Red Hat currently sells a version of the Linux operating system along with service and support, but this week the company released a beta version of
the new software, called the Red Hat Application Server. The software is scheduled for final release in the first half of 2004, spokeswoman Leigh Day
said, but pricing hasn't been determined.
Application servers provide a standard way to run programs -- usually written with Sun's Java programming language -- on a wide variety of servers.
Java application server features are set by the Java 2 Enterprise Edition specification, which ensures programs will be able to perform tasks such as
constructing Web pages, fetching information from databases and sending messages to other servers.