Linux Comes to Unisys Servers (via SCO)
SCO is to release versions of its Linux operating system for Unisys Corp’s ES7000 servers and ClearPath mainframes, confirming ComputerWire’s reports of late 2002 that Linux would soon be available for the machines.
The development is significant due to Unisys’s tight relationship with Microsoft Corp, and also because it means that Unisys has some of the most versatile server hardware around, an important consideration for server consolidation projects.
Lindon, Utah-based SCO said it will offer SCO Linux 4.0 for Unisys’ ES7000 servers and ClearPath Plus mainframes and will additionally provide sales and support for the operating system, including engineering development support and 24x7 customer level support.
Suggestions that Linux would soon be available for Unisys hardware were confirmed by the company’s VP server programs, Mark Feverton, in December 2002, as he denied reports that Unisys was working on the development itself. Feverton confirmed that there was interest in running Linux on the servers, but added that the company had no plans to pre-install Linux on its machines.
Talking to ComputerWire following SCO’s announcement, Feverton said that Unisys will not pre-install SCO Linux on the servers, and confirmed that SCO will be brought in to install the software for customers if required. Feverton added that Unisys would remain the first port of call for customers seeking support, but that SCO would provide software support behind the scenes.
It comes as little surprise that SCO has taken the step to put Linux on the ES7000 and ClearPath hardware. The company has traditionally had a strong relationship with Unisys, and its UnixWare variant of Unix already runs on the ES7000, although Windows Datacenter Server is Unisys’ operating system of choice.
The ClearPath Plus mainframes, meanwhile, can run Unisys’ OS2200 or MCP operating systems as well as Windows, UnixWare - and now SCO Linux - in partitions. The fact that the ClearPath can now run this range of operating systems makes it one of the most versatile machines around, and an attractive option for companies looking to consolidate heterogeneous servers on to a single machine.