This question has sparked allot of debates in the past. Is Linux designed and will it run properly as a business enterprise system, or is it mainly designed for use on your home PC, or maybe just as an experimental system? I have recently read an article, written by one or another Oracle database expert, proclaiming that Linux is not a true Enterprise Server platform, but rather a system designed for use on your home PC. Let me tell you a little story … something I have experienced about 9 years ago.
I was working for a medium sized private company (around 120 employees). In 1999, we decided to move all our in-house systems over to a Linux PC. Yes that is correct! … a Linux PC. No server hardware technology, no high end memory or hard drive technology, just a plain, simple PC. If my memory serves me correctly, it was a Pentium II with 256Mb RAM.
So in the end, we were running our Internet FTP site, our Website, our E-mail system, as well as our Intranet, Database and Call Logging system on this little PC.
In 2001, we were bought by another IT company (about the same size as our old company). The big "moving" day arrived, and I took our little Linux "server" to the new companies premises. I still remember just before switching the system off, the "uptime" on the system was 390 days! In their server room, they had the nicest looking servers (All Windows 2000 server editions). They had a server for their Website, another server for their database, another one for the e-mail … well … you get the picture, and you can imagine the surprise on their faces when I walked in with this little PC under my arm. I still remember them asking me … "What are you running on that little piece of junk?" …. to which I replied … "EVERYTHING!"
So the days went past, with a windows server reboot here, and another reboot there. Sometimes their systems gave weird problems, that made them do faultfinding for hours on end, and in the corner, on the floor, our little Linux system just kept on going and going. Needless to say, in the end, I made them see the light! (Even though it took me a year to convince them). In 2002 I helped them to move all their Windows based servers over to ONE Linux server. Sure it was a MUCH better system than our old little Linux PC, but at least I could mature our old Linux system, to be a full blown Linux Server system, fancy hardware and all!
Sure we have come a long way since 2001 and 2002. The server platforms have evolved and many problems of the past were sorted out.
So if we go back to the original question: "Is Linux a good choice, when it comes to a business enterprise server solution?" For us it was a good choice in 1999 and 2002, and I can promise you it is STILL a good choice!
Is Linux designed to run as a full blown enterprise system? It MUST be! I have proven it to myself in 2001, and I still see proof of it today!