Oracle said it will provide customers with enterprise-level technical support for the operating systems powered by UnitedLinux, in addition to support for the Oracle products. The company said it is working closely with founding members Connectiva, The SCO Group, SuSE Linux, and TurboLinux to create a joint escalation team that can service the entire Oracle stack running on UnitedLinux products.
The company said the support service will be open to customers that have an Oracle support contract for Oracle products and maintain an operating system support contract with any of the four UnitedLinux founding members.
"Oracle is not getting into the distribution business," said Dave Dargo, vice president, Linux Program Office, at Oracle. "We expect our customers to maintain a business relationship with both Oracle and UnitedLinux."
He added, "There will be no additional charge or contractual obligation on the part of the customers to get this additional level of support."
In addition to support, the agreement encompasses a deeper technical relationship between Oracle and the UnitedLinux developer team. The two will work together to identify areas that are important to improve Linux for enterprise-class deployments.
"With concurrent certification of our members' offerings and integrated global support, we expect this program will help ensure customer confidence in deploying Oracle solutions powered by UnitedLinux," said Paula Hunter, general manager of UnitedLinux. "Customers who have deployed Oracle products on our hardware platforms that are certified with UnitedLinux will be able to receive technical support directly from Oracle Support Services, leading to faster resolution of critical issues. Oracle intends to identify technical support issues and fix them in collaboration with UnitedLinux, providing customers a single point of contact. Customers can benefit from joint engineering efforts as Oracle and UnitedLinux collaborate to integrate required fixes/patches in future maintenance releases of UnitedLinux."
UnitedLinux completed certification of UnitedLinux 1.0 with both Oracle9i Database and the Oracle9i Real Application Clusters database clustering technology in February.
The support agreement underscores Oracle's increasing commitment to the Linux platform. In addition to the UnitedLinux certification, Oracle continued to back Red Hat's play in February when it submitted the Red Hat Linux Advanced Server for a Common Criteria (ISO 15408) evaluation at Evaluation Assurance Level (EAL) 2.
The move was intended to help security-conscious customers in both the public and private sector to procure an evaluated Linux platform and run their enterprise software on a secure Linux operating system.