Windows, Linux grow while Unix stays flat (but undefeated)

Stability, not great growth, the market's mode

Windows and Linux operating systems are getting an ever-growing share of data center environments, as inexpensive x86 servers take over jobs once the domain of Unix operating systems, said Gartner.

But Unix use remains core in data centers, and while its revenue share is predicted to stay flat for the next five years -- from US$16.4 billion this year to US$16 billion in 2012 -- Gartner analysts this week said users of major Unix systems from Sun Microsystems, IBM and Hewlett-Packard Co. have nothing to worry about.

"Nobody is achieving great growth, but nobody is dying," said Gartner analyst John Enck, of the major Unix systems, adding that "there is stability."

Gartner, at its data center conference this week, said Windows is expected to get US$19.6 billion this year rising to US$22.2 billion by 2012. Linux, meanwhile, will grow from US$8.6 billion to US$12.2 billion over that same period.

"As a market, we want less complexity, we want fewer operating systems," said Enck.

Users will also continue to seek to simplify their environment, often by cutting back on the number of operating systems where possible. In an audience poll, the majority of attendees -- 80 percent -- were either reducing the number of supported operating systems or maintaining that number, with just one-fifth opting to add to their operating system mix.

Reducing the number of supported operating systems in a data center is easier said then done, said Frank Muller, senior director of IT technology and infrastructure support at HealthPartners, a health care provider, who was at the conference.

Muller said he supports AIX, Windows, Linux, a mainframe system and HPUX. When he asked the provider of one application that runs on HPUX to move it to AIX, the vendor complied. So far so good.

But a year and half later, Muller said he ended up moving the application back to HPUX because he couldn't get the vendor's long-term support for keeping the application on AIX. "If the vendor isn't there from an application-point of view, I don't think you will make much headway," he said.

The total operating system in the server market is just over US$54 billion this year, with US$9.5 billion in the category of "other" encompassing all the other operating systems such as OpenVMS, mainframe operating systems and other Unix systems.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Patrick Thibodeau

Computerworld
Comments are now closed.

Latest News Articles

Most Popular Articles

Follow Us

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Resources

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Compare & Save

Deals powered by WhistleOut
WhistleOut

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?