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For some time, the big commercial Linux vendors have been happily wandering orchard of low-hanging enterprise fruit, almost completely eschewing markets such as consumers or small- to medium-sized businesses.
That single-minded focus may not serve them well against a relative newcomer to the enterprise Linux market: a newcomer that has quickly obtained a large percentage of the desktop Linux market and--more importantly--the hearts and minds of Linux developers.
The newcomer is Canonical, Ltd., the UK-based company that has masterminded the success of the Ubuntu distribution of Linux, and is now rolling into the enterprise marketplace with all the momentum that put it on the top of the desktop Linux field.
A healthy dose of skepticism is to be expected: while Ubuntu is known to be stable and very pretty, such things do not a strong enterprise-level distribution make. Taken alone, that would certainly be true, but there's a lot of things going on in and around Ubuntu Server that give it a more-than-fair shot at enterprise success.
Perhaps the most important advantage Ubuntu Server has against enterprise players like Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and Novell's SUSE Enterprise Linux Server (SLES) is the simple fact that, at any time, you can get your hands on Ubuntu Server free of charge. RHEL and SLES have trial programs available, but at the end of the day any production machine you want to deploy will have a price tag.
Read the rest at Enterprise Networking Planet.