SuSE takeover 'pushed customers to Debian'

SuSE takeover 'pushed customers to Debian'

Summary: CeBIT: The word in Hannover is that some German government agencies have switched their allegiance away from SuSE Linux, because following Novell's takeover it is no longer a German company


A German company that provides support for Debian, the free Linux distribution, has claimed that Novell's takeover of SuSE Linux has been good for Debian-related business.

Noèl Köthe, a Debian developer and a consultant at Debian support firm Credativ, said at CeBIT on Friday that his German-based company experienced a surge of interest in its Debian support offering after Novell completed its takeover of SuSE Linux in 2004.

Köthe claimed that some German government agencies decided to switch to Debian and use local support companies as SuSE was no longer a German company.

Köthe was unable to say how many government agencies had made the switch, but claimed that between 30 and 40 organisations in total have moved from SuSE Linux to Debian in the last year.

Novell didn't confirm or deny Köthe's claims, but insisted that its acquisition has helped SuSE Linux to reach more public sector customers around Europe.

"Novell has a strong heritage in the enterprise computing market and has a large number of public sector customers," said a Novell spokesperson. "The acquisition has meant that SuSE Linux has been able to utilise the reach and resources of Novell to reach an even broader public sector audience, such as Dundee City Council, Central Scotland Police, Higher Court of Düsseldorf and City of Bergen."

Topics: Apps, Software Development

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  • That sounds stupid to me.
    Is Microsoft a German company?
    Is IBM a German company?
    Are HP, Sun, AMD, Intel, ... German companies?

    Besides, considering the *tight* budget many government agencies have, I don't see how that could ever be a point in a buying decision.
    I guess it's more like government agencies are ditching the expensive SuSE/Novell-support (which I haven't heard anything good about, anyway) in favor of cheap and flexible support provided by small companies.
  • I agree with the previous poster. The idea that Germans are arrogant enough to ditch SuSE just because it's been taken over by an American Company is ridiculous. It is far more likely to be the same problem that Red Hat has been having ever since it changed it's licensing scheme and started charging more. In fact the Red Hat licence scheme change also benefited Debian for a while as many SysAdmins and CIO's decided there was little point in paying an extortionate sum for GNU/Linux when it (the software) is available from a great vendor like Debian for free.

    Gentoo, GNU/Linux on crack!
  • This may not be a crazy as people think. Germans can be as Nationalistic as anyone. If there was a German company making products on par with IBM, or HP, there could also be a mass switch. Remember, a big movement in the US was "Made in the US". China is doing the same thing with it's software. This is about money, and money into state treasuries.
  • That's true. Just likeFrench government bodies look at Mandrake first.
  • I happen to live in Germany, and many people here are simply disappointed with SuSE's = Novell's new way. Nobody cares a sh*t who the owner is, but people care a lot if the most recent Linux version messes up their RAIDs and all you get from SuSE is a
  • Debian is a superior distribution from a server tech's point of view. To say that has saved my sorry a** a thousand times over would be the understatement of the decade.