IBM Program Puts Linux on High-End Servers

Integrated package of Linux-based technology will get businesses running the open-source operating system on IBM's high-end zSeries servers.

NEW YORK—IBM is rolling out an integrated package of Linux-based technology designed to get businesses running the open-source operating system on its high-end zSeries servers.

The program, announced Wednesday at the LinuxWorld conference here, is the second step in IBMs plans to offer such an integrated Linux platform on all of its eServer lines. In May 2002, the Armonk, N.Y., company offered a similar initiative for its xSeries line of Intel-based servers.

The goal is to give users preconfigured and pretested hardware and software packages to ease businesss migration to Linux, said Jim Stallings, general manager of IBM Worldwide Linux.

The latest product line is the zSeries, which includes IBMs massive z800 and z900 mainframes as well as its S/390 parallel enterprise servers, the G/5 and G/6, and the S/390 Multiprise 3000.

Some of those components include SuSE Linux Enterprise Server for S/390 and zSeries 7, z/VM 4.3—a virtualization technology that allows for servers to be carved up into separate "virtual" servers, including processor, storage and I/O resources—WebSphere Application Server AE 4.0.4 and IBM Directory Server 4.1.

The program on the zSeries will be generally available Feb. 28, although IBM already has several hundred customers in pilot programs, said Joan Meltzer, director of solutions marketing for enterprise servers at IBM.

The integrated platform program will be extended across IBMs Unix-based pSeries servers and midrange iSeries servers later in the year, Meltzer said.