Microsoft has been a big contributor to Linux over the past several years, primarily focusing on improving support for its Hyper-V hypervisor. Jim Zemlin, executive director of the Linux Foundation, said that in becoming a member, “Microsoft is better able to collaborate with the open source community to deliver transformative mobile and cloud experiences to more people.” [Source]
Microsoft’s increasing commitment to open source has been met with some cynicism (and please, beloved commenters — try to refrain from “embrace, extend, extinguish” posts, as the very concept is preposterous when it comes to Linux) but, with projects such as Visual Studio Code and .NET, it is starting to win hearts and minds.
The company does appear to be a reasonably good open source citizen, not merely publishing source code repositories that are occasionally updated from an internal development branch, but actually performing development in the open, accepting community contributions and seeking community consensus when it comes to new features.
Let’s see how it plays out! Maybe one day Windows will become a free operating system as did the Mac OS some years ago.