With more that 62 per cent of companies looking to cut back or freeze spending on information technology, large corporations are looking again at using open-source software such as Linux instead of proprietary software, IDC research shows. Sometimes referred to as "free" software, open-source software provides end users with access to the underlying software code and is often much cheaper to acquire than proprietary software.
While open-source software is common on back-end computing systems, the IDC survey suggests 68 per cent of respondents are considering adopting the open-source Linux operating system on desktop computers.
This will not be good news for Microsoft, given an increase in Linux use on desktops will diminish the sales of Windows 7, which is now available in a pre-release form to software developers and has been scheduled for commercial release in the latter half of 2009.
The survey suggests the crucial reasons for Linux adoption were to lower initial and ongoing costs associated with IT implementation and support. However, researchers Al Gillen and Brett Waldman point out that although 2009 will see an increase in the installed base of Linux, most respondents still do not see Linux as a viable alternative to Windows software already in use.
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