Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
The 451 Group has issued a report that shows that companies are beginning to pick up something serious Linux users have known since day one: You don't have to buy Linux to use it.
Oh make no mistake about it, if you don't have experienced Linux administrators on staff trying to run your business on Linux while picking up how to run it is just plain stupid. But, if you or your staff already knows Linux, it's another story entirely.
The 451 Group found that free community Linux distributions can be viable alternatives for major corporations. As Jay Lyman, a 451 Group analyst wrote, "Community distributions such as CentOS, Debian, and Gentoo are gaining enterprise respect for quality code, stability, response and, of course, for being 'free as in beer' and 'free as in freedom.' These community distributions are becoming a more significant market factor with growing enterprise acceptance and use of them."
What driving this, Lyman points out, is not just the free Linux price-tag, but the simple fact that it's much easier for companies to find IT staff who already know Linux. Experienced Linux managers may not be as common as Windows system operators but they're not rare either.