Linux killed Sun?

For the Sun: WTF? files:

Gerstner questioned whether three or four years from now any proprietary version of Unix, such as Sun’s Solaris, will have a leading market position.

One of the more popular theories for the decline of Sun is that they accepted Linux way, way too late. As a counter-example, there’s IBM saying that somewhere around 2006 you’d see the steep decline of the Unix market, including Solaris, of course.

If I ever get around to writing that book on Sun, a chart showing server OS market-share from 2000 to 2016 would pair well with that quote.

If you’ve read Stephen’s fine book, The New Kingmakers, you may recall this relevant passage:

In 2001, IBM publicly committed to spending $1 billion on Linux. To put this in context, that figure represented 1.2% of the company’s revenue that year and a fifth of its entire 2001 R&D spend. Between porting its own applications to Linux and porting Linux to its hardware platforms, IBM, one of the largest commercial technology vendors on the planet, was pouring a billion dollars into the ecosystem around an operating system originally written by a Finnish graduate student that no single entity — not even IBM — could ever own. By the time IBM invested in the technology, Linux was already the product of years of contributions from individual developers and businesses all over the world.

How did this investment pan out? A year later, Bill Zeitler, head of IBM’s server group, claimed that they’d made almost all of that money back. “We’ve recouped most of it in the first year in sales of software and systems. We think it was money well spent. Almost all of it, we got back.”

Source: IBM to spend $1 billion on Linux in 2001 – CNET

CoreOS receives $8m in funding to bring its cloud-friendly Linux distro to market

Three tier webapp in CoreOS

Update: this report is now free to read, client or not.

As newsletter subscribers know, I’ve been working on a report about CoreOS. I find it intriguing as a possible “leap-frog” around cloud platforms like OpenStack…or possibly as future best buddies. Either way, it’s really interesting to watch that team try to re-imagine Linux for cloud scale.

The report is up now for clients, but here’s the 451 Take:

Along with companies like Docker (which CoreOS bundles) and Mesos, we’re seeing interesting trends that are reinventing how operating systems work, targeted toward cloud deployments. The end goal seems to ensure that Linux will not just become a component of cloud platforms, but become something of a cloud platform itself. CoreOS is an interesting tracer for this possibility. As CoreOS itself noted, gaining broader, ‘enterprise’ adoption is the main issue for a technology like CoreOS; most enterprises are slow to change over to new, automated methods of keeping raw infrastructure up to date. This of course leaves the early market pool as Web and cloud companies, which CoreOS seems gleeful to jump into. The ideas behind CoreOS are interesting and we’ll be watching to see how this cash injection will help fund compiling those ideas into running code and services.

And, as always, if you’re not a client, you can sign up for a free trial to check out our good.

CoreOS receives $8m in funding to bring its cloud-friendly Linux distro to market

Red Hat updates RHEL 7 for cloud with containers, Windows support and improvements (451 Report)

My colleague Jay Lyman and I wrote up Red Hat’s recent OS release, RHEL 7. Of interest to us, of course, is the work Red Hat is doing with containers. Clients can read the full report, and here’s the 451 Take:

In order to differentiate and draw enterprise interest for RHEL 7, Red Hat is wise to look to new technologies, such as containerization, and make them enterprise-ready. The company will need to find new sources of growth beyond Unix conversion and Windows defection, so its effort to link to other technologies and products – cloud computing, RHEV, OpenStack, OpenShift and devops – will be critical. Growth, we feel, lies in becoming the home for new workloads, and features in RHEL 7 like stripped-down, container-ready Atomic are targeting this opportunity.

If you’re not a client already, apply for a trial to check it out and put my name in as a reference.

Red Hat updates RHEL 7 for cloud with containers, Windows support and improvements (451 Report)

What workloads are you running on Red Hat Enterprise Linux?

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I came across this TechValidate stuff in a briefing today. It’s fun!

What workloads are you running on Red Hat Enterprise Linux?

Unix cash-cowing

As recently as Q4 2010, Unix server revenue was 25.6 percent of the worldwide market, with Linux at 17 percent, according to IDC. By the first quarter of 2012, Linux commanded 20.7 percent of worldwide server revenue compared to Unix’s 18.3 percent. And in IDC’s most recent report covering Q2 2013, Linux was up to 23.2 percent of all revenue with $2.8 billion, while Unix fell 21 percent year over year to $1.8 billion. Unix’s Q2 server revenue of 15.1 percent was its lowest ever reported by IDC. (Windows servers account for nearly 50 percent of revenue, while IBM’s mainframes took nearly 10 percent.)

Unix cash-cowing