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Red Hat Exchange Is Dead

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the milk-for-free dept.

Linux Business 88

darthcamaro writes "In 2007, Red Hat launched the Red Hat Exchange (RHX) — an appstore, if you will, of open source partner applications sold from a Red Hat website. Sounds like a good idea, right? While an appstore works well for Apple, turns out that an appstore for open source (from a Linux vendor) isn't such a good idea. 'When we came out with RHX we were hoping for more ambitious adoption but we've learned that selling third-party applications via a marketplace is challenging,' Mike Evans, Red Hat's vice president of corporate development said. 'When you've got marketplaces that offer buyers the choice of buying in the marketplace or directly from the vendor themselves, which is what our marketplace was, there isn't a real efficient marketplace.'"

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Maybe... (5, Insightful)

StrategicIrony (1183007) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043728)

Maybed if they loaded it up with DRM, put restrictive policies in place to block certain apps and prevented open source publication of published apps, they would have been more successful.

Then again, maybe not.

Re:Maybe... (2, Insightful)

iamhassi (659463) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043764)

I think it works better for a phone than a computer. We're use to our computers being open, just finding software ourselves online or browsing computer software aisles and reading the backs of boxes.

Phones, for the most part, have always been closed boxes, so when Apple offered a closed box with an "apple approved" app store, people were impressed. No one has ever offered a store on phones before, and if they did they didn't do a very good job.

Re:Maybe... (2, Interesting)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043798)

No one has ever offered a store on phones before,

Or, more generally, even just a teeny-tiny bit of opening up a platform that has been nearly universally 'closed' proved to be very popular.

Just think how much more popular it would be with users if it was fully opened up.

Re:Maybe... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31043856)

Did You Know? After maintaining a vow of silence for almost 7 years, Red Hat
Linux founder Marc Ewing now freely admits that he named Red Hat Linux after
Limp Bizkit frontman Fred Durst's trademark red New York Yankees baseball
cap.
Durst and Ewing met in Ewing's hometown of Raleigh, North Carolina (Durst
was raised in Gastonia, NC), where they became fast friends, sharing the
same passion for low-level system programming.
Durst collaborated with Ewing on the first preview beta of Red Hat Linux
before the demands of his rocketing stardom forced him to abandon his hobby
and tour with his band.
Durst's position on the development team was filled by Damien Neil, and not
many know of his contribution to the popular Linux distribution; however, a
google search through the source code on Redhat.com
(http://www.google.com/search?q=wfd+site:redhat.com) reveals many snippets
of code authored by 'wfd', Durst's initials (William Frederick Durst).
Durst asked Ewing to keep his 'geeky' roots a secret as it would not lend
itself to Durst's bad boy image, but as Ewing points out, it was "only a
matter of time" before the origins of his NASDAQ-100 company's name were
uncovered.

Re:Maybe... (1)

RCL (891376) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045866)

I'm not sure that would be more popular. Among developers, certainly, but mere users might not like turning their phones into "sort of" PCs with spyware, adware, low quality games and etc. It would turn phone's software ecosystem from an asphalted city into tropic jungle. Sure, lifeforms are much more diverse in jungles than they are in a city, but I personally prefer living in sterile rooms and not being afraid of parasites.

Re:Maybe... (1)

aquila.solo (1231830) | more than 4 years ago | (#31048012)

Wow, seriously?

First of all, it is possible to secure an OS. Secondly, It seems that people are more than eager to fill their phones up with crap. How many of those "Text ABC to 123 for free ringtonz!!!1" and other such ads do we see? You think they're 100% legit?

And then there's the "low-quality" games people hate so much. Like Bejeweled, Solitaire, etc. Maybe people are just holding out for Crysis or DNF so they can have a quality gaming experience while they're waiting in line...

Re:Maybe... (1)

RCL (891376) | more than 4 years ago | (#31048182)

By "low quality games" I was referring to games that crash, that look like shit, that contain malicious code etc - everything that would be below publisher's threshold.

Secondly, I'm not sure that it is possible to secure an open platform (i.e. one that you can freely develop for) - I can't think of any example at least. Every OS I used has been successfully exploited.

I agree that a lot of people (especially non-technical) like filling their phones/computers/etc with crap. But most people also run anti-viruses to filter malicious "crapware" - do you want antiviruses for phones, too?

Returning to the start of discussion - given two choices: "reasonably open" platform controlled by its vendor (like iPhone) or free-for-all PC-like environment where you can download software from the web, but you have to use (perhaps commercial) anti-virus, participating in never ending arms race between virus and anti-virus writers, what would you choose?

