Cost-conscious schools are converting to Linux because they need high-performance computing capabilities at a low price. It helps that there are more people who are love Linux and are actively promoting its adoption, Red Hat National Sales Manager for Education John Punzak told LinuxInsider.
"We're moving out of the fringe of networks and moving intohigher-level, mission critical computing," Punzak said.
As colleges and even K12 become increasing digital, they need the distribution of applications served by a single infrastructure, and more tightly integrated institutional networks, Red Hat noted.
As of the second quarter, 600 schools are slated to use its Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Red Hat Network or other products, Punzak reported. Red Hat is hoping to top 3,000 customers by the end of the fiscal year.
It's not just K-12, colleges and universities are also building Linux clusters, which can produce the supercomputing performance required for high-end scientific research and business computing, Red Hat indicated.
At Vanderbilt University in Tennessee, for example, a Red Hat Enterprise Linux solution was estimated to be 60 percent less expensive than a continuation and update of the school's existing HP-UX infrastructure, said Kevin McDonald, Vanderbilt program manager for system administration.
"We saw lower [total cost of ownership] in three areas -- initial acquisition of hardware; software purchasing, which is usually priced according to platform; and system administration -- because our skills easily transferred," McDonald said.