SUSE: Unleash the Tiger!

This is our first dispatch from the front lines: Washington DC. And I am not speaking of the election front lines, but of the Linux front. Linux Journal has come to SUSECon this year to, among other things, gauge the state of the world concerning all things open source. To plagiarize every president at the start of every state of the union address, the state of Linux is strong!

Especially so if the “state of SUSE” is any indicator. Suse revenues and total billings have increased 18% this year, 24% in the US. More interestingly, and perhaps more indicative of the global, tidal-wave sized trend, their number of $1 million++ contracts signed this year grew 22% while the dollar value of those deals grew a staggering 65%. So SUSE has signed more larger contracts for more, much larger deployments than ever before.

This is a really rock-solid indicator that open source software, once something Linux Journal readers sneaked in the corporate back door, has truly suffused enterprise IT and become, as Michael Miller, SUSE’s President of Strategic Alliances, said, “the de facto standard for software innovation.”

And yet, with all the “enterprization” of open source; it’s adoption by huge companies that some feared could impact openness and drive things toward the proprietary, SUSE remains even more committed to being the Open Open Source solution. Enterprise IT has come to realize that the foundational strength of open source is, in fact, its openness! (DUH) Open source reduces time to market and cost while ultimately providing a better product and SUSE continues to evangelize that openness upstream and down. For example, SUSE Enterprise Linux 12 (SLE 12), for which service pack 2 was announced today at SUSECon, details to follow, launched a public Beta for the first time. That public beta involved over 300 companies in 50 countries.

There are a slew of announcements to talk about, but I need to get back to more sessions. The one take away so far though is that SUSE continues to be excited to “unleash the tiger” that is the SUSE open source community and see what we all come up with next.

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