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Intelligent Enterprise: The Anything-But-Microsoft Market

Feb 04, 2004, 21:00 (5 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Joshua Greenbaum)

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"So with Microsoft positioned as the next big competitor and freeing up IT spending positioned as the worthiest of goals, it shouldn't be too surprising that enterprise software vendors are quietly pursuing Linux, open source, and other Microsoft alternatives, even as they continue to pledge fealty to the .Net deity. A number of these erstwhile competitors are realizing that getting customers to adopt non-Microsoft server, database, and, especially, desktop software could be the best way to free up the money customers need to buy their new killer apps. And getting customers dependent on non-Microsoft technology could also help competitors offset the advantages that Microsoft will undoubtedly have as its applications, server, desktop, and other software assets become increasingly intertwined and interdependent. In other words, the more ubiquitous anything-but-Microsoft technology can be in the enterprise, the more successful MBS's enterprise applications competitors will be.

"The battleground for the anything-but-Microsoft option spans the entire technology stack--and doesn't necessarily require a Linux solution. SAP's announcement in November 2003 that it was cutting a deal with Sybase to make that company's database available for SAP's mid-market Business One application is emblematic of this fight. Absent an offering like Sybase, most Business One customers would probably pick up Microsoft's database offering. Instead, the new partnership helps keep the MBS technology advantage to the minimum..."

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