For much of the past 30 years, Microsoft was famous for its hostility toward Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). They reserved special disdain for Linux, the Unix-like operating system that first emerged in the 1990s. Linux arrived on the scene just as Microsoft was beginning to batter Unix with Windows NT. The Microsoft leadership at the time, especially Steve Ballmer, viewed Linux as an existential threat. They approached Linux with an “us versus them” mentality that was, at times, rabid.
It’s not news that times have changed and Microsoft with it. Instead of looking to destroy Linux and FOSS, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has embraced it.
Microsoft has begun to meld with the FOSS community, creating Linux-Windows combinations that were unthinkable in the Ballmer era.
In just the past few years Microsoft has: