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Red Hat

(RHAT)

was up 25.4% at midafternoon after

W.R. Hambrecht

TheStreet Recommends

raised it from market neutral to buy and said the Linux software maker's new subscription service "is finally a way for this company to generate revenue.''

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Microsoft Corporation Report

, the traditional software leader, was trading near its lowest level since November 1998, down 2.8%.