Linux spreading among UK SMBs

The use of Linux is growing in the UK SMB market, according to a survey of 200 small and medium businesses (SMBs) in the UK, conducted in September this year by Vanson Bourne on behalf of IBM. The survey indicates that 26% of small businesses already deploy Linux. Of those not yet using Linux, 15% said they are likely to use it in the future while a further 26% were undecided, and the remaining 59% had no current intention to adopt it.

The main reason given for moving to Linux was lower costs (38% of respondents), with performance, security and reliability at 23%. The major casualty in the migration to Linux is Windows, with 42% of users having moved away from Microsoft Windows NT and Windows 2003 server environments, 23% from Sun Solaris and 15% from HP UX.

IDC on Linux usage in Australia and New Zealand

IDC said usage levels in Australia indicated that the number of respondents using Linux servers had risen from 17.2% at the end of 1999 to 32.4% by the end of 2002 and forecast a figure of 40% by the end of the year. The survey said real growth was occurring in most industry sectors with the public sector leading the way – 37.8% of the respondents had already had experience with Linux. The finance industry appeared to be the slowest adopter, with the lowest uptake of 25% and a forecast of only a 3.6% increase.

The survey found that 38.4% of the respondents were actively involved in some way in deploying an open source operating system while 53.8% said they had no current plans to do so. Around 4.9% had considered the use of such an operating system and decided not to proceed.

In New Zealand the figures were roughly the same, with 55.6% having no plans, 4.2% having decided not to proceed, 16.7% considering the use of such systems and 23.7% involved in active evaluation.”The NZ public sector is noticeably more enthusiastic than their counterparts in Australia… public sector organisations have about 29% piloting or rolling out open source solutions with a further 29% considering it. This compares with only 11.1% in Australia,” the survey noted.

Who is the biggest competitor to Windows Server 2003?

Gartner estimates that between 60 to 70% of Windows Server users run NT 4, the grandfather of Windows Server 2003. Microsoft’s own estimates are closer to 35%. But 64 case studies released last week suggest the number is much higher. The large number of customers that use NT 4 are in no rush to upgrade to newer software or are in the process of moving to Windows 2000, analysts say, and that could hurt Windows Server 2003 sales for some time.

Gartner estimates that by the end of 2004, as much as one-third of NT 4 users will move to Windows Server 2003. “Two-thirds to 75%” will still be NT 4 customers by the end of next year, said Gartner analyst Tom Bittman. “There’s a lot of NT 4 dark matter out there.”

Jupiter: Linux and OO numbers

Open-source productivity suites did “surprisingly well” in the mid-size business market, with the OpenOffice suite alone claiming a share of about 6 percent. Furthermore, he found that some 19 percent of small businesses ran Linux on their desktop, and a whopping 26 percent ran Linux on their servers.

NetCraft: Windows 2003 usage doubles

The number of Web sites relying on Windows Server 2003 has doubled since July, according to numbers published this week by Netcraft, a U.K.-based Internet monitoring firm. Since July, the active number of sites running Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003 has increased 109 percent. Most of those (49%) are migrations from earlier editions of Windows server operating systems, primarily Windows 2000.