Re:Maybe... (1)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 4 years ago | (#31049526)

First of all, it is possible to secure an OS.

How do you secure an OS upon which any end user can run arbitrary code ?

Re:Maybe... (4, Interesting)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043828)

Yeah, I think it really has to do with expectations. I have a friend who sells an app in the Android app store, and also provides it for free on his website--- both source and binary versions. Plenty of people still buy it from the app store, because that's what they're used to doing.

Re:Maybe... (2, Insightful)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043846)

Yeah, I think it really has to do with expectations.

I think that it has everything to do with expectations too. With an app store on a phone it is considered to many as the only way to get apps/games for that phone (I know its not the only way, but for many people I think they only know of that route). As for an OS's programs, everyone I know will google first before even considering what to get, sometimes to see if they can find a free one, other times to see a review of different programs since all OS's are much older then smartphone OS's like the iPhone and in turn have a much large amount of programs to choose from.

Re:Maybe... (4, Insightful)

ickleberry (864871) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044136)

Maybe you are used to having phones that were closed box, but back in the day I went from having a phone that couldn't run any apps to having a phone that could install and run .jar and .jad J2ME applications and I had to go and look for them on the interwebs.

Unfortunately as time went on a lot of crapware J2ME got released that were basically just front-ends for commercial web services and a lot of the J2ME app sites got greedy, put all their sponsored crapware at the top and charged programmers to have their apps (even freeware) listed.

Even so, going from installing .jar/.jad and later .sis/.sisx seems to a limited 'app store' seems like a huge step backwards to me.

Re:Maybe... (1)

jgrahn (181062) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044944)

I think it works better for a phone than a computer. We're use to our computers being open, just finding software ourselves online or browsing computer software aisles and reading the backs of boxes. Phones, for the most part, have always been closed boxes, [...]

Exactly. That's why I refuse to use a phone for anything but making calls -- I'm not used to being locked up and kept in the dark. The computers I've used have always been hackable and programmable.

Re:Maybe... (2, Informative)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046226)

Exactly. That's why I refuse to use a phone for anything but making calls

In any case, one can't count on your contact having a phone (or telco plan) capable of doing anything more than calls or SMS. Lots of people have basic phones, but possibly even more have comparatively "smart" devices that are (a) connected to a plan that doesn't offer more than a typically flaky GPRS conection or (b) connected to an owner that doesn't know what to to with anything other than a phone call.

Re:Maybe... (1)

iamhassi (659463) | more than 4 years ago | (#31047758)

"Exactly. That's why I refuse to use a phone for anything but making calls"

Sure that's fine... for now, but in time you'll be looked on as the wierdo that doesn't have a smartphone, in the same manner that people think it's strange for someone not to own a cellphone now, or as I'm sure 60+ years ago it became strange to not have a phone in your house.

As technology advances you're pretty much forced by society to either adapt or be shunned. Phones that were $400 with contract and very basic internet access 5 years ago are less than $100 today with a full internet browser and voice search. [techcrunch.com] Imagine what it will be like in just another 5 years?

Re:Maybe... (1)

mikechant (729173) | more than 4 years ago | (#31052110)

or as I'm sure 60+ years ago it became strange to not have a phone in your house.

Don't know about the US, but in the UK it was more like 30-40 years ago (1970's-->1980's) when it became strange not to have a landline.

Re:Maybe... (1)

theshowmecanuck (703852) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046874)

It works better for licenses that don't let you take all the work that someone takes their time and thus money (since they can't earn a living if they are spending their time developing something on their own) to build and give it away for free just by 'forking' the code. There is no incentive to build quality programs for sale on a store with the GPL model. Small apps are just that, small. It is highly unlikely that you will be paid to support one. How many applications out there for your PC do you pay for support? Most just work pretty good because the monetary incentive is there to build it to work well, or no-one will buy it from you and you starve.

Don't get me wrong. I like Linux and BSD, and think it makes a great server platform. But then again, server apps are what businesses WILL pay money for, for support. That is why there are lots of good server based products for Linux, and lots of marginal quality products for userland. I know for example that there are some Linux DAW's (digital audio workstation) out there, like Audacity, and a few others with more features. But none come close to Cubase 5 or it's commercial competitors. No one pays for support for them. They provide more features that work right, right out of the box. Sure they charge a lot, but it is a very complex program that they make work very well the first time you install it... and they have incentive to provide patches for issues quickly so they don't lose their customers if there is a problem. It is why I use Cubase and not Audicity.

