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Linux scores a big win in Munich

May 28, 2003 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive

IBM announced today that the city council of Munich, Germany plans to move 14,000 PCs and 16,000 users from Windows to Linux, in a move to make Linux their standard desktop operating system environment. The City of Munich's decision comes on the heels of reported efforts from Microsoft to win this business, including a visit from executive Steve Ballmer to the Mayor of Munich, as well as press reports of… significant discounts from Microsoft in order to win against Linux, IBM said.

Although the council has not made a decision on its choice of vendor, SuSE AG and IBM Germany will participate in the resulting contract bid, expected to begin in 2004, IBM said.

According to the IBM announcement, Munich's move to Linux builds on other Linux momentum IBM has seen in Germany and elsewhere. For example, IBM said it already has contracts with the German Governments of Schwaebisch Hall and the City of Dortmund; and worldwide, more than 75 IBM government customers — including agencies in France, Spain, UK, Australia, Mexico, the United States and Japan — have now embraced Linux to save costs, consolidate workloads, increase efficiency and enact e-government transformation.

Today's decision is more evidence that Linux is a powerful alternative to proprietary systems, IBM said.

IBM provided the following translation of the Munich City Council's announcement . . .

Munich goes with Open Source Software

The city of Munich will use Linux as the operating system for their 14,000 PC clients as well as open source software for their office applications. With the votes of SPD, Alliance 90/Die Gruenen/Pink list, FDP, OEDP, REP and Party of Democratic Socialism, the town assembly followed Mayor Christian Ude's proposal.

An appraisal given by the city in order to evaluate the pro and cons of a conversion of the present urban standard “Windows NT/Microsoft Office” alternatively on “Windows XP/Microsoft Office” or “Linux/Open Office” comes to the conclusion that there is a clear strategic-qualitative projection/lead for the open source solution.

Mayor Ude: “With this trend-setting decision Munich secures itself as the first major city to have a major portion of its IT infrastructure be supplier-independent and sets also a clear indication of more competition in the software market. The prehistory of this decision already showed that a competitive situation helps the formation of prices pretty well. “

Regarding the decision, mayor Ude pointed out that this is not a decision for a specific IT partner, but a strategic positioning based on a noncommittal market evaluation.

Until spring 2004, a detailed concept of implementation and migration will be developed. Based on the results of this evaluation, the city council will decide how the migration to Linux will take place.

Additionally, the following related statement was issued by IBM Germany . . .

May 28th 2003

The city council of Munich today made a key decision to deploy the open source operating system Linux instead of alternative operating systems. This initiative will see Germany's third largest city migrate 14,000 desktop and notebook computers to Linux. Their objective is to deploy information technology that stimulates more commercial and technological flexibility at a lower cost to the public sector. Although the council has not made a decision on its choice of vendor, Linux distributor SuSE AG and IBM Germany will be participating in the resulting contract bid.

Walter Raizner, Country General Manager IBM Germany: “In the public sector in Germany we have seen a variety of new implementations of open standards-based software such as Linux. And worldwide, more than 75 IBM government customers — including agencies in France, Spain, UK, Australia, Mexico, the United States and Japan — have now embraced open computing and Linux to save costs, consolidate workloads, increase efficiency and enact e-government transformation. With Munich's decision, one thing is clear — it's open season for open computing. Linux represents freedom and flexibility. This is essential in e-government — they need more flexibility to serve their constituencies better and faster, and freedom of choice to do it at less cost to the public. Munich is leading the way.”

 
This article was originally published on LinuxDevices.com and has been donated to the open source community by QuinStreet Inc. Please visit LinuxToday.com for up-to-date news and articles about Linux and open source.



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