May 7, 2009 at 6:23 pm
Intel and Novell have today announced a deal to push Moblin, the open source Linux platform designed for netbooks using the Intel Atom processor. As part of the deal, Novell will help to create a Moblin-based OS targeted for netbooks. It will also create an open lab in Taiwan to push Moblin adoption to the main netbook vendors i.e. Taiwanese based Asustek, Acer and MSI. The Novell distribution will be based on Moblin v2 for Netbooks.
If you remember, Moblin was originally created by Intel, but it recently handed over control to the Linux Foundation. The move was viewed as an attempt to attract more interest from netbook vendors who are currently steadfastly sticking with Windows XP. Judging from the Novell announcement, Intel still appears to be actively promoting the technology.
“It’s very possible you will see Novell going to market with OEMs on pre-installations on netbooks as early as a few weeks after the final release of Moblin 2.0,” according to Guy Lunardi, Novell’s Director of Client Preloads. Novell is also injecting Moblin with code from SUSE, Lunardi said.
Lunardi confirmed that Novell will only focus on optimizing Moblin for Atom and other x86 chips, not ARM. “We are very committed to the x86 architecture. We really believe that the industry doesn’t need a plethora of infrastructures,” he said. Novell did not offer a timetable for its Moblin v2 distribution, although it could happen as soon as a few weeks following the formal release of Moblin v2.