"Linux applications seem to be proliferating on the
rebel operating system but are they ready for prime-time business?
With more than 6 million free downloads so far, Sun's Star Office
is the closest rival on Linux to Microsoft's Office on Windows. But
server application vendors are rushing to the platform with
database packages, email and accounting systems, plus a host of
Why is Linux attracting so much interest when it has possibly
far fewer features than any of its commercial rivals? For
customers, there are no server licence fees or client access
licensing a huge reduction in up-front costs. For independent
software vendors, there's the avoidance of direct competition from
operating system and database vendors their former partners which
are increasingly becoming their biggest rivals.
IBM is busy partnering up with these independent software
companies, training their sales channels to exploit the Linux
opportunity. One of these is the Computer Associates subsidiary
AccPac. This move by IBM is a challenge to Microsoft, which
recently acquired CA's competitor Great Plains Software."