To a certain extent, Microsoft's decision to form a division focused on the OS core was driven by its main rival, Linux, says Rob Enderle, principal
analyst at Enderle Group, a consulting firm specializing on emerging technologies, in San Jose, California.
"They have been studying Linux extensively. Part of their study has been on how Linux has been able to maintain a high level of consistency in the
kernel while groups around it maintain maximum flexibility," Enderle says.