Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

CEO Jim Whitehurst pilots Red Hat into future

Filed under
Linux
Interviews

When Matthew Szulik left Red Hat abruptly for family health reasons in December, many people were scratching their heads over the company's new choice of CEO: a young executive from Delta Airlines, Jim Whitehurst. But Whitehurst's chief operating officer title at Delta and position outside of the technology industry are misleading; a peek into his past reveals a computer science degree and a passion for open source technology, not to mention a smooth operator who helped bring a struggling airline out of bankruptcy.

Still, Whitehurst, 40, has big shoes to fill in replacing Szulik, the man who took a small, unknown company and turned it into a savvy business competitor that made Linux a household name and struck fear in the hearts of much bigger rivals such as Microsoft. Today, Red Hat is the leading Linux vendor and is financially sound, but the company is in a pivotal phase of reinventing itself as a broader open source software provider and a multibillion-dollar technology leader that can compete long-term with much larger companies.

Whitehurst spoke with IDG News Service this week about the key findings of his first month on the job and where he thinks Red Hat should focus its attention to evolve at a sustainable pace. This is an edited version of that interview.

IDGNS: I was surprised to find out that you have a computer science background when I heard you came to Red Hat as COO from Delta Airlines. I didn’t expect you to be such a techie.

Whitehurst: I do have geek cred. For some reason, your reputation is always based on your prior experience. When I was at the airline, people said, "Who is this strategy consultant running an airline?" Now I'm an airline guy running a technology company. I wish I was called an airline guy when I was at the airline!

More Here




More in Tux Machines

Fedora 23 EOL, Bye to FBDEV, Installfests of Yore

With Fedora 25 safely out of the door, time has come to bid adieu to version 23. Users are urged to upgrade. Elsewhere, Robin Miller looked back at an activity that older Linux users may remember, the Linux installfest. Michael Larabel reported today that the kernel may drop framebuffer device drivers and Dustin Kirkland shared Ubuntu's security overview. Read more Also: neon User LTS, openSUSE Upgrades, Best Distro Poll

Chromium/Chrome News

It's Been A Quiet Year-End For BUS1, The Proposed In-Kernel IPC For Linux

With the Linux 4.10 kernel merge window expected to open this weekend, I was digging around to see whether there was anything new on the BUS1 front and whether we might see it for the next kernel cycle. While I have yet to see any official communication from the BUS1 developers, it doesn't look like it's happening for BUS1. In fact, it's been a rather quiet past few weeks for these developers working on this in-kernel IPC mechanism to succeed the never-merged KDBUS. Read more Also: Intel Working On 5-Level Paging To Increase Linux Virtual/Physical Address Space

Games for GNU/Linux