to move aggressively forward there,” Lowry

Novell’s principal U.S.-based Enterprise Linux competitor, Red Hat, is no
stranger to China, either. Red Hat currently operates three offices in China:
in Bejing, Shanghai and Hong Kong.

The indigenous Asianux effort, backed by Oracle and developed by China’s Red Flag Linux and Japan’s Miracle Linux, is also a player in the space.

Sun Wah Linux, a Debian-based distribution and founding member of the Debian Common Core Alliance, is also poised for growth, thanks in part to
a partnership with Japan’s VA Linux Systems to jointly promote and develop Debian for Asia.

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