Developing Desktop Applications at CodeWeavers
CodeWeavers was founded in 1996 during the advent of Linux with the goal of making desktop Linux more accessible to end users. We spoke with CodeWeavers President James Ramey to learn more about the company’s journey over the last 23 years, including his use of System76 hardware to help bring CodeWeavers products like CrossOver to-market.
“We started as handful of people on a mission of making Linux more accessible. We’re now a much larger group still pursuing this same mission.”
That larger group now includes 45 employees around the world, approximately half of whom are located in Saint Paul, Minnesota. CodeWeavers’ geographically diverse team serves an even more diverse user base, spanning consumer, business, education, and enterprise markets -- helping all of them run Linux.
“Customers have specific programs that they need to do their work. We provide the solution, porting and supporting those applications so they can be used in non-native environments like Linux. We’re helping to make Linux more useful for people switching from other operating systems, and we’re supporting more and more games on the Linux platform as well.”
James is quick to note that, while Linux has excellent native application support, there are certain programs that customers are dependent on. Oft-used applications such as word processors, desktop email clients, and design and engineering software tend to be more difficult to move away from. CrossOver is CodeWeavers’ alternative to dual booting or running programs in a virtual machine, allowing users to run their favorite programs from a Linux environment.
Despite this dependence on certain programs, CrossOver users at Stanford University, MIT, the University of Michigan, and many Fortune 50 companies still prefer to use Linux as their overall daily driver. Of course, the team at CodeWeavers love Linux too.
“Our developers are hardcore Linux users, from custom-built machines to Linux pre-installed machines like System76. We live Linux and understand what Linux users need.“
Over the last year, James has been on a journey to migrate his own work over to Linux. Motivated by his curiosity about Linux, frustration with other platforms, desire to better understand his Linux customers’ workflows, and encouragement by his colleagues at CodeWeavers, James found the transition to be seamless.
“System76 was the first and foremost on my mind, and I’ve been really happy with everything since I switched. The laptop offered all the features (e.g. graphics card, backlit keyboard, display), with all the functionality I expected out of a premium laptop. The system is absolutely spot-on in terms of what I was looking for.
We look to System76 as being the company making hardware more accessible to the same group of users that we serve. Like System76, we are trying to provide a platform that serves users with a commitment to Linux and open source.”
Are you or your development team ready to switch to Linux too? Connect with the System76 team today to discuss your options and find the right system that does the work and looks the part.