"The German government has signed a deal with IBM and Linux
company SuSE that makes it easier for government offices to use the
open-source operating system, a move that addresses concerns about
relying too heavily on Microsoft products.
"The government isn't mandating the use of Linux, but the deal
makes it possible for hundreds of federal, regional and local
governments to purchase IBM computers running SuSE's version of
Linux at a discount price, said German foreign ministry spokesman
Dirk Inger. The purchasing framework covers both desktop computers,
where Microsoft has its stronghold, and more powerful networked
server systems where Linux is a stronger competitor.
"The deal provides an open-source counterweight to an earlier
discount arrangement with Microsoft..."
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