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Open Source IT: ASP Market Takes Off, Taking Linux With It

Jun 07, 2000, 20:24 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Paul Korzeniowski)

[ Thanks to Dan Orzech for this link. ]

"Aspiring application service provider (ASP) NetLedger Inc., faced a key question as it prepared to launch its services in the spring of 1999: What platform should it select to support its services? The San Mateo, Calif.-based start-up, which provides accounting services to companies with 50 employees or less, looked at Linux, Solaris, and Windows NT. "We determined Linux offered us the best combination of high performance and low pricing," says Dave Durkee, chief information officer at NetLedger, which now has 500 servers from VA Linux Systems Inc. running Red Hat's Linux distribution."

"Moving from one to 500 servers in less than year is a common occurrence for hyperactive ASPs, who run firms' Internet and business applications. Analysts expect this emerging space to grow rapidly: the total U.S. ASP market should top $48 billion by 2003, according to Deloitte Consulting."

"Start-up Ensim Corp., of Sunnyvale, Calif. has designed products to solve the one-customer, one-server problem. The firm's software sits on top of an operating system and lets an ASP divide it into distinct segments for each customer. "We tested the software and found it can support as many as 800 partitions," says Vikram Mehta, vice president of marketing at the company. Linux was the first operating system the firm chose for its products. "As a start-up, we had to watch our costs as we tried to prove that our software would work and Linux was easily the least expensive platform for us to work with," explained Mehta."

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