Leading database vendor Oracle announced on Tuesday its decision to port its Oracle 8 database to Linux, the popular UNIX clone. Oracle 8 for Linux will be made available for a 90 day free trial via the Web by the end of 1998. Oracles says it made the decision to port its database and applications servers to Linux because of customer demand, not its desire to support any non-Microsoft operating system.

"Over the last few months, as the ground swell for Linux has increased, our customers have asked for Oracle's commitment to this popular platform. This announcement is a direct response to that customer demand," said Gary Bloom, executive VP of the System Products Division at Oracle. "Oracle on Linux will provide a compelling alternative to Windows NT for companies that want an Internet-based, low-cost point of entry for Web-enabling their business."