Anyway, I use Linux server apps all the time. Other work is done on windows. I notice the development tools for the server apps exist for Linux, but the software design tools are almost exclusively in Windows. We use Postgres at work for its GIS functionality (sure MySQL has *some* GIS functionality but it is very limited and *way* behind Postgres in this respect). There are no open source ERD tools that are worth a shit for Postgres that run in Linux. Quest makes Toad Data Modeler that supports Postgres for a reasonable price. While its support for Postgres is not as good as for Oracle or SQL Server (their bread and butter), it is still miles beyond the open source offerings. That is because they are complex tools that take a lot of effort to build, and you don't make any money with them if it is open source, because leaches 'fork' your code after you have done all the hard work, and kill your business. That is why the company that originally made the Toad Data Modeler couldn't make enough money and were bought by Quest. Leaches kill. Sure the license says it's ok, but it is what holds Linux back. It is why I pay for my distributions that I use at home. Someone has to earn a living in order for them to keep putting out distributions. That is why I don't use distros like CentOS. Sure Redhat open sources all their admin tools, so let's use their stuff because we don't want to pay them for the work they did, instead of paying them and using open source for what it was originally intended, to be able to modify the stuff you now own. [dismounts soapbox]

It's not DRM ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31043774)

... but the fact that OSS comes with the notion of "libre", which many people, rightly or wrongly, equate with "Free of Charge".

Re:Maybe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31043806)

Yeah, maybe they could have gotten content providers to agree to offer things that people actually *wanted*.

Re:Maybe... (4, Insightful)

Tiger4 (840741) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043842)

If the App store offered some kind of seal of approval it might have done better. Say what you will about DRM at Apple, the app store at least gives the impression that all the apps there will work seamlessly together.

OSS may be the greatest development model, bug fixes better and faster, blah blah blah, but really what people want to know is that it is going to work. If a knowledgeable, trusted, third party says it will, people value ($$$) that highly. No one likes to waste time on crappy apps, hoping a fix will come along RSN.

Yes, currently running in 2D... (1, Informative)

mrmeval (662166) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044336)

I am running Fedora 11 and did a normal update. Now I can't get into X. I had to rip out all the ATI drives I'm getting from rpmfusion because they did an update but neglected to provide the proprietary ATI drivers. This is an ongoing problem with them being stupid gits. Yes I've turned them off and I'll run 2D until I can scam a college license for windows 7

Tell me what good is open source if it doesn't work? If audio stutters and dies? If I cannot depend that long term features will not be ripped out in a fury of religious (emacs) righteousness?

I don't want to fuck with fixing shit anymore I have shit to do.

Re:Yes, currently running in 2D... (1, Informative)

turbidostato (878842) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044650)

"I am running Fedora 11 and did a normal update. Now I can't get into X."

Your problem. Fedora is and always has been Red Hat's test bed. When you use a testing system for anything you depend on, whatever happens is your own fault.

"I had to rip out all the ATI drives I'm getting from rpmfusion"

So you were not only using a test OS but you even merged it with third party providers and you still are surprised because things breaks.

"Tell me what good is open source if it doesn't work?"

Tell me what good is using a screwdriver for a hammer. I use Fedora for what it's meant: technology preview, and it has always worked for me within expectations. Fedora works when used as intended. Your problem if you try to use it "out of specs".

"I don't want to fuck with fixing shit anymore I have shit to do."

Me too. And you know what? My production systems don't need me wasting time "fixing shit" -of course, I don't use technology preview systems on production environments. Maybe it's because I know my shit better than you. That's again... your problem, not Fedora's.

Re:Yes, currently running in 2D... (0, Offtopic)

jgrahn (181062) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044978)

"I had to rip out all the ATI drives I'm getting from rpmfusion" So you were not only using a test OS but you even merged it with third party providers and you still are surprised because things breaks. [etc]

And also, *his* problem that he's buying hardware with no free driver support, rewarding hardware vendors who try to make life hard for their users.

(Apart from that, I don't see "running in 2D" as a big enough problem to make me cash out $$$ for Windows 7. Isn't it simpler and cheaper to buy a non-broken graphics card?)

Re:Yes, currently running in 2D... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046282)

Fedora is and always has been Red Hat's test bed.

You're either very young or you have a short memory. Redhat was always Redhat from 1994 until about 2003 when the non-enterprise version of the distro got funneled off into Fedora.

Re:Yes, currently running in 2D... (1)

tftp (111690) | more than 4 years ago | (#31047644)

Your problem. Fedora is and always has been Red Hat's test bed

You're either very young or you have a short memory.

No, turbidostato is correct. Fedora for the entire length of its existence was a testbed. Here is what they say today [fedoraproject.org] :

The Fedora Project is sponsored by Red Hat, which invests in our infrastructure and resources to encourage collaboration and incubate innovative new technologies. Some of these technologies may later be integrated into Red Hat products.

