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Linux 2001 — Linux Developers' Conference
29 June - 1 July 2001,
Renold Building
, UMIST, Manchester

Chris Benson - Treepax

DCE is alive and well in a data-centre near you - Why Linux Developers need to know about DCE (Distributed Computing Environment)

The OSF's Distributed Computing Environment was developed in the early 1990's to meet an urgent need: to simplify the development of secure, scalable, distributed applications.

DCE is middleware available on all commercial computer systems from PCs to mainframes and supercomputers. Until recently it has not been available on the free Unix platforms which has limited the use of Linux in environments for which it would otherwise be very useful. A few years ago the licensing for DCE was changed and the source code made available (but not open-sourced). A non-commercial project to port DCE to Linux fizzled out, partly due to Linux's rapidly changing code-base. Now a commercial port of DCE for Linux is available from one of the existing DCE vendors. This will enable Linux to be used in environments from which it has been excluded and gives Linux developers (yet) another toolkit to play with.

DCE is used by some application developers directly, but is more often embedded in other packages and development environments such as the Distributed File System and Encina Transaction Monitor. DCE is used all over the world, usually in very large systems, by business, government departments and academia.

This presentation gives a brief history of DCE, describes the services it provides and the current availability of DCE on Linux. It will look at the companies using DCE and the sort of applications for which it is used. I will explain why Linux developers should know about DCE -- and speculate on the opportunities for Linux and DCE in the 21st century.

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