In May, Linux convert Novell shared the source code of the previously proprietary Exchange Connector, a program that lets Linux e-mail software connect to Microsoft Exchange servers. And on Wednesday, Red Hat said it included the software in a test version of the third update to Red Hat Enterprise Linux.
The move illustrates the advantages and drawbacks of the open-source software in the business realm. On the one hand, it enables companies to cooperate, challenging common foes such as Microsoft or improving technology so the overall market grows faster. But on the other hand, it can make it harder for one company to maintain a competitive advantage over another.