The fact that RH did not have a testbed distribution until Fedora doesn't affect Fedora in the slightest.

Re:Yes, currently running in 2D... (1)

turbidostato (878842) | more than 4 years ago | (#31051776)

"You're either very young or you have a short memory."

Maybe you are right. Tell me when, in its whole history, Fedora was not Red Hat's technology preview, then.

Switch to ubuntu and an nvidia card (2, Funny)

voss (52565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045774)

Ive used Nvidia cards with my desktops and laptops with ubuntu(and Linux Mint which is based on ubuntu) couple years now.
I had one problem in 2 years and all that I had to do was rollback to the previous nvidia driver in the package manager.

What you have is not a linux problem its a Fedora and ATI problem. The Fedora logo should be a Fedora hat on guinea pig :-/

Re:Yes, currently running in 2D... (1)

westyvw (653833) | more than 4 years ago | (#31050842)

With the open ATI drivers working very well, why would you use the proprietary ones? You sure you just arent doing this right?

Re:Maybe... (1)

Waccoon (1186667) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044984)

OSS...
...know that it is going to work.

If there's one thing I've always known since my Amiga days, it's that design always trumps technology. Always.

Re:Maybe... (1)

seandiggity (992657) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045378)

That Apple "seal of approval" doesn't mean much as far as bugs go. The reaction of an iPhone app to a bug seems to be just crashing without giving feedback to the user, so it's tough to pinpoint problems.

At any rate, I think app stores are a hug step backwards from package management and repositories. There was some buzz about Canonical going the app store route with Ubuntu, I hope Red Hat's experience turns them away from that direction.

Re:Maybe... (1)

sneilan (1416093) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043932)

Make more score 5 funny comments! NOW!

Re:Maybe... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31044610)

You forgot the mass-brainwash and Reality Distortion Field.

Re:Maybe... (1)

DJRumpy (1345787) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045382)

"You forgot the mass-brainwash and Reality Distortion Field."

I'm amazed that we got down through what, about 10 posts before the trolls started showing up. Did you ever consider that perhaps the reality distortion field exists, but you happen to be the one that's in it? I don't consider the opinions of most geeks (including myself) to be mainstream when it comes to comparing geeks with 'joe user'. Reality cuts both ways my friend. Food for thought...

As to the App store, I've never thought it was that difficult of a concept. People (including myself) like the idea that an app has been certified. It leaves me with a certain confidence that it is safe. Oh, I'm not naive enough to think that no malware will ever get through. I seem to recall one that did (using unapproved API's to snoop user contacts), but it was immediately removed by Apple. I am fairly confident that I won't have an issue and that's key. I also have the leverage of Apple behind purchases I make. If something is bogus, or doesn't work, I have a method to recoup my cash which normally wouldn't be available to me.

App store is convenient, and honestly, even being a geek, I have no need for Skype on a cell phone. I don't use any 3rd party Google apps, other than the built in Maps and gmail. I don't find it restrictive in the slightest. In that respect, I expect I'm much more in tune with my non-nerd cousins.

As to the Red Hat Exchange, did it have enough visibility, or any benefits over just grabbing what you needed off of Google?

Re:Maybe... (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045646)

I'm amazed that we got down through what, about 10 posts before the trolls started showing up. Did you ever consider that perhaps the reality distortion field exists, but you happen to be the one that's in it? I don't consider the opinions of most geeks (including myself) to be mainstream when it comes to comparing geeks with 'joe user'. Reality cuts both ways my friend. Food for thought...

The RDF is a term coined in '81 by the current Vice President of Apple Inc, "to describe company co-founder Steve Jobs' charisma and its effects on the developers working on the Mac project."

So Apple itself says it exists, and only affects Apple 'fans'.

Re:Maybe... (1)

DJRumpy (1345787) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045704)

No, it was used by Budd Tribble to describe the affect Steve Jobs had on the developers working on the Mac project.

Re:Maybe... (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046390)

even being a geek, I have no need for Skype on a cell phone...

Geek credentials aside, I would be overjoyed if I could find a mobile (i.e. cell) phone with skype capabilities that didn't involve gouging the user on data [as well as | rather than] call charges. For the time being at least, the telcos have a free ride at our expense, and the experience is wearing a bit thin.

Re:Maybe... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31045628)

Maybe linux users are cheapskates who refuse to pay for other peoples hard work. But they hide this by saying they are all about "freedom".

The ideal would be to merge Freshmeat with Yum (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31043762)

Would that work?

