October 20, 2004


Those who want an alternative to Microsoft Windows OS, really have no full-functional alternatives. The daily star reports that EKUSH Operating System (OS), a projected alternative to Microsoft Windows monopoly and a clone to Windows NT, is in its early stages of development. Named after Bengali of 21, which is a symbol of Bangla language movement, the OS will come with several Bangla fonts in addition to the regular font types and a separate shell for full-functional Bangla Computing.

The Ekush website claims "The world needed a free Unix clone, it has been discovered (Linux) and the world needs a free Windows clone though."

The opensource initiative based in Bangladesh is taken by a 30-member development team, most of them are working in the US at IBM, Microsoft and Linux. The team is lead by Shamsuddoha Ranju, a Bangladeshi who works in Siemens Bangladesh Ltd. The first version of Ekush is currently available from www.ekush.com as a free download. The team has set a 24-month road map which sets the full-functional release in end 2005.

Licensing is one of the problems the Ekush team is expecting to face. As the project is not based in the US, Ekush OS will not be able to obtain the license banner of General Public License (GPL), the US-based licensing company. In Bangladesh a local patenting regulation does not exist. The Ekush development team are hoping a new local governmental regulation on licensing, currently in the works, will pass before the launching of its final product. I hope the licensing do not get clogged on the bureaucratic red-tape, which has pulled the country from advancement since long.


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