Mainframe Propeller Head

Jul 28 2009   4:06PM GMT

Report: IBM, Novell to cut SUSE Linux price on mainframe

Mark Fontecchio Mark Fontecchio Profile: Mark Fontecchio

Timothy Prickett Morgan apparently got his hands on a Novell presentation about SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES), its iteration of Linux that is the most popular distribution running on the mainframe on top of z/VM.

Morgan reports that IBM and Novell are close to announcing a limited time slicing and dicing of support license costs for SLES, to the tune of as much as 50%. Here are the details:

The basic license cost for SLES 11 (and any SLES release for that matter) on IBM mainframes is $11,999 per engine for a one-year contract. That gets you installation support and Web support thereafter. A standard 9×5 business hour contract with human beings providing support for a year costs $15,000 per engine, and for premium 24×7 support, it costs $18,000. With this impending promotion, basic SLES 11 support prices per mainframe engine are being cut 40 per cent to $7,199, standard support is being cut 32 per cent to $10,200, and premium support is being cut 27 per cent to $13,200.

There is also another, seemingly separate promotion (it doesn’t look like the two can be combined):

If mainframe shops want to save some additional bucks after that, they can get a three-year support contract at 35 per cent of list and a five-year contract at 47 per cent off list. This can be some pretty substantial savings. A five-year SLES 11 premium support contract runs $44,999 per engine after the discount, which works out to $9,000 per engine. This promotion will be offered on the midrange System z10 BC mainframes (that’s short for Business Class, and offering from 1 to 5 mainframe engines), not the full-blown z10 EC machines (short for Enterprise Class, and spanning from 12 to 64 engines). This promotion will run until December 31, apparently. It is not clear when it will be launched, but probably this week or next.

In the presentation, Novell claims that it has 1,300 customers running Linux on 4,000 Integrated Facilities for Linux (IFLs), which is the mainframe specialty engine built to run Linux.

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