Linux Is Growing Fast On Servers, and Red Hat Benefits

by Sam Dean - Apr. 29, 2011Comments (0)

Most people who follow Linux know that it has been a huge success at the server level, and powers much of the server infrastucture of the Internet. In fact, many Internet and enterprise users don't even realize the extent to which they depend on Linux and related platform technology every day. Now, new market research data from Gartner shows that in the global software market, Linux as a server OS was the fastest growing subsegment in the overall OS market for 2010. Red Hat is the big beneficiary.

According to a statement from Gartner: 

"In the server OS market, Linux (server) was the fastest-growing subsegment in 2010 as end users adopted more open-standard systems. Within the Unix OS market, IBM AIX had high single-digit growth, but Unix generally experienced modest or negative growth," said Alan Dayley, managing vice president at Gartner. "The EOL threat for Unix OSs such as Tru64 and NetWare pushed the 'other proprietary Unix' subsegment down 39.6 percent in 2010 as some vendors retired their proprietary Unix and moved users to more open systems."

In the client OS market, Gartner finds that Mac OS was the fastest growing subsegment in 2010, but it's not threatening Windows' dominion at this point. Gartner reports that Windows still has a whopping 78.6 market share in the overall OS market. 

Notably, Gartner's data also reflects a 3.2 percent decline in software revenue at Oracle from Solaris, while many are questioning Oracle's commitment to the OS. As far as Linux server-related market share goes, there was of course a big shakeup with Novell being bought by Attachmate, and it shouldn't be a surprise that Red Hat is dominating the Linux server market. Gartner reports:

"Red Hat has been dominating the commercial Linux (server) market. Revenue of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) server license went up 18.6 percent to $592 million in 2010, taking a 58.2 percent share of the Linux (server) market. Gartner analysts said the phenomenon demonstrates that the market has accepted Linux as a viable alternative to Unix and other proprietary OSs in mission-critical environments."

Those Red Hat-specific data points shouldn't come as a surprise. As we noted upon the news of the Novell and Attachmate deal, Red Hat was clearly the big winner. It remains the only independent, public, U.S. company focused primarily on Linux, and is flourishing at the server level.


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