IBM To Launch Aggressively Priced E-Business Bundle For zSeries

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IBM is expected to launch an aggressively priced integrated e-business platform for its zSeries mainframe at LinuxWorld.

IBM's Integrated Platform for e-business on zSeries--a combined Linux software and hardware bundle to be unveiled this week--will be offered at significant price discounts, said sources familiar with the announcement. Configurations will be available on both the zSeries 900 and Linux-only zSeries 800, according to documents viewed by CRN.

While the full price list was not available to CRN, sources said IBM will offer entry-level, integrated Linux software and mainframe configurations for as little as $150,000 and $250,000.

On Thursday, IBM Senior Vice President and Group Executive Steven Mills is expected to discuss the integrated offering as well as the company's future vision for Linux during his LinuxWorld keynote. IBM claims to have more than 600 customers currently in pilot tests and in production with Linux servers, including HSBC, Ford and Alcatel.

The integrated e-business platform for zSeries consist of zVM V 4.3, SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 7 for S/390 and zSeries, IBM WebSphere Application Server Version 4.0.4 and IBM Directory Server V. 4.1 on Integrated Linux Facilities for the zSeries 900 and Zseries 800 models. Installation and support from IBM Global Services will also be part of the package.

Sources said IBM currently offers an integrated Linux offering on its Intel-based xSeries servers. The availability of such a bundle on the zSeries 900, however, will enable a new segment of corporations to buy IBM's mainframes.

When asked about the IBM offering, one consultant attending LinuxWorld said the integrated offering and discount is substantial.

"It's a considerable drop," said Sam Albert, a former IBM executive and president of Sam Albert Associates, a consulting firm in Scarsdale, N.Y. "The integrated offering shows IBM's total commitment to Linux and also signifies a continued investment in the platform. Linux is here to stay."

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