Re:The ideal would be to merge Freshmeat with Yum (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31044092)

You'd probably have to cook it first.

A Linux 'app store' is like a church of atheism (5, Interesting)

eparker05 (1738842) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043780)

Most Linux projects are either made by FOSS hobbyists, or by big-name corporations, neither of those groups want to be tied into a distribution system owned by Red Hat.

Re:A Linux 'app store' is like a church of atheism (1)

mec08 (1734462) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044246)

Agree!

Re:A Linux 'app store' is like a church of atheism (2, Informative)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044578)

The Debian repositories are an app store, and I don't see FOSS people avoiding those.

Re:A Linux 'app store' is like a church of atheism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31046248)

There's a big difference between an app store and a repository. I reject your thesis.

Re:A Linux 'app store' is like a church of atheism (2, Informative)

selven (1556643) | more than 4 years ago | (#31049798)

What is this difference? Most repositories have a filtering process (otherwise any malware author could get something in there, removing its security advantage). The only one I see is the presence of money, but an app store is still called an app store even if it offers free stuff.

Re:A Linux 'app store' is like a church of atheism (1)

dimeglio (456244) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046802)

Apple app store is for consumers (i.e. mom and grand dad). RHX is selling enterprise solutions via an app store. I think that was the problem here. The business model failed.

Re:A Linux 'app store' is like a church of atheism (1)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 4 years ago | (#31049854)

Ironically, the same is true for the Apple AppStore, minus the FOSS part. Apps are either Hobbyist (sometimes turned professional thanks to AppStore sales) or big-name corporations.

Yet seems its doing fine.

Perhaps the App Store is only part of the equation? Perhaps target audience, actual value of the store to that audience, and value of the items on the store have a little bit to do with it as well?

Perhaps the fact that this is the first time I've ever heard of it has something to do with it, I heard about the Apple store before it even opened, and the Redhat store I didn't know existed till it closed.

Perhaps you're spending too much time coming up with excuses for failure that you can blame on something/someone else rather than fixing the problem.

On think FOSS people never seem to have a problem with is faith in themselves. At some point, you might want to consider breaking down and coming to the conclusion that while you think its 'perfect in every way' that you are part of an amazingly small minority and that you need to target the majority.

Or, better yet, stop dicking around and trying to half assed act like a commercial/proprietary software eco system. Either jump on the train, learn the rules and compete, or stop trying to take over the world by being a shitty copy of what people want and thinking you'll when on technical superiority.

Technically superior products and ideas NEVER WIN because thats not ALL PEOPLE WANT out of a product.

Best Guess (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31043804)

Pricing on enterprise software is somewhat variable depending on purchase quantities. Red Hat probably had everything at list price or maybe slightly below. In addition to not being a good deal for most of their customers, they probably also ticked off the sales guys that were earring fat commissions on the software sales. So basically they pissed off their customers and their partners. Which, my business skilled friends tell me, is not a good way to make money.

Re:Best Guess (1)

ThePhilips (752041) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044426)

Very true.

Somebody had forgotten to take into account the difference between average RH customer and average Apple customer.

P.S. In past I have seen (actually helped implementing) a B2B "solution" for a company with lots of partners. Think of a board like Tweeter, but for bids and offers. Most striking part to me was that the company was actually taking 100% passive approach to the B2B portal: goal wasn't to consolidate their market place or monitor the partners but rather create a place for the partners and customers where they can find each other and connect.

Re:Best Guess (1)

sourcerror (1718066) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044492)

Another thing is, that the mediating should have different price for cheap (targeted to end-users) and enterprisy software.

Au contraire... (4, Insightful)

Angst Badger (8636) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043808)

'When you've got marketplaces that offer buyers the choice of buying in the marketplace or directly from the vendor themselves, which is what our marketplace was, there isn't a real efficient marketplace.'

Actually, it sounds like the market worked with almost textbook efficiency.

Re:Au contraire... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31044012)

It really mystifies me how a corporation can understand the concept of open source, but can't understand that in such a market distributors have 0 value. Open source software can't be sold as a product unto itself. It must be sold as a larger value add. Simply listing a bunch of software and saying, "Search through this for what you need" is not valuable because it doesn't provide anything substantially more than what people get on the internet for free. However, if you have a good sales force and are able to provide some upfront analysis of a customer's problem, I suppose you might be able to make some money. A large corporation might ask, "this is the problem we have, who would be best to solve it?" Finding the appropriate people to do the work (including supplying software, support and training) could be valuable. The thing is, I rather suspect that this will never happen. Having talked to Novel sales people before, and reading this article where Redhat talk about "partnering in various sales channels" I get the impression that they still think they are selling software. Nowhere do I see them understanding the idea of matching *people* with problems to *people* with solutions.

