March 12, 2004

Quocircas Straight Talking: What Europes CIOs really think of Linux

Linux has caused seismic shifts across the IT industry. But for all its impact, are major vendors getting carried away? Quocirca analyst Dale Vile
asks whether Linux is just another operating system.

If you read the marketing literature put out by many IT vendors, you will get the impression that Linux already completely dominates the operating
system arena and is the only sensible option for corporate buyers who need a secure, scalable and open OS. The underlying message is that only suckers
would pay substantially more for demonstrably inferior commercial alternatives.

Against this background - and without getting into the arguments for and against Linux itself - it is interesting to analyse just how much Linux has
really been accepted in mainstream IT circles. To do this objectively, however, we have to understand the vested interests of the various groups
providing opinions and avoid the trap simply of taking what the noisiest of them say at face value.

Consider the IT vendors, specifically the Microsoft strategic competitor community made up of the likes of IBM, Oracle and Sun. Such players are
engaged in a perpetual struggle to control customer accounts and secure the greatest possible share of IT budget within them. The one thing they have
in common is that they are all trying to steal marketshare from Microsoft or vice versa.



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