Community Aid Abroad in Australia is installing Linux servers throughout its offices around the country.
In addition, open source software has been chosen to support a new field office in Dili, East Timor for a relief effort underway by the organisation.
George Grisancich, IT manager for CAA said Linux was chosen because of its robustness, transparency to users and low cost.
CAA has been running a Linux server in its national office for the last four years.
In four years, CAA's Linux server in Melbourne has rebooted only four times, Grisancich said. "Linux was the obvious choice," he said.
Following success with the single box, CAA is upgrading its national office to support more Linux machines and a Novell server which will run a small accounting application. In addition, Linux servers are being installed in Brisbane, Adelaide, ACT, Darwin, Tasmania and West Australia, Grisancich said.
"Linux suits an organisation like us quite well," he said, adding the attractiveness of open source software empowers people to learn and develop more.
Grisancich said the Linux environment in Dili, set up in late October, uses file transfer protocol UUCP (Unix-to-Unix Copy) and an e-smith server to provide file and print sharing and e-mail connectivity to the 20 users via a satellite phone network.
In two weeks time, the organisation will be switching to Telstra's GSM mobile network, rolled out in Dili in mid-November for improved service and greater bandwidth, he said.