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Apr 23, 2003, 23:30 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Demir Barlas)

"Sales representatives are often among the first to know what's going on with a customer's order. That's true at Marianna Industries, a manufacturer and distributor of beauty products with 265 employees.

"But, in order to get order information and relay it to customers, Marianna's salespeople have been somewhat limited. Mitch Folkers, IS Manager for Marianna, explains that they've had to get that information through PCs linked to the business applications Marianna runs on IBM AS/400 machines. Moreover, those PCs and laptops have to install specific software before any connection can be made.

"This is naturally a limiting factor for salespeople in the field, and Marianna recently decided to do something about it. The solution? Folkers says that Marianna turned to IBM's Integrated Platform Express, which runs on the increasingly popular Linux. Platform Express is a package of WebSphere Express, DB2 Express, and xSeries servers..."

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