Linux Foundation sees broadening role for developers

Foundation adds new courses to reflect job changes

Linux developers were once just that, developers. But their role is changing says the Linux Foundation, which is expanding its training options to help them.

The foundation, an industry supported non-profit, has added two courses to its program, OpenStack Cloud Architecture and Deployment and Linux Enterprise Automation.

Linux professionals are working more and more with cloud systems, automation technologies, and in agile development environments, and the courses were added to reflect those changes, said Amanda McPherson, the vice president of marketing and developer programs at the foundation.

At one time developers might have focused getting requirements, writing their own scripts, and working alone. Today, developers are often working at assembling services, collaborating with external cloud providers, and using automation tools.

Linux developers today, "are much more of an orchestrator than a mechanic," said McPherson.

The training includes mastering technologies such as the IT automation tool Puppet, and Spacewalk, a management system, said McPherson. About twenty percent of the course work involves people skills, and how to work with collaborative communities.

Demand for Linux continues to grow. Linux servers represent more than 20% of all server revenue, with Windows servers at about 46%, according IDC research. Unix servers and mainframe systems make up the balance.

Patrick Thibodeau covers cloud computing and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed. His e-mail address is pthibodeau@computerworld.com.

See more by Patrick Thibodeau on Computerworld.com.

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