No changes will be made to Turbolinux's Asia-Pacific business following the acquisition of its software section by Japan's Software Research Associates (SRA). Asia Pacific manager Ashok Pandey, based in Beijing, said Turbolinux planned to continue focusing on large enterprises and government business in the mainland market, while the Japan operation would be managed separately. Turbolinux said this week it would sell its name and Linux-related business to SRA, one of Japan's oldest software firms. No financial terms were disclosed. What remains of the California-based company will focus on software for partitioning hard drives. Mr Pandey said the fact that Turbolinux's mainland operation was 51 per cent owned by Space Linux, a unit of China's Aerospace Ministry, meant the SRA purchase would not directly affect the China business. He hoped SRA's involvement would mean more backing for porting software to the Linux operating system. 'Because SRA is a software company in Japan and Linux is their strategic platform, so they're going to move a lot of applications to Linux platforms,' he said. Mr Pandey said the key to winning more Linux contracts was applications. 'The thing is the customer wants solutions. So our job is to port more and more applications to Linux. I think the government is very supportive, but we have to do that work.' Citing information from International Data Corp and China's CCID, Mr Pandey said Turbolinux had more than half of China's Linux market last year. Earlier this year, the company won a contract worth US$2.6 million to use Linux in Sinopec's nationwide smart-card project. Mr Pandey declined to comment on the number of licences involved in the Sinopec deal. The main revenues for Linux companies in China would come from support fees and software customisation, he said. Linux is an open-source operating system derived from Unix and competes against proprietary versions of Unix as well as against Microsoft's Windows. Mr Pandey noted Linux was installed on a smaller percentage of servers in China than in other parts of the world, but it had strong backing from the government. Turbolinux's other China customers include the Agricultural Bank of China and the Ministry of Finance. It is in negotiations with telecoms equipment maker Huawei on using Linux for its billing systems. The company recently closed its office in Taiwan.