I guess we'll see.

Re:Au contraire... (1)

sourcerror (1718066) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044446)

I would have done one of the following in place of Redhat:
1, Get money for listing the software (Hey, I'm advertising you!)
2, Force the producer via contract to not underbid the price in the appstore in different places. (And get appropriate percentage of the sale.)

Or any kind of linear combination of the two.

Re:Au contraire... (2, Interesting)

turbidostato (878842) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044692)

"It really mystifies me how a corporation can understand the concept of open source, but can't understand that in such a market distributors have 0 value."

True. But integrators can rise a high value (Red Hat should know this: they basically make a living out of being integrators).

"Open source software can't be sold as a product unto itself."

False. Open source software *licenses* can't be sold. But software? Of course software can be sold as a product by itself. In fact, it is in the closed source camp where you are unable to sell software since once you sell it it's yours no more so you are force to sell licenses instead. The company that hires me is such an example: we develop open source for a living and we certainly sell it to the customers that ask for it: "-What do you need?" "-Whatever"; then we develop, install, support the "whatever" our client needs and present a bill for the work done. Pretty simple.

"I get the impression that they still think they are selling software."

I get the impression that they still think they are selling software *licenses*.

Re:Au contraire... (2, Insightful)

hey! (33014) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046232)

I don't think distributor necessarily have zero value. They just can't demand a cut without *adding* value.

Lol. Linux fails copying Apple again. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31043834)

So let me get this straight. Even with the LARGEST Linux company putting its full weight behind the effort, and even with every opportunity to copy all the best features of the app store model from Apple, you guys still couldn't keep the lights on? This would be hilarious if it weren't so sad. Will Linux forever be mired in 80's Unix technology? Looks like it.

Think Different. Think Better. Think Apple.

Re:Lol. Linux fails copying Apple again. (1)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044364)

Think Different. Think Better. Think Apple.

That's not called thinking; it's called drinking Koolaid.

Re:Lol. Linux fails copying Apple again. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31045072)

Shut the fuck up, douchebag.

Nah (1)

dreamchaser (49529) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046096)

Nah. Not interested in your proposal, nor in a flame war, so have a nice day Mr. Internet Troll [collegehumor.com] :)

I am sorry if I hurt your feelings by speaking the truth about Apple though. Don't worry, everything will be OK.

Re:Lol. Linux fails copying Apple again. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31045458)

Open source company fails to make a closed source, proprietary, walled off app store? OS company fails to convince people that DRM is a good option? News at 11.

Think Different, Better, Apple? What's different about their tablet? What's better about a Super Sized iTouch? And more importantly... how is following a company line thinking for YOURSELF?

But as mentioned above... you enjoy your kool-aid... while supporting a company that prides itself on being open and different... while surfing on a closed platform, from a company that just released a has-been product that's been around for 10 years yet is now ever so shiny.

Fuck you iSheeple. Baaaaaaaaaa.

Apple is the one who copied (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31046814)

Lol. Linux fails copying Apple again.

Actually, Apple copied app store from Danger.

every opportunity to copy all the best features

The "best features" of the Apple App Store are Apple's marketing department and Apple's monopolistic approach; that's something Linux isn't going to copy.

Will Linux forever be mired in 80's Unix technology? Looks like it.

Sadly, Apple remains mired in 80's technology.

Think Different. Think Better. Think Apple.

More like "turn off your brain and bend over for Steve".

As compared with? (3, Interesting)

SteveFoerster (136027) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043882)

I never used RHX, so this is a serious question: What did this give people that, for example, Synaptic Package Manager or even the Ubuntu Software Center doesn't?

Re:As compared with? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31044082)

The best benefit is you get to avoid using a buggy distribution whose owner is more interested in pushing stuff out the door than making solid releases.

Re:As compared with? (3, Insightful)

MSG (12810) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044126)

RHX was intended to be a marketplace. Software and support contracts were to be sold there. Here [businessweek.com] is an article covering its release; it's one of the wikipedia references.

Synaptic and Software Center are tools, like PackageKit and up2date are in Fedora and RHEL. RHX wasn't an tool.

iPhone and Android app stores (2, Insightful)

Burz (138833) | more than 4 years ago | (#31048360)

...were not created to sell existing apps.

They were created to encourage small developers to write large numbers of new apps for their new platforms. "Hey look, if you write an app for our device, we'll make it easy for users to find you!"

As someone else remarked, the FOSS hobbyist + large corporation types that tend to write for 'Linux' don't find that compelling. But what if we want to attract the small biz types that Apple and Google have?

