June 7, 2001

NHL.com dumps NT for Linux on IBM database

Author: JT Smith

- By Grant Gross -

As the New Jersey Devils and the Colorado Avalanche face off for the National Hockey League
championship, the Linux Tuxes have beaten the Windows NT Paper Clips at NHL.com.

The NHL's official Web site recently
switched its foundation from NT to Linux, NHL partner IBM announced today.

No one from NHL.com was available for comment, but a press release from IBM says site administrators
switched to Linux to improve performance at the high-traffic, media-rich site. NHL.com is averaging about 1.5 million
page views a day during the ongoing Stanley Cup finals, and the site's broadband section,
featuring videos of game highlights and player histories, is popular with fans.

The press release quoted Peter DelGiacco, vice president of information technology at the NHL, as saying:
"We wanted to be sure our Web site met the needs of our fans,
particularly during high volume periods such as the Stanley Cup. Adding Linux to our
site architecture has dramatically improved our manageability and
reliability. We can now more easily evolve the site as NHL.com continues to grow in popularity."

Jeff Jones, senior program manager for IBM data management solutions, says NHL.com's decision to switch
to Linux was prompted by a
long-standing e-commerce relationship
between IBM and the NHL.
The site now runs Red Hat Linux version 7.0 on its existing IBM database servers running AIX.
NHL.com's systems will include a Linux-cluster consisting of five IBM Intel-based servers
functioning as the Web server. Two IBM Intel-based servers will power
the site's search engine and chat functions, with two IBM Unix servers running the
back-end database operation using IBM DB2 software.

Jones, whose department's DB2 product runs on both Linux and Windows, hesitated to compare
the two, but noted the recent
DB2/Linux database benchmark victory
over SQL Server 2000 on Windows 2000.

According to IBM, NHL.com site managers weren't happy with the reliability, scalability and broadband
capability of their site under NT, so they completed an exhaustive site review, leading to the switch to Linux
and a change of Internet service providers.

"What this represents for Linux is another very visible customer who's betting its day-to-day online Web
business on Linux," Jones says. "The message here is that Linux is being trusted by more and more
commercial customers as something that can really scale and they can bet their businesses on. This is proving
that Linux is more than just a hacker's system or something limited to the markets of academia and ISPs."

For more information, check out the press release at InternetWire.


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