• United States
by Matt Berger

Secure Linux maker teams with IBM in U.S.

Oct 25, 20022 mins
Enterprise ApplicationsIBMLinux

Software maker Trustix AS this week formally unveiled a deal with IBM to jointly market and sell its secure Linux software in the U.S. on hardware from Big Blue.

Trustix, of Trondheim, Norway, recently opened an office in San Jose and will begin pushing its wares to U.S. customers, Trustix Chairman and CEO Havard Wollan said. The company has been an IBM software partner since early 2001, mainly targeting customers in Europe and Africa.

Trustix has developed a version of the Linux operating system it characterizes as a “hardened Red Hat Linux with the look and feel of Microsoft Windows,” according to Wollan. In addition to an operating system, it sells a firewall server, proxy server, LAN server, Web server and e-mail server. Each of those is based on freely available software such as Apache, Postfix and Samba.

The company also has developed a proprietary server management application that can be used to configure and update its server software. It sports a management console similar to Microsoft’s Windows NT and should look familiar to IT administrators familiar with Windows, Wollan said.

Trustix claims to ship a more secure version of Linux than other vendors, based on the fact that all the features of the software are turned off by default until a customer turns them on. “We include as little as possible and turn off as much as possible,” Wollan said. “I subscribe to the theory that the operating system is a function of what you are using the server for.”

Microsoft has taken a similar off-by-default approach with its new generation of Windows server software.

IBM has been one of the most aggressive vendors in backing Linux, and it works with leading software makers including Red Hat and SuSE Linux AG to deliver Linux configurations to small and large customers. IBM announced in September that it had set up 7-Eleven in Norway with Intel-based IBM servers running Trustix Mail Server.

On Thursday, Trustix announced that Ferrari UK, the official Ferrari auto importer for the U.K., operated by Maranello Concessionaires Ltd., had installed five IBM servers running Trustix Linux to power and secure its Web operations.