Well, consider this: both iPhone and Android have their respective SDKs to help get started and provide a solid sense for what each platform contains/does. RedHat's platform has no well-defined SDK and I'd even say it is no platform at all, unless you assume that servers are the target system in which case LAMP is the platform. But was RedHat trying to attract server apps with RHX? And isn't the target audience in that case sysadmis and web developers, people who are far too sophisticated to need an app store?

At some point, Google will release Chromium and try to duplicate the Android experience on the desktop/laptop. It will have an SDK and there will be a clear idea of what's included and what isn't (what a dev has to supply in his apps). An app store for such a thing, a real platform, has a far better chance of succeeding.

RHX may be dead; captive markets are for zombies (3, Insightful)

ipX (197591) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043888)

The summary left out the important bit of the quote...

"When you've got marketplaces that offer buyers the choice of buying in the marketplace or directly from the vendor themselves, which is what our marketplace was, there isn't a real efficient marketplace."

I think part of the problem here is not so much the App store itself, but the fact that there is no FLOSS captive market to force $1.99 apps upon. Another factor may be that Red Hat is great since they support and tailor their product for a very specific purpose, but I'm not sure they really have the pull to make an App store with enough sales volume.

Netcraft (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31043930)

But has Netcraft confirmed it?

Phone Message for Redhat (4, Insightful)

Xeleema (453073) | more than 4 years ago | (#31043966)

"Hey guys! This is Mike over here at Linspire! Listen, I'm calling from 2002 so I have to make this short; We have this great idea called 'Click-N-Run', where people will be able to use a client-side application to buy Linux software from commercial 3rd party vendors. We're gonna be huge!"

oblig (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044266)

"Every Lindows boy and girl...
All around the Lindows world...
Gonna do the Lindows rock...
All around the Lindows clock...

Re:Phone Message for Redhat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31044660)

That should have been big. It failed only because the idiot Michael Robertson meddling and changing course a dozen times. Not to mention screwing up and getting rid of the person who finally let things happen the way they should of happened from the beginning (free'd basic cnr service, freed linspire, and probably would have separated non-free software/drivers from the distribution like Ubuntu has done, moved away from defaulting to root, etc) and got contracts with other larger distributors. Robertson did make a few smart moves and then allot of bad ones. The name was a smart move. He got the company 15 million dollars to work with from a 5 million initial investment. That Microsoft lawsuit was a great idea. He lost it all though by outright theft and ruined the company in the process after a successful business model had been proven to work. The only thing left was to increase the user base by increasing the number of users that could access the CNR service. That never happened. It could have- the contract was a done deal until Kevin Carmony left and then nothing was followed up on. A year went by and the company flopped. I honestly think that there LAST chance to fix it was me... and they lost me. They actually never had me. Long story short we couldn't come to an arrangement. The company had already collapsed practically. They had 20 employees. My risk was significant and I wanted more than they could offer to offset that risk. I figured the company had several months before it probably would collapse and I was right on.

History gonna repeat itself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31044698)

Linspire was acquired by Xandros, and guess what?

http://www.apps2market.com/PR_launch_1109.php

Press Releases: New Xandros Company Launches First Custom White Label App Store Service

Using the logic behind this.. (2, Funny)

sleeponthemic (1253494) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044308)

I'm releasing a twitter for dogs. I know it'll be popular because twitter is. I shall name it Woofer.

Re:Using the logic behind this.. (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044460)

With 100% noise, the signal-to-noise ratio of Woofer would be 0.
Which is a lot better than Twitter's negative signal-to-noise ratio.

Re:Using the logic behind this.. (1)

obarel (670863) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045746)

When the SNR is negative, is that because the signal is negative, or because the noise is negative?

Maybe it's cuz (3, Insightful)

lena_10326 (1100441) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044632)

yer tryin to sell shit to people who think everything is free. Duh.

Re:Maybe it's cuz (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044830)

Except that Red Hat Linux is not free... Except the beta tester version.

Re:Maybe it's cuz (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31045238)

There is the CentOS rebuild of RHEL. Sadly, the CentOS is actually better than RHEL: it includes OpenOffice by default, it doesn't split its repositories up into weird "Cluster" and "Virtualization" repositories but keeps it all together, and the "centosplus" repository has kernels that activate NTFS access and the "extras" repository has good GeoIP and other tools. I'm willing to buy RHEL licenses to pay for their kernel and packaging work, but I prefer to run CentOS.

