IBM Integrating Linux
As early as 1999, IBM considered integrating and promoting Linux. (Gabriel 1). Linux contained an “open source code”, meaning that anyone could view and modify the code without violating the licensor’s copyright. (Baldwin 10). As an open source development community, Linux remained a free operating system available to all, and exclusive to none. IBM originally had many concerns about integrating Linux. Because the operating system consisted of individuals rather than an established hierarchy, there was no “point of control”. (Baldwin 2). IBM feared vulnerability to program “bugs” and a lack of program support. (Baldwin 10). By implementing 600 employees to monitor and create Linux programming, IBM fully realized the savings, efficiency, and customization of the Linux operating system. (IBM products and Services for Linux).
IBM’s competitors, Sun, Dell, and Hewlett-Packard chose not to fully integrate and support the Linux community. (Gabriel 3). As a result, these companies failed to gain an important edge in the operating systems market. IBM fully integrated Linux, not only providing cheaper options for customers, but also enhancing customer satisfaction through unique program customization. By establishing the Linux Technology Center in 1999, IBM “actively collaborated with customers to develop and test Linux solutions both large and small.” (Gabriel 2). IBM continued to invest money and manpower to ensure system development had a wide range of Linux application, middleware, and management software. (Gabriel 3). As a result, 20% of IBM’s business came from small and medium size business in 2006. (Gabriel 5).
Larger business also profited from IBM’s support of Linux. IBM consolidated its Power Systems server into a single Power Systems Group consisting of Unix, Linux, and i5/OS applications. (Day 1). Once consolidated, IBM’s customers reported better performance, scalability, and reliability than ever before. (Day 2). The system...