Gartner Research

How to Decide on a Linux Server Platform

Published: 28 September 2007

ID: G00152032

Analyst(s): John R. Phelps


As Linux's capabilities and popularity have grown, more platforms have embraced it as a server operating environment. We present decision factors that will help in comparing the use of a mainframe platform with other platforms for your Linux implementation and also between nonmainframe platforms.

Table Of Contents
  • Overview
  • What You Need to Know
  • Role of Linux Is Expanded
  • Platform Environments Considered
  • Architecture Platform: Key Questions and Factors
    • What is the total number of Linux machines (and applications) that will be implemented?
    • Will the implementation schedule be a fast or slow ramp-up of systems?
    • What interaction and interoperability with other platforms or other Linux images is needed?
    • Can the systems scale to the level needed to ensure easy growth?
    • Will your workloads have occasional spikes that could benefit from temporary COD?
    • How effective is the platform in using its resources such as processor and memory?
    • Are you developing your own Linux applications, or will you depend on independent software vendors for your new applications?
    • How important are environmental factors in the platform selection?
    • What types of workloads are you planning to run on your Linux systems?
    • What are the security and isolation needs of your Linux workloads?
    • How will your Linux systems fit into your disaster/recovery plans?
    • Are your Linux workloads becoming mission-critical, and do they need the highest availability levels?
    • What will be the hardware cost over a three-year or longer period?
    • What are software license fees based on?
    • What platforms do you currently support?
  • Final Thoughts

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