Re:Maybe it's cuz (1)

StuartHankins (1020819) | more than 4 years ago | (#31047750)

RHEL has moved away from positioning itself as a distro for both desktops and servers, and is now focused primarily on enterprise-level servers. It is not intended for laptops, desktops, or similar user-centric machines.

Let me say that again -- RHEL is designed to be used primarily for enterprise-level servers. OpenOffice, an end-user application, is by definition not something that would belong on an enterprise server unless it's a terminal server. If you want a terminal server then you just add the packages yourself, or you choose them during setup.

While I can see uses for GeoIP for webserver reporting, you need to give your feedback to Red Hat (not Slashdot) to try and get it included in the default repo so it will be supported. Adding repositories to RHEL is relatively simple. Or you could just install it manually. I use a couple of programs that I download and install manually (HP utils and rar). There are many ways to script this so it happens on all servers if you want; I only have 7 Red Hat servers (all but 1 are remote, and these run several different versions of RH OS) so it's quicker to do some things manually.

NTFS-3g adds NTFS support without recompiling the kernel. I use it daily for rsyncing 400+ GB of data between our datacenter and an external drive in another location on a host running Fedora 12. Maybe 30GB of the 400GB actually changes each day. So NTFS-3g works.

The more important issue with custom kernels is that the majority of third-party applications I've seen require specific kernels for support (or so they can duplicate the issue). Red Hat can require you to revert to a known good kernel if you require their support on an issue. Because of these reasons, drivers custom-compiled into the kernel are in general a bad idea if you picture yourself actually having to use the support you've paid for.

PR is what's wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31044770)

I use Linux daily since 1994 and never heard of this RedHat Exchange.
I've never used Apple, but I knew about iPhone way before it was released.

It's the 'free as in beer' problem (1)

sproketboy (608031) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044842)

Not to be confused with 'free as in freedom'.

Odd statement quoted (1)

joeslugg (8092) | more than 4 years ago | (#31044960)

'When you've got marklar that offer buyers the choice of buying in the marklar or directly from the vendor themselves, which is what our marklar was, there isn't a real efficient marklar.'

Heh?

Re:Odd statement quoted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31045500)

South-Park episode reference.

http://www.southparkstudios.com/clips/151555

Another nail in Linux's coffin. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31045204)

haha! Soon Linsux will be dead!

a very important lesson (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31045658)

for all the free software fanboys and fan-gran-ma's !

Nobody dies virgin, free software fu*cks all !

It probably depends on the product... (1)

argent (18001) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045756)

When you've got marketplaces that offer buyers the choice of buying in the marketplace or directly from the vendor themselves, which is what our marketplace was, there isn't a real efficient marketplace.

It depends on the product, I guess. Palmgear [palmgear.com] seems to be staying in business even though there's always been the option of going direct to the vendor. When I've bought handheld software I've sometimes bought it from an "app store" like Palmgear, and sometimes from the vendor. Once or twice I've even found it through Palmgear and then bypassed them because I needed to research the product more.

It's not just that Palmgear sells software suited for casual impulse buys (though of course you're more likely to just "click buy" for Bejeweled than for several hundred dollars worth of database engine) because when I've bought software for the company I'm as likely to go through "the usual reseller" as go direct to Microsoft or Symantec, because that's what the purchasing department is set up for.

But those are still pretty much standalone products. You don't need to have a relationship with Symantec to roll out another 50 copies of antivirus. Are there really any products like that for Linux?

Red Hat had an App store? (1)

mvfranz (258949) | more than 4 years ago | (#31045930)

Sorry, but this is the first I heard of an App store from Red Hat. What kind of software can you get there?

Re:Red Hat had an App store? (1)

mini me (132455) | more than 4 years ago | (#31046796)

You and me both. Maybe I would have been interested in using and/or developing for it had I known about it. One thing about the Apple App Store is for sure: virtually everyone knows about it.

What about package managers? (1)

Bootarn (970788) | more than 4 years ago | (#31060186)

If you will, a package repository can be viewed as some kind of appstore, in the sense that it's a centralized repository for applications. Perhaps a contributing factor to RHX's demise is that there already exists a plethora of package management systems, and that Red Hat users felt that it was a confusing addition to the mix. Freedom of choice is a good thing, but too many options are more likely to confuse consumers, making no solution stand out.

Try advertising it? (1)

ebvwfbw (864834) | more than 4 years ago | (#31068326)

I have been to their site probably hundreds of times over the past 15 years. We have onsite dudes as well. Not one single time do I remember one word about it. Make it easy guys, advertise it, at least say something.

Just me that's never heard of it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31070340)

Maybe they used Commodore's style of marketing but I've never even heard of it, despite working as a RHEL sysadmin for last 10 years.

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