Red Hat delays release of Linux software

BOSTON Thu Aug 2, 2007 6:33pm EDT

BOSTON (Reuters) - Software maker Red Hat Inc (RHT.N) said on Thursday it delayed its August release of a version of its Linux software for personal computers that would compete with Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT.O) Windows operating system.

Red Hat Global Desktop Linux will not be available until September, product manager Gerry Riveros told Reuters in an e-mail.

The product includes Linux operating system software and other compatible programs for desktop and laptop personal computers.

It is a niche market for Red Hat, which makes money servicing software it develops for server computers.

Red Hat had said in May it was working with Intel Corp. (INTC.O) on the desktop software, which it said would have features comparable to Windows, include a wide range of programs and would be sold with a one-year subscription to security updates.

Red Hat Global Desktop Linux is targeted for sale in developing countries where government agencies and small businesses cannot afford to pay for Microsoft's Windows operating system. Its primary competitor will be Ubuntu Linux, a free version of the operating system.

The new Red Hat product is being delayed so the company can investigate adding technology to permit users to view a wide range of video formats on their computers, including DVDs and streaming media, Riveros said.

He couldn't be reached to elaborate on his three-sentence email, which was in response to an inquiry from Reuters.

Officials with Intel familiar with the project couldn't be reached for comment.

In May, Red Hat said its partnership with Intel was based on the chipmaker's relationship with computer makers around the world.

(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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