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World's largest Linux migration gets major boost

The German national railway puts all its weight behind open-source

By Kieren McCarthy
February 4, 2005 12:00 PM ET

TechWorld.com - The world's largest Linux migration is speeding ahead, with the German national railway announcing today that it has successfully moved all of its 55,000 Lotus Notes users to the open-source operating system.
Describing the moment as the first important milestone in its companywide move to Linux, Deutsche Bahn said it expects the move to provide continuous cost savings, greater flexibility and integration benefits as it gradually moves the rest of its business over.
The company has already shifted its vital train timetabling system from HP Non-Stop to Linux. Next, it will move various SAP systems, including sales support, from Unix to Linux. And by the end of the year, all remaining critical systems such as databases, application servers, Web servers, mail servers and network infrastructure will be running on Linux, the company said.
The vast project -- which dwarfs even the frequently noted migration of the Munich Council to Linux -- was agreed to last year, with half of its 300 or so servers moved by November 2004. The announcement today demonstrates that the company is determined to move ahead with the adoption of open-source software.
"Our mission is to develop and deliver an efficient and economical IT service for German railways. Linux is a key element in our strategy, and the smooth process of migrating our mainframe-based Lotus Notes system is a clear sign that this major project will be successful," said Detlef Exner, director of production at Deutsche Bahn's IT service provider, DB Systems.
Deutsche Bahn's systems run mostly on hardware from IBM, which is overseeing the rollout.
"This strategic choice is further proof that Linux has matured as a strategic enterprise platform offering a variety of advantages like cost savings, shorter development time and a high level of security," said Steve Menadue, European vice president for IBM's technology group. "IBM continues to deliver strong support for Linux across all of IBM's technology platforms as still more companies look for simple, safe and cost-effective enterprise computing."

Reprinted with permission from TechWorld.com. Copyright 2012 IDG, all rights reserved.
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