Moving Ubuntu into the enterprise, especially on the server, has been a significant undertaking. While the Ubuntu Server Edition has been around since late 2005, it really came into its own in mid 2006 with Ubuntu 6.06LTS — the first Long Term Supported version. The LTS versions are released every two years and supported for a full five years on the server.

Since then the product has been enhanced significantly, shipping with the best open source tools. For those wishing to take advantage of the latest kernel builds and utilities the Server version tracks the regular Ubuntu’s six-month cadence. It is proving to be a very popular platform with hundreds of thousands of corporate and SMB users globally. If you have not seen the most recent server statistics then you should. Registration required.

With the current economic crisis, we’re seeing more enterprises looking for greater value and lower costs in their server infrastructures. One of the interesting findings from a recent survey (see figure below) is the range of hardware technologies on which Ubuntu finds itself. Just last week we spoke to a Chicago-based finance house that runs entirely on Ubuntu server and runs their open and proprietary stack on Ubuntu on Hewlett Packard machines mostly, with some Dell in the mix. These heterogeneous environments are pretty common and the range of software it is run on pretty wide. Our survey also indicted that hardware support is very important to our users.

Which is why it is great news that HP are partnering with us to move towards full certification of Ubuntu on Proliant servers – more about this over the next few months. This will give another layer of assurance to users and customers – particularly in the enterprise – with market leader HP recognizing the growing importance of Ubuntu to enterprise and SMB customers. The certification means HP will list Ubuntu as a supported operating system and verify the work undertaken by Canonical to ensure full certified compatibility. Furthermore both companies are fully co-operating at the engineering level to provide full underlying confidence for HP customers using the certified servers.

This is great news for users who’ve adopted Ubuntu as their enterprise class server software and even better new for those using HP Proliant servers.

Mark Murphy – Alliances Manager, Canonical

Hardware Profile - CLICK TO ENLARGE