No, this is not my annual April Fool joke. The ‘arch enemy’ of Linux, Microsoft has joined The Linux Foundation as a platinum member in an attempt to “better collaborate with the open source community”. The announcement was made at the ongoing Connect Event.
Fast forward 13 years and the new CEO of Microsoft Satya Nadella started showing feelings for Linux and Open Source. It open sourced .NET, openly proclaimed that Microsoft loves Linux and since then has open sourced a number of its products. It is also the biggest contributor to Open Source projects on GitHub.
In addition to all this, Microsoft has also got a (sort of) Linux OS of its own.
Executive director of the Linux Foundation, Jim Zemlin told ZDNet about his thoughts on Microsoft joining Linux Foundation:
“Our philosophy is that open source should be a big tent where anyone can contribute.
There was a time where proprietary versus open source was a winner-take-all proposition, but that’s in the past. Open source is now a major force in software development, and the industry realizes you can make yourself better, while also making others better at the same time. Microsoft has been embracing open source increasingly for the better part of a decade, including contributing to and supporting many Linux Foundation projects, so their decision to take the next step and become a Linux Foundation member didn’t come as a surprise to us.
Microsoft has grown and matured in its use of and contributions to open-source technology. The company has become an enthusiastic supporter of Linux and of open source and a very active member of many important projects. Membership is an important step for Microsoft, but also for the open-source community at large, which stands to benefit from the company’s expanding range of contributions.”
What’s your take on Microsoft joining Linux Foundation? Will it benefit Linux and Open Source in long run or it will be used by Microsoft for its own benefits. Do share your views.