This week Microsoft posted on GitHub the first stable build of its own Linux distribution, CBL-Mariner (Common Base Linux), which was published under the open source MIT license. It is an internal distribution designed for Microsoft cloud infrastructure, edge products and services.
The description of the distribution says that it was created for the purpose of unification, as a base platform for various products and services. In particular, CBL-Mariner uses the Azure cloud service.
Also behind the development of this distribution is the Linux Systems Group team, which created the Windows Subsystem for Linux version 2 and was responsible for integrating Linux into Windows.
For the first time they started talking about CBL-Mariner back in the fall of last year, and now one of the Microsoft engineers has published a detailed guide to creating ISO-images of CBL-Mariner, and the company has published the distribution kit on GitHub, without drawing too much attention to this event. CBL-Mariner 1.0 is a set of base RPM packages that will form the basis of the future image. There are over 3000 packages in the Microsoft catalog.
It is ironic that twenty years ago, in 2001, Steve Ballmer called Linux a “cancer” (however, many years later he gave up these words), and today Microsoft is one of the most active participants in open source projects in the world and owns GitHub.