Hewlett-Packard Co. and SuSE Linux on Thursday will announce that they have entered into an agreement that allows HP to resell and support SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 8 on industry-standard HP ProLiant servers and HPs Itanium-based servers.
This relationship provides customers with a single point of purchase, support and maintenance for SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 8 and makes SuSE Linux a preferred vendor for HP. Customers utilizing SuSE Linux Enterprise Server on HP servers will now also receive support from the HP services and support organizations backed by SuSE engineering and product maintenance teams.
While HP will resell, market and support the new SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 8 on industry-standard HP ProLiant servers, it is collaborating with SuSE on the road map for HPs Itanium-based servers.
SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 8 for the Intel Itanium 2 processor is available directly from SuSE.
C.J. Coppersmith, HPs director of Linux strategy, told eWEEK that enterprise customers want a seamless support and buying experience and do not want to deal with multiple vendors in this regard.
“Working with SuSE, we can help them extend their reach globally and in the enterprise. The industry is currently primarily being driven by cost reduction and users moving away from a hardware lock-in with a particular vendor. Were following the needs of our customers, and that means providing commodity hardware,” he said.
Uwe Heine, a spokesman for SuSE Linux, told eWEEK that the agreement enables easier ordering and a greater optimization of the hardware and the software. “This HP commitment enables us to get our product out on a global basis and have a single point of contact with HP for all the support that a global organization like HP can bring to this,” he said.
While customer technical support will depend on the support agreements customers have with the vendors, HP traditionally deals with level one and two support while SuSE deals with level three support, he said.
SuSE has been working with HP since 1999 and already had a close technical cooperation. Managers who work with the engineering and development teams on both sides and who coordinate the product road maps have been making sure that early products from both sides are sent to the other party for testing and certification, Heine said.
HPs Coppersmith declined to comment on the lawsuit between The SCO Group and IBM and on SCOs warnings to users that Linux is an unauthorized derivative of Unix, except to confirm that HP is moving ahead with its Linux strategy and positioning.
HPs Linux priorities moving forward are to focus on its current Linux deployments and the volume market, while growing the value enterprise market as the customer need for that evolves. “Our strategy is to offer customers choice and fulfill their needs when they choose Linux,” he said.
In other Linux news, the UnitedLinux consortium has introduced the UnitedLinux Ready Partner program for ISVs.
The program allows ISVs to self-test and certify their products on UnitedLinux. Upon the completion of certification, ISVs will be designated UnitedLinux Ready partners. “Our goal is to have as broad a range of applications as possible available to Linux users, and we are happy to assist ISVs toward this objective,” said Paula Hunter, the general manager for UnitedLinux.
HPs Coppersmith said this announcement along with HPs support agreement with SuSE are steps forward for enterprise Linux. “The next frontier is providing single-point-of-support solution stacks to the market,” he said.