INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY VENDOR IBM has introduced cut-price enterprise servers that use Linux on its Power architecture.
IBM’s Powerlinux range of servers use the firm’s Power7 processors and Linux distributions from Red Hat and SUSE to compete against x86-based kit from AMD and Intel. According to IBM, its Powerlinux range will address requests from customers to run Linux applications on its Power7 chips, which are usually found in servers running the firm’s proprietary AIX Unix implementation.
IBM claims its Power7 chips offer better price performance than x86 servers, with Colin Parris, GM of IBM Power Systems saying, “As CIOs seek to transform their IT department from a cost center to a strategic asset, many have a misconception that deploying Linux on x86 servers equipped with VMware software is their only option for taking advantage of open source applications.”
IBM’s decision to release a range of servers that use Linux on its own Power7 architecture is yet another sign that customers are getting fed up with proprietary Unix operating systems from big enterprise vendors. HP has told The INQUIRER that its customers see a future in which they will move away from HP-UX onto Linux, and IBM’s Powerlinux is a sign that its customers are asking for Linux rather than being tied down to a closed source operating system that has a high level of vendor lock-in.
Being fair to IBM, it has been active in the Linux community for a well over a decade and it is not surprising to see the firm push its own Power7 processors in a bid to generate a bit more cash from a business that has largely been reliant on its own proprietary Unix operating system. IBM hopes that companies wanting to move to Linux-based operating systems will do so using its own Power-based kit rather than look at alternatives. µ